St Hilary the Bishop of Poitiers

Saint Hilary, the great opponent of Arianism, was born around 320. He was raised as a pagan, but converted to Christianity as an adult. He became Bishop of Poitiers in 350. When the emperor Constantius II attempted to impose Arianism on the western Church, St Hilary led a vigorous opposition to his efforts. Because of his outspoken criticism, he was exiled to Phrygia in 356. There he became such a defender and champion of Orthodoxy that the emperor decided it would be less trouble to allow him to return to his diocese.

St Hilary continued to fight against Arianism until his death in 368. His holy relics still rest in the cathedral bearing his name at Poitiers in France.

He has lent his name to the “Hilary term” of English law courts and universities, which begin on or near his Feast Day.