2007 is the 1600th anniversary of the repose of St. John Chrysostom, the “Golden-mouth.”  For the Orthodox Church, St. John is one of the most brilliant lights among the fathers and saints who adorn her history. He is best known for his sermons and commentaries on the Scriptures, fearless leadership as a chief hierarch and shepherd of the Church, selfless care for the poor and sick, and for the Liturgy that bears his name. The service for the feast of the Three Hierarchs extols him as an equal to St. Gregory the Theologian and St. Basil the Great. Yet St. John is not noted as an exponent of the dogmas of the faith.

What then is St. John Chrysostom’s place among the fathers of the Church? This was the theme of the Symposium held in St. Louis, September 28-30, 2007. Our distinguished speakers offered their insights on this topic.

Concluding the Symposium, on Saturday evening and Sunday morning there was a grand, hierarchical Vigil (Vespers and Matins) and Liturgy at St. John Chrysostom Russian Orthodox Church in House Springs, MO.  His Eminence, Metropolitan Laurus, First Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad, presided, assisted by other bishops and many clergy.

Sunday, September 17/30, was the Sunday after the Elevation of the Cross. It is on the Feast of the Elevation of the Cross, 1600 years ago, that St. John Chrysostom reposed.

Grace shining forth from thy mouth like a beacon hath illumined the universe, and disclosed to the world treasures of uncovetousness, and shown us the heights by humility; but while instructing us by thy words, O Father John Chrysostom, intercede with the word, Christ our God, to save our souls.