John Chrysostom: Wikis

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Saint John Chrysostom
East: Great Hierarch and Ecumenical Teacher
West: Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Born c. 347, Antioch
Died 14 September 407[1], Comana in Pontus [1]
Venerated in Anglicanism
Eastern Orthodoxy
Lutheranism
Oriental Orthodoxy
Roman Catholicism
Feast Eastern Orthodoxy
13 November (Repose—transferred from 14 September)
27 January (Translation of Relics)
30 January (Three Holy Hierarchs)
Western Christianity
13 September (Repose—transferred from 14 September)
Attributes Vested as a Bishop, holding a Gospel Book or scroll, right hand raised in blessing. He is depicted as emaciated from fasting, a high forehead, balding with dark hair and small beard. Symbols: beehive, a white dove, a pan[2], chalice on a bible, pen and inkhorn
Patronage Constantinople, education, epilepsy, lecturers, orators, preachers [3]

John Chrysostom (c. 347–407, Greek: Ἰωάννης ὁ Χρυσόστομος), Archbishop of Constantinople, was an important Early Church Father. He is known for his eloquence in preaching and public speaking, his denunciation of abuse of authority by both ecclesiastical and political leaders, the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, and his ascetic sensibilities. After his death (or, according to some sources, during his life) he was given the Greek surname chrysostomos, meaning "golden mouthed", rendered in English as Chrysostom.[1][2]

The Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches honor him as a saint and count him among the Three Holy Hierarchs, together with Saints Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzus. He is recognized by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Roman Catholic Church as a saint and Doctor of the Church. Churches of the Western tradition, including the Roman Catholic Church, some Anglican provinces, and parts of the Lutheran Church, commemorate him on 13 September. Some Lutheran and many Anglican provinces commemorate him on the traditional Eastern feast day of 27 January. The Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria recognizes John Chrysostom as a saint (feast days: 16 Thout and 17 Hathor).[3]

John is known in Christianity chiefly as a preacher, theologian and liturgist, particularly in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Among his sermons, eight directed against Judaizing Christians remain controversial for their impact on the development of Christian antisemitism.[4][5][6]. He was also active in destruction of pagan symbols and places of worship, including the temple of Artemis at Ephesus.

Contents

Biography

Byzantine 11th-century soapstone relief of John Chrysostom, Louvre
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Early life and education

John was born in Antioch in 349.[7] Different scholars describe his mother Anthusa as a pagan[8] or as a Christian, and his father was a high ranking military officer.[9] John's father died soon after his birth and he was raised by his mother. He was baptised in 368 or 373 and tonsured as a reader (one of the minor orders of the Church).[10] As a result of his mother's influential connections in the city, John began his education under the pagan teacher Libanius. From Libanius John acquired the skills for a career in rhetoric, as well as a love of the Greek language and literature.[11] As he grew older, however, he became more deeply committed to Christianity and went on to study theology under Diodore of Tarsus, founder of the re-constituted School of Antioch. According to the Christian historian Sozomen, Libanius was supposed to have said on his deathbed that John would have been his successor "if the Christians had not taken him from us".[12] He lived with extreme asceticism and became a hermit in about 375; he spent the next two years continually standing, scarcely sleeping, and committing the Bible to memory. As a consequence of these practices, his stomach and kidneys were permanently damaged and poor health forced him to return to Antioch.[13]

Priesthood and service in Antioch

He was ordained as a deacon in 381 by Saint Meletius of Antioch, and was ordained as a presbyter (that is, a priest) in 386 by Bishop Flavian I of Antioch. Over the course of twelve years, he gained popularity because of the eloquence of his public speaking, especially his insightful expositions of Bible passages and moral teaching. The most valuable of his works from this period are his Homilies on various books of the Bible. He emphasised charitable giving and was concerned with the spiritual and temporal needs of the poor. He also spoke out against abuse of wealth and personal property:

Do you wish to honour the body of Christ? Do not ignore him when he is naked. Do not pay him homage in the temple clad in silk, only then to neglect him outside where he is cold and ill-clad. He who said: "This is my body" is the same who said: "You saw me hungry and you gave me no food", and "Whatever you did to the least of my brothers you did also to me"... What good is it if the Eucharistic table is overloaded with golden chalices when your brother is dying of hunger? Start by satisfying his hunger and then with what is left you may adorn the altar as well.[14]

His straightforward understanding of the Scriptures – in contrast to the Alexandrian tendency towards allegorical interpretation – meant that the themes of his talks were practical, explaining the Bible's application to everyday life. Such straightforward preaching helped Chrysostom to garner popular support. He founded a series of hospitals in Constantinople to care for the poor.[15]

One incident that happened during his service in Antioch illustrates the influence of his sermons. When Chrysostom arrived in Antioch, the bishop of the city had to intervene with Emperor Theodosius I on behalf of citizens who had gone on a rampage mutilating statues of the Emperor and his family. During the weeks of Lent in 397, John preached twenty-one sermons in which he entreated the people to see the error of their ways. These made a lasting impression on the general population of the city: many pagans converted to Christianity as a result of the sermons. As a result, Theodosius' vengeance was not as severe as it might have been.[16]

Archbishop of Constantinople

A sculpture of John Chrysostom in Saint Patrick's Cathedral, New York City

In 398, John was requested, against his will, to take the position of Archbishop of Constantinople. He deplored the fact that Imperial court protocol would now assign to him access to privileges greater than the highest state officials. During his time as Archbishop he adamantly refused to host lavish social gatherings, which made him popular with the common people, but unpopular with wealthy citizens and the clergy. His reforms of the clergy were also unpopular with these groups. He told visiting regional preachers to return to the churches they were meant to be serving—without any payout.[17] In 401, Chrysostom led a mob to finally destroy the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus[18] (one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, although it had been destroyed and rebuilt several times by then).

His time in Constantinople was more tumultuous than his time in Antioch. Theophilus, the Patriarch of Alexandria, wanted to bring Constantinople under his sway and opposed John's appointment to Constantinople. Being an opponent of Origen's teachings, he accused John of being too partial to the teachings of that theologian. Theophilus had disciplined four Egyptian monks (known as "the tall brothers") over their support of Origen's teachings. They fled to and were welcomed by John. He made another enemy in Aelia Eudoxia, the wife of the eastern Emperor Arcadius, who assumed (perhaps with justification) that his denunciations of extravagance in feminine dress were aimed at herself.[16]

Depending on one's outlook, John was either tactless or fearless when denouncing offences in high places. An alliance was soon formed against him by Eudoxia, Theophilus and others of his enemies. They held a synod in 403 (the Synod of the Oak) to charge John, in which his connection to Origen was used against him. It resulted in his deposition and banishment. He was called back by Arcadius almost immediately, as the people became "tumultuous" over his departure.[19] There was also an earthquake the night of his arrest, which Eudoxia took for a sign of God's anger, prompting her to ask Arcadius for John's reinstatement.[20] Peace was short-lived. A silver statue of Eudoxia was erected in the Augustaion, near his cathedral. John denounced the dedication ceremonies. He spoke against her in harsh terms: "Again Herodias raves; again she is troubled; she dances again; and again desires to receive John's head in a charger,"[21] an allusion to the events surrounding the death of John the Baptist. Once again he was banished, this time to the Caucasus in Armenia.[22]

Death and Canonization

The return of the relics of St. John Chrysostom to the Church of the Holy Apostles in Constantinople.

Pope Innocent I protested at this banishment, but to no avail. Innocent sent a delegation to intercede on behalf of John in 405. It was led by Gaudentius of Brescia; Gaudentius and his companions, two bishops, encountered many difficulties and never reached their goal of entering Constantinople.[23]

John wrote letters which still held great influence in Constantinople. As a result of this, he was further exiled to Pitiunt (Georgia) where his tomb is a shrine for pilgrims. He never reached this destination, as he died during the journey. His last words are said to have been, "δόξα τῷ θεῷ πάντων ἕνεκεν" (Glory be to God for all things).[20]

John came to be venerated as a saint soon after his death. His disciple, Saint Proclus, Patriarch of Constantinople (434-447), during services in the Church of Hagia Sophia, preached a sermon praising his teacher. He said, "O John, your life was filled with sorrow, but your death was glorious. Your grave is blessed and reward is great, by the grace and mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ O graced one, having conquered the bounds of time and place! Love has conquered space, unforgetting memory has annihilated the limits, and place does not hinder the miracles of the saint." This sermon helped to mobilize public opinion, and the patriarch received permission from the emperor to return Chrysostom's relics to Constantinople, where they were enshrined in the Church of the Holy Apostles.

The Eastern Orthodox Church commemorates him as a "Great Ecumenical Teacher", together with Basil the Great and Gregory the Theologian. These three saints, in addition to having their own individual commemorations throughout the year, are commemorated together on 30 January, a feast known as the Synaxis of the Three Hierarchs.

There are several feast days dedicated to him:

  • 27 January, Translation of the relics of St John Chrysostom from Comana to Constantinople
  • 30 January, Synaxis of the Three Great Hierarchs
  • 14 September, Repose of St John Chrysostom
  • 13 November, St John Chrysostom the Archbishop of Constantinople

Writings

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Homilies

The Byzantine emperor Nicephorus III receives a book of sermons from John Chrysostom, the Archangel Michael stands on his left (11th cent. illuminated manuscript).

Known as "the greatest preacher in the early church", John's sermons have been one of his greatest lasting legacies.[24] Chrysostom's extant homiletical works are vast, including many hundreds of exegetical sermons on both the New Testament (especially the works of Saint Paul) and the Old Testament (particularly on Genesis). Among his extant exegetical works are sixty-seven homilies on Genesis, fifty-nine on the Psalms, ninety on the Gospel of Matthew, eighty-eight on the Gospel of John, and fifty-five on the Acts of the Apostles.[25]

The sermons were written down by the audience and subsequently circulated, revealing a style that tended to be direct and greatly personal, but was also formed by the rhetorical conventions of his time and place.[26] In general, his homiletical theology displays much characteristic of the Antiochian school (i.e., somewhat more literal in interpreting Biblical events), but he also uses a good deal of the allegorical interpretation more associated with the Alexandrian school.[25]

John's social and religious world was formed by the continuing and pervasive presence of paganism in the life of the city. One of his regular topics was the paganism in the culture of Constantinople, and in his sermons he thunders against popular pagan amusements: the theatre, horseraces, and the revelry surrounding holidays.[27] In particular, he criticized Christians for taking part in such activities:

If you ask [Christians] who is Amos or Obadiah, how many apostles there were or prophets, they stand mute; but if you ask them about the horses or drivers, they answer with more solemnity than sophists or rhetors".[28]

John's homilies on Saint Paul's Epistles proceed linearly, methodically treating the texts verse by verse, often going into great detail. He shows a concern to be understood by laypeople, sometimes offering colorful analogies and practical examples. At other times, he offers extended comments clearly intended to address the theological subtleties of a heretical misreading, or to demonstrate the presence of a deeper theme.

One of the recurring features of John's sermons is his emphasis on care for the needy.[29] Echoing themes found in the Gospel of Matthew, he calls upon the rich to lay aside materialism in favor of helping the poor, often employing all of his rhetorical skills to shame wealthy people to abandon conspicuous consumption:

It is not possible for one to be wealthy and just at the same time.
Do you pay such honor to your excrements as to receive them into a silver chamber-pot when another man made in the image of God is perishing in the cold?[30]

Treatises

Outside of his sermons, a number of John's other treatises have had a lasting influence. One such work is John's early treatise Against Those Who Oppose the Monastic Life, written while he was a deacon (sometime before 386), which was directed to parents, pagan as well as Christian, whose sons were contemplating a monastic vocation. The book is a sharp attack on the values of Antiochene upper-class urban society written by someone who was a member of that class.[31] Chrysostom also writes that, already in his day, it was customary for Antiochenes to send their sons to be educated by monks.[32] Other important treatises written by John include On the Priesthood (one of his earlier works), Instructions to Catechumens, and On the Incomprehensibility of the Divine Nature.[33] In addition, he wrote a series of letters to the deaconess Olympias, of which seventeen are extant.[34]

Sermons on Jews and Judaizing Christians

During his first two years as a presbyter in Antioch (386-387), John denounced Jews and Judaizing Christians in a series of eight sermons delivered to Christians in his congregation who were taking part in Jewish festivals and other Jewish observances.[35] It is disputed whether the main target were specifically Judaizers or Jews in general. His homilies were expressed in the conventional manner, utilizing the uncompromising rhetorical form known as the psogos (Greek: blame).

One of the purposes of these homilies was to prevent Christians from participating in Jewish customs, and thus prevent the perceived erosion of Chrysostom's flock. In his sermons, John criticized those "Judaizing Christians", who were participating in Jewish festivals and taking part in other Jewish observances, such as the shabbat, submitted to circumcision and made pilgrimage to Jewish holy places.[36] John claimed that on the shabbats and Jewish festivals synagogues were full of Christians, especially women, who loved the solemnity of the Jewish liturgy, enjoyed listening to the shofar on Rosh Hashanah, and applauded famous preachers in accordance with the contemporary custom.[37] A more recent apologetic theory is that he instead tried to persuade Jewish Christians, who for centuries had kept connections with Jews and Judaism, to choose between Judaism and Christianity.[38]

In Greek the sermons are called Kata Ioudaiōn (Κατὰ Ιουδαίων), which is translated as Adversus Judaeos in Latin and Against the Jews in English.[39] The original Benedictine editor of the homilies, Bernard de Montfaucon, gives the following footnote to the title: "A discourse against the Jews; but it was delivered against those who were Judaizing and keeping the fasts with them [the Jews]."[40]

Liturgy

Beyond his preaching, the other lasting legacy of John is his influence on Christian liturgy. Two of his writings are particularly notable. He harmonized the liturgical life of the Church by revising the prayers and rubrics of the Divine Liturgy, or celebration of the Holy Eucharist. To this day, Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches of the Byzantine Rite typically celebrate the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom as the normal eucharistic liturgy, although his exact connection with it remains a matter of debate among experts.[41] These same churches also read his Catechetical Homily (Hieratikon) at every Easter, the greatest feast of the church year.[42]

Legacy and influence

During a time when city clergy were subject to criticism for their high lifestyle, John was determined to reform his clergy in Constantinople. These efforts were met with resistance and limited success. He was an excellent preacher[43] whose sermons and writings are still studied and quoted. As a theologian, he has been and continues to be very important in Eastern Christianity, and is generally considered the most prominent doctor of the Greek Church, but has been less important to Western Christianity. His writings have survived to the present day more so than any of the other Greek Fathers.[1] He rejected the contemporary trend for allegory, instead speaking plainly and applying Bible passages and lessons to everyday life. His exile demonstrated the rivalry between Constantinople and Alexandria for recognition as the preeminent Eastern See, while in the west, the Pope's primacy remained unquestioned.

Influence on the Catechism of the Catholic Church and clergy

John's influence on church teachings is interwoven throughout the current Catechism of the Catholic Church (revised 1992). The Catechism cites him in eighteen sections, particularly his reflections on the purpose of prayer and the meaning of the Lord's Prayer:

Consider how [Jesus Christ] teaches us to be humble, by making us see that our virtue does not depend on our work alone but on grace from on high. He commands each of the faithful who prays to do so universally, for the whole world. For he did not say "thy will be done in me or in us", but "on earth", the whole earth, so that error may be banished from it, truth take root in it, all vice be destroyed on it, virtue flourish on it, and earth no longer differ from heaven.[44]

Christian clerics, such as R.S. Storr, refer to him as "one of the most eloquent preachers who ever since apostolic times have brought to men the divine tidings of truth and love", and the 19th-century John Henry Cardinal Newman described John as a "bright, cheerful, gentle soul; a sensitive heart."[45]

Music and literature

John's liturgical legacy has inspired several musical compositions. Particularly noteworthy are Sergei Rachmaninoff's Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Op.31, composed in 1910,[46] one of his two major unaccompanied choral works; Pyotr Tchaikovsky's Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Op.41; and Ukrainian composer Kyrylo Stetsenko's Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom; and Arvo Pärt's Litany, which sets seven sentence prayers of Chrysostom's Divine Liturgy for chorus and orchestra.

James Joyce's novel Ulysses includes a character named Mulligan who brings 'Chrysostomos' into another character's mind because Mulligan's gold-stopped teeth and his gift of the gab earn him the title which St. John Chrysostom's preaching earned him, 'golden-mouthed':[47] Chrysostomos also refers to Stephen, the independent and exiled genius: "He peered sideways up and gave a long low whistle of call, then paused awhile in rapt attention, his even white teeth glistening here and there with gold points. Chrysostomos." [48]

Relics

John Chrysostom died in the city of Comana in the year 407 on his way to his place of exile. There his relics remained until 438 when, thirty years after his death, they were transferred to Constantinople during the reign of the Empress Eudoxia's son, the Emperor Theodosius II (408-450), under the guidance of John's disciple, St. Proclus, who by that time had become Archbishop of Constantinople (434-447).

John's relics were looted from Constantinople by Crusaders in 1204 and taken to Rome, but were returned to the Orthodox on 27 November 2004 by Pope John Paul II.[49] His silver and jewel-encrusted skull is now kept in the Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos in northern Greece, and is credited by Christians with miraculous healings. His right hand is preserved on Mount Athos, and numerous smaller relics are scattered throughout the world.[50]

Notes

  1. ^ a b c "St John Chrysostom" in the Catholic Encyclopedia, available online; retrieved March 20, 2007.
  2. ^ Pope Vigilius, Constitution of Pope Vigilius, 553
  3. ^ Coptic synaxarium
  4. ^ John Chrysostom, Discourses against Judaizing Christians, translated by Paul W. Harkins. The Fathers of the Church; v. 68 (Washington: Catholic University of America Press, 1979)
  5. ^ Walter Laqueur, The Changing Face of Antisemitism: From Ancient Times To The Present Day, (Oxford University Press: 2006), p. 48. ISBN 0-19-530429-2. 48
  6. ^ Yohanan (Hans) Lewy, "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia Judaica (CD-ROM Edition Version 1.0), Ed. Cecil Roth (Keter Publishing House: 1997). ISBN 965-07-0665-8.
  7. ^ The date of John's birth is disputed. For a discussion see Robert Carter, "The Chronology of St. John Chrysostom's Early Life", in Traditio 18:357–64 (1962) Jean Dumortier, "La valeur historique du dialogue de Palladius et la chronologie de saint Jean Chrysostome", in Mélanges de science religieuse, 8:51–56 (1951). Carter dates his birth to the year 349. See also Robert Louis Wilken, John Chrysostom and the Jews: Rhetoric and Reality in the Late Fourth Century, (Berkeley: University of California Press:1983), p.5.
  8. ^ "John Chrysostom", Encyclopedia Judaica
  9. ^ The Encyclopedia Judaica describes Chrysostom's mother as a pagan. In Pauline Allen and Wendy Mayer, John Chrysostom, (Routledge:2000), p.5 ISBN 0-415-18252-2, she is described as a Christian.
  10. ^ Wilken (p. 7) prefers 368 for the date of Chrysostom's baptism, the Encyclopedia Judaica prefers the later date of 373.
  11. ^ Wilken, p. 5.
  12. ^ Sozomen (1995) [1890]. "Ecclesiastical History of Sozomen, Book VIII, Chapter II: Education, Training, Conduct, and Wisdom of the Great John Chrysostom". in Schaff, Philip and Wace, Henry (trs., eds.). Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Volume II: Socrates and Sozomenus Ecclesiastical Histories. Zenos, A. C. (rev., notes) (reprint ed.). Peabody: Hendrickson Publishers. pp. 399. ISBN 1-56563-118-8. http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf202.iii.xiii.ii.html. Retrieved 2007-03-29.  
  13. ^ Pauline Allen and Wendy Mayer, John Chrysostom, (Routledge:2000), p.6 ISBN 0-415-18252-2,
  14. ^ John Chrysostom, In Evangelium S. Matthaei, hom. 50:3-4: PG 58, 508-509
  15. ^ See Cajetan Baluffi, The Charity of the Church, trans. Denis Gargan (Dublin: M H Gill and Son, 1885), p. 39 and Alvin J. Schmidt, Under the Influence: How Christianity Transformed Civilization (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 2001), p. 152
  16. ^ a b Robert Wilken, "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia of Early Christianity, ed. Everett Ferguson (New York:Garland Publishing, 1997).
  17. ^ David H. Farmer, The Oxford Dictionary of the Saints, second ed. (New York:Oxford University Press, 1987) p.232.
  18. ^ John Freely, The Western Shores of Turkey: Discovering the Aegean and Mediterranean Coasts 2004, p. 148
  19. ^ Socrates Scholasticus (1995) [1890]. "Book VI, Chapter XVI: Sedition on Account of John Chrysostom's Banishment". in Schaff, Philip and Wace, Henry (trs., eds.). Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Volume II: Socrates and Sozomenus Ecclesiastical Histories. Zenos, A. C. (rev., notes) (reprint ed.). Peabody: Hendrickson Publishers. pp. 149. ISBN 1-56563-118-8. http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf202.ii.ix.xvii.html. Retrieved 2007-03-29.  
  20. ^ a b "St John Chrysostom the Archbishop of Constantinople". Orthodox Church in America. http://ocafs.oca.org/FeastSaintsLife.asp?FSID=103292. Retrieved 2007-03-29.  
  21. ^ Socrates Scholasticus, op cit "Chapter XVIII: Of Eudoxia's Silver Statue", p. 150.
  22. ^ "John Chrysostom" in The Oxford Dictionary of Church History, ed. Jerald C. Brauer (Philadelphia:Westminster Press, 1971).
  23. ^ CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: St. Gaudentius
  24. ^ "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia of Early Christianity.
  25. ^ a b "John Chrysostom" in the Catholic Encyclopedia, online, retrieved March 20, 2007.
  26. ^ Yohanan (Hans) Lewy, "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia Judaica (CD-ROM Edition Version 1.0), Ed. Cecil Roth (Keter Publishing House: 1997). ISBN 965-07-0665-8.
  27. ^ Wilken, p.30.
  28. ^ John Chrysostom, quoted in Wilken, p.30
  29. ^ Liebeschuetz, J.H.W.G. Barbarians and Bishops: Army, Church, and State in the age of Arcadius and Chrysostom, (Oxford: Clarendon Rress, 1990) pp.175-176
  30. ^ John Chrysostom, quoted in Liebeschuetz, p.176
  31. ^ Wilken, p.26.
  32. ^ Thomas Woods, How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization, (Washington, D.C.: Regenery, 2005), ISBN 0-89526-038-7, p.44
  33. ^ On the Priesthood was well-known already during Chrysostom's lifetime, and is cited by Jerome in 392 in his De Viris Illustribus, chapter 129
  34. ^ Kirsch, Johann Peter (1911). "St. Olympias". Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11248b.htm. Retrieved 2009-11-17.  
  35. ^ See Wilken, p.xv, and also "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia Judaica
  36. ^ Wilken, p.xv.
  37. ^ "John Chrysostom" in Encyclopedia Judaica.
  38. ^ Rodney Stark, The Rise of Christianity. How the Obscure, Marginal Jesus Movement Became the Dominant Religious Force in the Western World in a Few Centuries, (Princeton University Press:1997)p.66-67.
  39. ^ John Chrysostom, Discourses Against Judaizing Christians (vol. 68 of Fathers of the Church), trans. Paul W. Harkins (Washington, D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 1979) p.x
  40. ^ Chrysostom, Discourses Against Judaizing Christians, p.xxxi)
  41. ^ Parry (2001), pp. 268-269
  42. ^ Barker, Jason (2005). "Pascal Homily". Be Transformed. Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America, dept. of Youth Ministry. http://www.orthodoxyouth.org/romans/html/9paschalhomily.htm. Retrieved 2009-11-17.  
  43. ^ Parry (2001), pp. 268-269
  44. ^ John Chrysostom, Hom. in Mt. 19,5: PG 57, 280.
  45. ^ John Henry Newman, "St. Chrysostom" in The Newman Reader (Rambler:1859) available online(see esp. chapter 2). Retrieved March 20, 2007
  46. ^ "The Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom, Op 31". Hyperion Records, Ltd.. http://www.hyperion-records.co.uk/tw.asp?w=W9203.  
  47. ^ Blaimes (1996, 3).
  48. ^ Joyce (1961, 3).
  49. ^ Pope John Paul II. "Letter to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, His Holiness Bartholomew I". http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/letters/2004/documents/hf_jp-ii_let_20041127_consegna-reliquie_en.html. Retrieved 2007-03-20.  
  50. ^ "Thousands queue outside Cyprus church after reports of miracle-working relic". International Herald Tribune. 13 November 2007. http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/11/13/europe/EU-REL-Cyprus-Visiting-Relic.php. Retrieved 2007-11-13.  

References

  • Allen, Pauline and Mayer, Wendy (2000). John Chrysostom. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-18252-2
  • Attwater, Donald (1960). St. John Chrysostom: Pastor and Preacher. London: Catholic Book Club.
  • Blamires, Harry (1996). The New Bloomsday Book: A Guide Through Ulysses. London: Routledge. ISBN 0-15-3858-.
  • Brändle, R., V. Jegher-Bucher, and Johannes Chrysostomus (1995). Acht Reden gegen Juden (Bibliothek der griechischen Literatur 41), Stuttgart: Hiersemann.
  • Brustein, William I. (2003). Roots of Hate: Anti-Semitism in Europe before the Holocaust. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-77308-3
  • Carter, Robert (1962). "The Chronology of St. John Chrysostom's Early Life." Traditio 18:357–64.
  • Chrysostom, John (1979). Discourses Against Judaizing Christians, trans. Paul W. Harkins. The Fathers of the Church; v. 68. Washington: Catholic University of America Press.
  • Dumortier, Jean (1951). "La valeur historique du dialogue de Palladius et la chronologie de saint Jean Chrysostome." Mélanges de science religieuse, 8, 51–56.
  • Hartney, Aideen (2004). John Chrysostom and the Transformation of the City. London: Duckworth. ISBN 0520047575.
  • Joyce, James (1961). Ulysses. New York: The Modern Library.
  • Kelly, John Norman Davidson (1995). Golden Mouth: The Story of John Chrysostom-Ascetic, Preacher, Bishop. Ithica, New York: Cornell University Press. ISBN 0801431891.
  • Laqueur, Walter (2006). The Changing Face of Antisemitism: From Ancient Times To The Present Day. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-530429-2.
  • Liebeschuetz, J.H.W.G. (1990) Barbarians and Bishops: Army, Church and State in the Age of Arcadius and Chrysostom. Oxford: Clarendon Press. ISBN 0198148860.
  • Lewy, Yohanan [Hans] (1997). "John Chrysostom". Encyclopedia Judaica (CD-ROM Edition Version 1.0). Ed. Cecil Roth. Keter Publishing House. ISBN 965-07-0665-8.
  • Meeks, Wayne A., and Robert L. Wilken (1978). Jews and Christians in Antioch in the First Four Centuries of the Common Era (The Society of Biblical Literature, Number 13). Missoula: Scholars Press. ISBN 0-89130-229-8.
  • Palladius, Bishop of Aspuna. Palladius on the Life And Times of St. John Chrysostom, transl. and edited by Robert T. Meyer. New York: Newman Press, 1985. ISBN 0809103583.
  • Parks, James (1969). Prelude to Dialogue. London.
  • Parry, David; David Melling (editors) (2001). The Blackwell Dictionary of Eastern Christianity. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 0631189661.  
  • Pradels, W. (2002). "Lesbos Cod. Gr. 27 : The Tale of a Discovery", Zeitschrift für Antikes Christentum 6, pp. 81–89.
  • Pradels, W., R. Brändle, and M. Heimgartner (2001). "Das bisher vermisste Textstück in Johannes Chrysostomus, Adversus Judaeos, Oratio 2", Zeitschrift für Antikes Christentum 5, pp. 23–49.
  • Pradels, W., R. Brändle, and M. Heimgartner (2002). "The sequence and dating of the series of John Chrysostom's eight discourses Adversus Judaeos", Zeitschrift für Antikes Christentum 6, 90-116.
  • Schaff, Philip, and Henry Wace (eds.) (1890). Socrates, Sozomenus: Church Histories (A Select Library of Nicene and post-Nicene Fathers of the Christian Church, second series, vol. II). New York: The Christian Literature Company.
  • Stark, Rodney (1997). The Rise of Christianity. How the Obscure, Marginal Jesus Movement Became the Dominant Religious Force in the Western World in a Few Centuries. Princeton University Press.
  • Stephens, W.R.W. (1883). Saint John Chrysostom, His Life and Times. London: John Murray.
  • Stow, Kenneth (2006). Jewish Dogs, An Imagine and Its Interpreters: Continiuity in the Catholic-Jewish Encounter. Stanford: Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-5281-8.
  • Wilken, Robert Louis (1983). John Chrysostom and the Jews: Rhetoric and Reality in the Late Fourth Century. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Willey, John H. (1906). Chrysostom: The Orator. Cincinnati: Jennings and Graham.
  • Woods, Thomas (2005). How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization. Washington, D.C.: Regenery. ISBN 0-89526-038-7

Collected works

Widely used editions of Chrysostom's works are available in Greek, Latin, English, and French. The Greek edition is edited by Sir Henry Savile (eight volumes, Eton, 1613); the most complete Greek and Latin edition is edited by Bernard de Montfaucon (thirteen volumes, Paris, 1718-38) republished in 1834-40). There is an English translation in the first series of the Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers (London and New York, 1889-90). A selection of his writings has been published more recently in the original with facing French translation in Sources Chrétiennes.

External links

Works

Orthodox Feast days

Preceded by
Nectarius
Patriarch of Constantinople
398–404
Succeeded by
Arsacius of Tarsus

Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Christians above all men are forbidden to correct the stumblings of sinners by force ... it is necessary to make a man better not by force but by persuasion.

Saint John Chrysostom (347407), Greek Ioannes Chrysostomos, early Christian theologian, archbishop of Constantinople, saint. "Chrysostom" means "Golden-mouthed", a tribute to his exemplary talent as an orator. His writings were originally written in Greek. Outside the Christian tradition Chrysostom is noted for eight of his sermons which played a considerable part in the history of Christian antisemitism, and were extensively misused by the Nazis in their ideological campaign against the Jews.

Sourced

  • [T]he Jewish people were driven by their drunkenness and plumpness to the ultimate evil; they kicked about, they failed to accept the yoke of Christ, nor did they pull the plow of his teaching. Another prophet hinted at this when he said: "Israel is as obstinate as a stubborn heifer." … Although such beasts are unfit for work, they are fit for killing. And this is what happened to the Jews: while they were making themselves unfit for work, they grew fit for slaughter. This is why Christ said: "But as for these my enemies, who did not want me to be king over them, bring them here and slay them." (Luke 19:27)
  • Before they committed the crime of crimes, before they killed their Master, before the cross, before the slaying of Christ, [Jewish sacrifices were] an abomination.
  • Nothing is more miserable than those people who never failed to attack their own salvation. When there was need to observe the Law, they trampled it under foot. … On this account Stephen said: "You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart, you always resist the Holy Spirit", not only by transgressing the Law but also by wishing to observe it at the wrong time.
  • You [Jews] did slay Christ, you did lift violent hands against the Master, you did spill his precious blood. This is why you have no chance for atonement, excuse, or defense.

Quotes about Chrysostom

  • [A]lthough the tradition of Chrysostom continued to cause unbridled vituperation for Jews and Judaism, climaxing in the violence of 1096 and beyond, the modulating Augustinian position became, more or less, the "official" policy of the papacy … [G]overnmental coercion became the instrument though which the Church made its scornful commentary on Judaism. Here is the decisive turn in the history of Christian anti-Judaism, a turn whose ultimate disfiguring consequence was enacted in the political antisemitism of Adolf Hitler.

External links

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Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

(Chrysostomos, "golden-mouthed" so called on account of his eloquence).

Doctor of the Church, born at Antioch, c. 347; died at Commana in Pontus, 14 September, 407.

John -- whose surname "Chrysostom" occurs for the first time in the "Constitution" of Pope Vigilius (cf. P.L., LX, 217) in the year 553 -- is generally considered the most prominent doctor of the Greek Church and the greatest preacher ever heard in a Christian pulpit. His natural gifts, as well as exterior circumstances, helped him to become what he was.

Contents

LIFE

Boyhood

At the time of Chrysostom's birth, Antioch was the second city of the Eastern part of the Roman Empire. During the whole of the fourth century religious struggles had troubled the empire and had found their echo at Antioch. Pagans, Manichaeans, Gnostics, Arians, Apollinarians, Jews, made their proselytes at Antioch, and the Catholics were themselves separated by the schism between the bishops Meletius and Paulinus. Thus Chrysostom's youth fell in troubled times. His father, Secundus, was an officer of high rank in the Syrian army. On his death soon after the birth of John, Anthusa, his wife, only twenty years of age, took the sole charge of her two children, John and an elder sister. Fortunately she was a woman of intelligence and character. She not only instructed her son in piety, but also sent him to the best schools of Antioch, though with regard to morals and religion many objections could be urged against them. Beside the lectures of Andragatius, a philosopher not otherwise known, Chrysostom followed also those of Libanius, at once the most famous orator of that period and the most tenacious adherent of the declining paganism of Rome. As we may see from the later writings of Chrysostom, he attained then considerable Greek scholarship and classical culture, which he by no means disowned in his later days. His alleged hostility to classical learning is in reality but a misunderstanding of certain passages in which he defends the philosophia of Christianity against the myths of the heathen gods, of which the chief defenders in his time were the representatives and teachers of the sophia ellenike (see A. Naegele in "Byzantin. Zeitschrift", XIII, 73-113; Idem, "Chrysostomus und Libanius" in Chrysostomika, I, Rome, 1908, 81-142).

Chrysostom as Lector and Monk

It was a very decisive turning-point in the life of Chrysostom when he met one day (about 367) the bishop Meletius. The earnest, mild, and winning character of this man captivated Chrysostom in such a measure that he soon began to withdraw from classical and profane studies and to devote himself to an ascetic and religious life. He studied Holy Scriptures and frequented the sermons of Meletius. About three years later he received Holy Baptism and was ordained lector. But the young cleric, seized by the desire of a more perfect life, soon afterwards entered one of the ascetic societies near Antioch, which was under the spiritual direction of Carterius and especially of the famous Diodorus, later Bishop of Tarsus (see Palladius, "Dialogus", v; Sozomenus, "Hist. eccles.", VIII, 2). Prayer, manual labour and the study of Holy Scripture were his chief occupations, and we may safely suppose that his first literary works date from this time, for nearly all his earlier writings deal with ascetic and monastic subjects [cf. below Chrysostom writings: (1) "Opuscuia"]. Four years later, Chrysostom resolved to live as an anchorite in one of the caves near Antioch. He remained there two years, but then as his health was quite ruined by indiscreet watchings and fastings in frost and cold, he prudently returned to Antioch to regain his health, and resumed his office as lector in the church.

Chrysostom as Deacon and Priest at Antioch

As the sources of the life of Chrysostom give an incomplete chronology, we can but approximately determine the dates for this Aniochene period. Very probably in the beginning of 381 Meletius made him deacon, just before his own departure to Constantinople, where he died as president of the Second Ecumenical Council. The successor of Meletius was Flavian (concerning whose succession see F. Cavallera, "Le Schime d'Antioche", Paris, 1905). Ties of sympathy and friendship connected Chrysostom with his new bishop. As deacon he had to assist at the liturgical functions, to look after the sick and poor, and was probably charged also in some degree with teaching catechumens. At the same time he continued his literary work, and we may suppose that he composed his most famous book, "On the Priesthood", towards the end of this period (c. 386, see Socrates, "Hist. eccl.", VI, 3), or at latest in the beginning of his priesthood (c. 387, as Nairn with good reasons puts it, in his edition of "De Sacerd.", xii-xv). There may be some doubt if it was occasioned by a real historical fact, viz., that Chrysostom and his friend Basil were requested to accept bishoprics (c. 372). All the earliest Greek biographers seem not to have taken it in that sense. In the year 386 Chrysostom was ordained priest by Flavian, and from that dates his real importance in ecclesiastical history. His chief task during the next twelve years was that of preaching, which he had to exercise either instead of or with Bishop Flavian. But no doubt the larger part of the popular religious instruction and education devolved upon him. The earliest notable occasion which showed his power of speaking and his great authority was the Lent of 387, when he delivered his sermons "On the Statues" (P.G., XLVIII, 15, xxx.). The people of Antioch, excited by the levy of new taxes, had thrown down the statues of Emperor Theodosius. In the panic and fear of punishment which followed, Chrysostom delivered a series of twenty or twenty-one (the nineteenth is probably not authentic) sermons, full of vigour, consolatory, exhortative, tranquilizing, until Flavian, the bishop, brought back from Constantinople the emperor's pardon. But the usual preaching of Chrysostom consisted in consecutive explanations of Holy Scripture. To that custom, unhappily no longer in use, we owe his famous and magnificent commentaries, which offer us such an inexhaustible treasure of dogmatic, moral, and historical knowledge of the transition from the fourth to the fifth century. These years, 386-98, were the period of the greatest theological productivity of Chrysostom, a period which alone would have assured him for ever a place among the first Doctors of the Church. A sign of this may be seen in the fact that in the year 392 St. Jerome already accorded to the preacher of Antioch a place among his Viri illustres ("De Viris ill.", 129, in P.L., XXIII, 754), referring expressly to the great and successful activity of Chrysostom as a theological writer. From this same fact we may infer that during this time his fame had spread far beyond the limits of Antioch, and that he was well known in the Byzantine Empire, especially in the capital.

St. Chrysostom as Bishop of Constantinople

In the ordinary course of things Chrysostom might have become the successor of Flavian at Antioch. But on 27 September 397, Nectarius, Bishop of Constantinople, died. There was a general rivalry in the capital, openly or in secret, for the vacant see. After some months it was known, to the great disappointment of the competitors, that Emperor Areadius, at the suggestion of his minister Eutropius, had sent to the Prefect of Antioch to call John Chrysostom out of the town without the knowledge of the people, and to send him straight to Constantinople. In this sudden way Chrysostom was hurried to the capital, and ordained Bishop of Constantinople on 26 February, 398, in the presence of a great assembly of bishops, by Theophilus, Patriarch of Alexandria, who had been obliged to renounce the idea of securing the appointment of Isidore, his own candidate. The change for Chrysostom was as great as it was unexpected. His new position was not an easy one, placed as he was in the midst of an upstart metropolis, half Western, half Oriental, in the neighbourhood of a court in which luxury and intrigue always played the most prominent parts, and at the head of the clergy composed of most heterogeneous elements, and even (if not canonically, at least practically) at the head of the whole Byzantine episcopate. The first act of the new bishop was to bring about a reconciliation between Flavian and Rome. Constantinople itself soon began to feel the impulse of a new ecclesiastical life.

The necessity for reform was undeniable. Chrysostom began "sweeping the stairs from the top" (Palladius, op. cit., v). He called his oeconomus, and ordered him to reduce the expenses of the episcopal household; he put an end to the frequent banquets, and lived little less strictly than he had formerly lived as a priest and monk. With regard to the clergy, Chrysostom had at first to forbid them to keep in their houses syneisactoe, i.e. women housekeepers who had vowed virginity. He also proceeded against others who, by avarice or luxury, had given scandal. He had even to exclude from the ranks of the clergy two deacons, the one for murder and the other for adultery. Of the monks, too, who were very numerous even at that time at Constantinople, some had preferred to roam about aimlessly and without discipline. Chrysostom confined them to their monasteries. Finally he took care of the ecclesiastical widows. Some of them were living in a worldly manner: he obliged them either to marry again, or to observe the rules of decorum demanded by their state. After the clergy, Chrysostom turned his attention to his flock. As he had done at Antioch, so at Constantinople and with more reason, he frequently preached against the unreasonable extravagances of the rich, and especially against the ridiculous finery in the matter of dress affected by women whose age should have put them beyond such vanities. Some of them, the widows Marsa, Castricia, Eugraphia, known for such preposterous tastes, belonged to the court circle. It seems that the upper classes of Constantinople had not previously been accustomed to such language. Doubtless some felt the rebuke to be intended for themselves, and the offence given was the greater in proportion as the rebuke was the more deserved. On the other hand, the people showed themselves delighted with the sermons of their new bishop, and frequently applauded him in the church (Socrates, "Hist. eccl." VI). They never forgot his care for the poor and miserable, and that in his first year he had built a great hospital with the money he had saved in his household. But Chrysostom had also very intimate friends among the rich and noble classes. The most famous of these was Olympias, widow and deaconess, a relation of Emperor Theodosius, while in the Court itself there was Brison, first usher of Eudoxia, who assisted Chrysostom in instructing his choirs, and always maintained a true friendship for him. The empress herself was at first most friendly towards the new bishop. She followed the religious processions, attended his sermons, and presented silver candlesticks for the use of the churches (Socrates, op. cit., VI, 8; Sozomenus, op. cit., VIII, 8).

Unfortunately, the feelings of amity did not last. At first Eutropius, the former slave, now minister and consul, abused his influence. He deprived some wealthy persons of their property, and prosecuted others whom he suspected of being adversaries of rivals. More than once Chrysostom went himself to the minister (see "Oratio ad Eutropium" in P.G., Chrys. Op., III, 392) to remonstrate with him, and to warn him of the results of his own acts, but without success. Then the above-named ladies, who immediately surrounded the empress, probably did not hide their resentment against the strict bishop. Finally, the empress herself committed an injustice in depriving a widow of her vineyard (Marcus Diac., "Vita Porphyrii", V, no. 37, in P.G., LXV, 1229). Chrysostom interceded for the latter. But Eudoxia showed herself offended. Henceforth there was a certain coolness between the imperial Court and the episcopal palace, which, growing little by little, led to a catastrophe. It is impossible to ascertain exactly at what period this alienation first began; very probably it dated from the beginning of the year 401. But before this state of things became known to the public there happened events of the highest political importance, and Chrysostom, without seeking it, was implicated in them. These were the fall of Eutropius and the revolt of Gainas.

In January, 399, Eutropius, for a reason not exactly known, fell into disgrace. Knowing the feelings of the people and of his personal enemies, he fled to the church. As he had himself attempted to abolish the immunity of the ecclesiastical asylums not long before, the people seemed little disposed to spare him. But Chrysostom interfered, delivering his famous sermon on Eutropius, and the fallen minister was saved for the moment. As, however, he tried to escape during the night, he was seized, exiled, and some time later put to death. Immediately another more exciting and more dangerous event followed. Gainas, one of the imperial generals, had been sent out to subdue Tribigild, who had revolted. In the summer of 399 Gainas united openly with Tribigild, and, to restore peace, Arcadius had to submit to the most humiliating conditions. Gainas was named commander-in-chief of the imperial army, and even had Aurelian and Saturninus, two men of the highest rank at Constantinople, delivered over to him. It seems that Chrysostom accepted a mission to Gainas, and that, owing to his intervention, Aurelian and Saturninus were spared by Gainas, and even set at liberty. Soon afterwards, Gainas, who was an Arian Goth, demanded one of the Catholic churches at Constantinople for himself and his soldiers. Again Chrysostom made so energetic an opposition that Gainas yielded. Meanwhile the people of Constantinople had become excited, and in one night several thousand Goths were slain. Gainas however escaped, was defeated, and slain by the Huns. Such was the end within a few years of three consuls of the Byzantine Empire. There is no doubt that Chrysostom's authority had been greatly strengthened by the magnanimity and firmness of character he had shown during all these troubles. It may have been this that augmented the jealousy of those who now governed the empire -- a clique of courtiers, with the empress at their head. These were now joined by new allies issuing from the ecclesiastical ranks and including some provincial bishops -- Severian of Gabala, Antiochus of Ptolemais, and, for some time, Acacius of Beroea -- who preferred the attractions of the capital to residence in their own cities (Socrates, op. cit., VI, 11; Sozomenus, op. cit., VIII, 10). The most intriguing among them was Severian, who flattered himself that he was the rival of Chrysostom in eloquence. But so far nothing had transpired in public. A great change occurred during the absence of Chrysostom for several months from Constantinople. This absence was necessitated by an ecclesiastical affair in Asia Minor, in which he was involved. Following the express invitation of several bishops, Chrysostom, in the first months of 401, had come to Ephesus, where he appointed a new archbishop, and with the consent of the assembled bishops deposed six bishops for simony. After having passed the same sentence on Bishop Gerontius of Nicomedia, he returned to Constantinople.

Meanwhile disagreeable things had happened there. Bishop Severian, to whom Chrysostom seems to have entrusted the performance of some ecclesiastical functions, had entered into open enmity with Serapion, the archdeacon and oeconomus of the cathedral and the episcopal palace. Whatever the real reason may have been, Chrysostom, found the case so serious that he invited Severian to return to his own see. It was solely owing to the personal interference of Eudoxia, whose confidence Serapion possessed, that he was allowed to come back from Chalcedon, whither he had retired. The reconciliation which followed was, at least on the part of Severian, not a sincere one, and the public scandal had excited much ill-feeling. The effects soon became visible. When in the spring of 402, Bishop Porphyrius of Gaza (see Marcus Diac., "Vita Porphyrii", V, ed. Nuth, Bonn, 1897, pp. 11-19) went to the Court at Constantinople to obtain a favour for his diocese, Chrysostom answered that he could do nothing for him, since he was himself in disgrace with the empress. Nevertheless, the party of malcontents were not really dangerous, unless they could find some prominent and unscrupulous leader. Such a person presented himself sooner than might have been expected. It was the well-known Theophilus, Patriarch of Alexandria. He appeared under rather curious circumstances, which in no way foreshadowed the final result. Theophilus, toward the end of the year 402, was summoned by the emperor to Constantinople to apologize before a synod, over which Chrysostom should preside, for several charges, which were brought against him by certain Egyptian monks, especially by the so-called four "tall brothers". The patriarch, their former friend, had suddenly turned against them, and had them persecuted as Origenists (Palladius, "Dialogus", xvi; Socrates, op. cit., VI, 7; Sozomenus, op. cit., VIII, 12).

However, Theophilus was not easily frightened. He had always agents and friends at Constantinople, and knew the state of things and the feelings at the court. He now resolved to take advantage of them. He wrote at once to St. Epiphanius at Cyprus, requesting him to go to Constantinople and prevail upon Chrysostom at to condemn the Origenists. Epiphanius went. But when he found that Theophilus was merely using him for his own purposes, he left the capital, dying on his return in 403. At this time Chrysostom delivered a sermon against the vain luxury of women. It was reported to the empress as though she had been personally alluded to. In this way the ground was prepared. Theophilus at last appeared at Constantinople in June, 403, not alone, as he had been commanded, but with twenty-nine of his suffragan bishops, and, as Palladius (ch. viii) tells us, with a good deal of money and all sorts of gifts. He took his lodgings in one of the imperial palaces, and held conferences with all the adversaries of Chrysostom. Then he retired with his suffragans and seven other bishops to a villa near Constantinople, called epi dryn (see Ubaldi, "La Synodo ad Quercum", Turin, 1902). A long list of the most ridiculous accusations was drawn up against Chrysostom (see Photius, "Bibliotheca", 59, in P.G., CIII, 105-113), who, surrounded by forty-two archbishops and bishops assembled to judge Theophilus in accordance with the orders of the emperor, was now summoned to present himself and apologize. Chrysostom naturally refused to recognize the legality of a synod in which his open enemies were judges. After the third summons Chrysostom, with the consent of the emperor, was declared to be deposed. In order to avoid useless bloodshed, he surrendered himself on the third day to the soldiers who awaited him. But the threats of the excited people, and a sudden accident in the imperial palace, frightened the empress (Palladius, "Dialogus", ix). She feared some punishment from heaven for Chrysostom's exile, and immediately ordered his recall. After some hesitation Chrysostom re-entered the capital amid the great rejoicings of the people. Theophilus and his party saved themselves by flying from Constantinople. Chrysostom's return was in itself a defeat for Eudoxia. When her alarms had gone, her rancour revived. Two months afterwards a silver statue of the empress was unveiled in the square just before the cathedral. The public celebrations which attended this incident, and lasted several days, became so boisterous that the offices in the church were disturbed. Chrysostom complained of this to the prefect of the city, who reported to Eudoxia that the bishop had complained against her statue. This was enough to excite the empress beyond all bounds. She summoned Theophilus and the other bishops to come back and to depose Chrysostom again. The prudent patriarch, however, did not wish to run the same risk a second time. He only wrote to Constantinople that Chrysostom should be condemned for having re-entered his see in opposition to an article of the Synod of Antioch held in the year 341 (an Arian synod). The other bishops had neither the authority nor the courage to give a formal judgment. All they could do was to urge the emperor to sign a new decree of exile. A double attempt on Chrysostom's life failed. On Easter Eve, 404, when all the catechumens were to receive baptism, the adversaries of the bishop, with imperial soldiers, invaded the baptistery and dispersed the whole congregation. At last Arcadius signed the decree, and on 24 June, 404, the soldiers conducted Chrysostom a second time into exile.

Exile and Death

They had scarcely left Constantinople when a huge conflagration destroyed the cathedral, the senate-house, and other buildings. The followers of the exiled bishop were accused of the crime and prosecuted. In haste Arsacius, an old man, was appointed successor of Chrysostom, but was soon succeeded by the cunning Atticus. Whoever refused to enter into communion with them was punished by confiscation of property and exile. Chrysostom himself was conducted to Cucusus, a secluded and rugged place on the east frontier of Armenia, continually exposed to the invasions of the Isaurians. In the following year he had even to fly for some time to the castle of Arabissus to protect himself from these barbarians. Meanwhile he always maintained a correspondence with his friends and never gave up the hope of return. When the circumstances of his deposition were known in the West, the pope and the Italian bishops declared themselves in his favour. Emperor Honorius and Pope Innocent I endeavoured to summon a new synod, but their legates were imprisoned and then sent home. The pope broke off all communion with the Patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch (where an enemy of Chrysostom had succeeded Flavian), and Constantinople, until (after the death of Chrysostom) they consented to admit his name into the diptychs of the Church. Finally all hopes for the exiled bishop had vanished. Apparently he was living too long for his adversaries. In the summer, 407, the order was given to carry him to Pithyus, a place at the extreme boundary of the empire, near the Caucasus. One of the two soldiers who had to lead him caused him all possible sufferings. He was forced to make long marches, was exposed to the rays of the sun, to the rains and the cold of the nights. His body, already weakened by several severe illnesses, finally broke down. On 14 September the party were at Comanan in Pontus. In the morning Chrysostom had asked to rest there on the account of his state of health. In vain; he was forced to continue his march. Very soon he felt so weak that they had to return to Comana. Some hours later Chrysostom died. His last words were: Doxa to theo panton eneken (Glory be to God for all things) (Palladius, xi, 38). He was buried at Comana. On 27 January, 438, his body was translated to Constantinople with great pomp, and entombed in the church of the Apostles where Eudoxia had been buried in the year 404 (see Socrates, VII, 45; Constantine Prophyrogen., "Cæremoniale Aul Byz.", II, 92, in P.G., CXII, 1204 B).

II. THE WRITINGS OF ST. CHRYSOSTOM

Chrysostom has deserved a place in ecclesiastical history, not simply as Bishop of Constantinople, but chiefly as a Doctor of the Church. Of none of the other Greek Fathers do we possess so many writings. We may divide them into three portions, the "opuscula", the "homilies", and the "letters". (1) The chief "opuscula" all date from the earlier days of his literary activity. The following deal with monastical subjects: "Comparatio Regis cum Monacho" ("Opera", I, 387-93, in P.G., XLVII-LXIII), "Adhortatio ad Theodorum (Mopsuestensem?) lapsum" (ibid., 277-319), "Adversus oppugnatores vitae monasticae" (ibid., 319-87). Those dealing with ascetical subjects in general are the treatise "De Compunctione" in two books (ibid., 393-423), "Adhortatio ad Stagirium" in three books (ibid., 433-94), "Adversus Subintroductas" (ibid., 495-532), "De Virginitate" (ibid., 533-93), "De Sacerdotio" (ibid., 623-93). (2) Among the "homilies" we have to distinguish commentaries on books of Holy Scripture, groups of homilies (sermons) on special subjects, and a great number of single homilies. (a) The chief "commentaries" on the Old Testament are the sixty-seven homilies "On Genesis" (with eight sermons on Genesis, which are probably a first recension) (IV, 21 sqq., and ibid., 607 sqq.); fifty-nine homilies "On the Psalms" (4-12, 41, 43-49, 108-117, 119-150) (V, 39-498), concerning which see Chrys. Baur, "Der urspr ngliche Umfang des Kommentars des hl. Joh. Chrysostomus zu den Psalmen" in Chrysostomika, fase. i (Rome, 1908), 235-42, a commentary on the first chapters of "Isaias" (VI, 11 sqq.). The fragments on Job (XIII, 503-65) are spurious (see Haidacher, "Chrysostomus Fragmente" in Chrysostomika, I, 217 sq.); the authenticity of the fragments on the Proverbs (XIII, 659-740), on Jeremias and Daniel (VI, 193-246), and the Synopsis of the Old and the New Testament (ibid., 313 sqq.), is doubtful. The chief commentaries on the New Testament are first the ninety homilies on "St. Matthew" (about the year 390; VII), eighty-eight homilies on "St. John" (c. 389; VIII, 23 sqq. -- probably from a later edition), fifty-five homilies on "the Acts" (as preserved by stenographers, IX, 13 sqq.), and homilies "On all Epistles of St. Paul" (IX, 391 sqq.). The best and most important commentaries are those on the Psalms, on St. Matthew, and on the Epistle to the Romans (written c. 391). The thirty-four homilies on the Epistle to the Galatians also very probably comes to us from the hand of a second editor. (b) Among the "homilies forming connected groups", we may especially mention the five homilies "On Anna" (IV, 631-76), three "On David" (ibid., 675-708), six "On Ozias" (VI, 97-142), eight "Against the Jews" (II, 843-942), twelve "De Incomprehensibili Dei Natur " (ibid., 701-812), and the seven famous homilies "On St. Paul" (III, 473-514). (c) A great number of "single homilies" deal with moral subjects, with certain feasts or saints. (3) The "Letters" of Chrysostom (about 238 in number: III, 547 sqq.) were all written during his exile. Of special value for their contents and intimate nature are the seventeen letters to the deaconess Olympias. Among the numerous "Apocrypha" we may mention the liturgy attributed to Chrysostom, who perhaps modified, but did not compose the ancient text. The most famous apocryphon is the "Letter to C sarius" (III, 755-760). It contains a passage on the holy Eucharist which seems to favour the theory of "impanatio", and the disputes about it have continued for more than two centuries. The most important spurious work in Latin is the "Opus imperfectum", written by an Arian in the first half of the fifth century (see Th. Paas, "Das Opus impefectum in Matthæum", Tübingen, 1907).

III. CHRYSOSTOM'S THEOLOGICAL IMPORTANCE

Chrysostom as Orator

The success of Chrysostom's preaching is chiefly due to his great natural facility of speech, which was extraordinary even to Greeks, to the abundance of his thoughts as well as the popular way of presenting and illustrating them, and, last but not least, the whole-hearted earnestness and conviction with which he delivered the message which he felt had been given to him. Speculative explanation did not attract his mind, nor would they have suited the tastes of his hearers. He ordinarily preferred moral subjects, and very seldom in his sermons followed a regular plan, nor did he care to avoid digressions when any opportunity suggested them. In this way, he is by no means a model for our modern thematic preaching, which, however we may regret it, has to such a great extent supplanted the old homiletic method. But the frequent outbursts of applause among his congregation may have told Chrysostom that he was on the right path.

Chrysostom as an exegete

As an exegete Chrysostom is of the highest importance, for he is the chief and almost the only successful representative of the exegetical principles of the School of Antioch. Diodorus of Tarsus had initiated him into the grammatico-historical method of that school, which was in strong opposition to the eccentric, allegorical, and mystical interpretation of Origen and the Alexandrian School. But Chrysostom rightly avoided pushing his principles to that extreme to which, later on, his friend Theodore of Mopsuestia, the teacher of Nestorius, carried them. He did not even exclude all allegorical or mystical explanations, but confined them to the cases in which the inspired author himself suggests this meaning.

Chrysostom as Dogmatic Theologian

As has already been said, Chrysostom's was not a speculative mind, nor was he involved in his lifetime in great dogmatic controversies. Nevertheless it would be a mistake to underrate the great theological treasures hidden in his writings. From the very first he was considered by the Greeks and Latins as a most important witness to the Faith. Even at the Council of Ephesus (431) both parties, St. Cyril and the Antiochians, already invoked him on behalf of their opinions, and at the Seventh Ecumenical Council, when a passage of Chrysostom had been read in favour of the veneration of images, Bishop Peter of Nicomedia cried out: "If John Chrysostom speaks in the way of the images, who would dare to speak against them?" which shows clearly the progress his authority had made up to that date.

Strangely enough, in the Latin Church, Chrysostom was still earlier invoked as an authority on matters of faith. The first writer who quoted him was Pelagius, when he wrote his lost book "De Naturæ" against St. Augustine (c. 415). The Bishop of Hippo himself very soon afterwards (421) claimed Chrysostom for the Catholic teaching in his controversy with Julian of Eclanum, who had opposed to him a passage of Chrysostom (from the "Hom. ad Neophytos", preserved only in Latin) as being against original sin (see Chrys. Baur, "L'entrée littéraire de St. Jean Chrys. dans le monde latin" in the "Revue d'histoire ecclés.", VIII, 1907, 249-65). Again, at the time of the Reformation there arose long and acrid discussions as to whether Chrysostom was a Protestant or a Catholic, and these polemics have never wholly ceased. It is true that Chrysostom has some strange passages on our Blessed Lady (see Newman, "Certain difficulties felt by Anglicans in Catholic Teachings", London, 1876, pp. 130 sqq.), that he seems to ignore private confession to a priest, that there is no clear and any direct passage in favour of the primacy of the pope. But it must be remembered that all the respective passages contain nothing positive against the actual Catholic doctrine. On the other side Chrysostom explicitly acknowledges as a rule of faith tradition (XI, 488), as laid down by the authoritative teaching of the Church (I, 813). This Church, he says, is but one, by the unity of her doctrine (V, 244; XI, 554); she is spread over the whole world, she is the one Bride of Christ (III, 229, 403; V, 62; VIII, 170). As to Christology, Chrysostom holds clearly that Christ is God and man in one person, but he never enters into deeper examination of the manner of this union. Of great importance is his doctrine regarding the Eucharist. There cannot be the slightest doubt that he teaches the Real Presence, and his expressions on the change wrought by the words of the priest are equivalent to the doctrine of transubstantiation (see Naegle, "Die Eucharistielehre des hl. Joh. Chry.", 74 sq.).

Portions of this entry are taken from The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1907.
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