Just as Heidegger inserted the problem of time into the question of Being, I am attempting to think the insertion of time into the event of reading. This question not only implicates itself into the performance of all scholarship, it also permeates almost every aspect of patristic production. That is, in the Father’s simultaneous commitments to develop theological thought, ground their output in previous texts and speak relevantly to their own generation, they wrestled with the complexities of time in their participation in living discourses. Plato addressed this dynamic in its forward trajectory in The Phraedrus via the metaphor of the “textual orphan.” The problem of reading and time, therefore, always functions forwards, backwards and sideways, touching upon questions of reception, production and the possibilities of engaging meaning. This short communication will address these larger theoretical questions through the exemplum of the fourth-century Trinitarian crisis as worked out between the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople. Select passages from Gregory of Nyssa, in particular, will be examined closely. This short communication will engage the thought of the forthcoming volume Reading the Fathers (T. & T. Clark, June 2011; ed. by myself and Morwenna Ludlow and including contributions, in addition to ours, from Johannes Zachhuber, Virginia Burris, Tamsin Jones, Matthieu Cassin and David Newheiser).