Saint John Chrysostom

Image - Adam Hochemsky: Saint John Chrysostom (copper plate).

Saint John Chrysostom (Святий Іван Золотоустий; Sviatyi Ivan Zolotoustyi), b ca 347, d 407. An eminent preacher and church father. In 398 he was elected Patriarch of Constantinople, but in 403 he was deposed. His many sermons (and those attributed to him) circulated widely in 12th– to 17th-century Ukraine in Old Bulgarian and Old Ukrainian translations. Several manuscripts of both ‘full’ (138 sermons) and ‘short’ (67 sermons) editions of his sermons have survived. The sermons were usually didactic in tone, and exhorted people to attend church and participate in the liturgy; to observe fasts; and to revere their parents, elders, and teachers. They also encouraged believers to be generous, honest, sincere, and charitable. The Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom, which is the most commonly used liturgy in the Ukrainian church, was probably not composed by him.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 4 (1993).]

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