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MEMORIAL ST JOHN CHRYSOSTOM WEDNESDAY TWENTY-THIRD WEEK ORDINARY TIME, SEPTEMBER 13, 2023






Reading 1

But now you must put them all away:

anger, fury, malice, slander,

and obscene language out of your mouths.


REFLECTION


As I sit here in adoration, I am reminded of where I am. I can walk in anytime, communicate with the King and He be happy to sit down and talk with me.


Our conversations with God don't have to be stirring, or persuasive or having to explain it all to Him. He knows the longing of our hearts, the foolishness of our thoughts and actions and how much He loves us.


Why does it take "courage" to talk with someone and yet, it is easy to talk with our Creator, our King, our Father? Because He loves me..... and you. Therefore, I can place all my hope and trust in the presence of God who is Love.


St John Chrysostom was very much aware of His Love. Today we celebrate his Memorial. He had the remarkable ability to communicate profound theological concepts through his preaching. He was sophisticated in his intelligent and theological writings yet able to talk and communicate to the common folk through practical and persuasive preaching.


He earned the name, Chrysostom, meaning "golden mouthed". He spoke eloquently on moral and ethical teachings: helping the underprivileged, living good moral lives, putting away anger, malice, slander and doing away with the facade of who we want people to think we are and allowing us to be seen as who we really are. He addressed issues such as virtue, personal conduct and social justice; offering practical advice and guidance.


As a monk he lived in a hermitage working on self discipline and self denial. As a deacon, he witnessed the challenges and struggles faced by the people. And as a priest (ordained 386 AD) he perfected his role as preacher, theologian and spiritual leader. As Archbishop of Constantinople he attempted reform of the clergy and addressed corruption and ethical living with the aristocracy. He advocated for the clergy to be humble and simple and for the regals to do away with material greed, lavish lifestyle, and be held accountable for their deeds.


As a Church Father, his teachings played a significant role in shaping Christian theology. His moral and ethical guidance and teachings were about sincerity, modesty, compassion and social justice. He provided concrete guidance how to live out one's faith in daily life.


He is an example of one accessible to a wide audience. No airs but reaching out to all from all walks of life.


As one would expect, his stances earned him enemies within the Church and in the royal courts. Many of the clergy and the imperial court resisted change and he was exiled from Constantinople, dying from mistreatment by soldiers in Turkey, 407 AD.


We are witnessing nothing different now as in St John Chrysostom's time. Let us continue to pray for Bishops and priests to be bold and speak the truth. PAPA Prayer for Priests.


His works include the following Homilies: on the Gospel of Matthew, on Genesis, on the Psalms, on biblical books, on Acts, Romans, Corinthians, Ephesians, and Colossians, on Marriage and Family, on Charity and Social Justice, on Repentance, on Lazarus and the rich man, on the Annunciation, Ascension and Pentecost.


For more details on his life, accomplishments and death, please read this article.


"Genuine faith should be evident

in one's deeds and conduct."

(St John Chrysostom)


God bless you.


Hogan, Cathleen F., kindle edition, The Life and Legacy of Saint John Chrysostom, 2023.


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