Friday, December 4, 2015


He is famous in three areas. First, he is known for his writings against the iconoclasts, who opposed the veneration of images. Paradoxically, it was the Eastern Christian emperor Leo who forbade the practice, and it was because John lived in Muslim territory that his enemies could not silence him. Second, he is famous for his treatise, Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, a summary of the Greek Fathers (of which he became the last). It is said that this book is for Eastern schools what the Summa of Aquinas became for the West. Thirdly, he is known as a poet, one of the two greatest of the Eastern Church, the other being Romanus the Melodist. His devotion to the Blessed Mother and his sermons on her feasts are well known. 


Lady! Queen! All-holy Mother! 
Christ my God was born of thee! 
In thy cause and for thy image
This right hand was lost to me. 

Why the Lion raged and ravened 
Thou in heaven above dost know; 
Help me, Lady! heal me quickly, 
Here before thee lying low!

Wonders oft at thy sweet pleading
Hath thy Son vouchsafed before; 
Heal my hand and let it praise Him–
Thee and Him for evermore!

Of His Faith and of thy honour
Still the champion let it be! 
What thou askest thou obtainest;
Christ my God was born of thee! 

- St John Damascene - 

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