Saturday, September 13, 2003

Some wise words from St. John Chrysostom, whose memorial is today. He was the patriarch of Constantinople in his day, and called the Golden Mouth because he was.

Do you fast?
Give me proof of it by your works.

If you see someone who is poor, take pity on that person.
If you see a friend being honored, do not be envious.
Do not let only your mouth fast, but also the eyes, and the feet, and the hands and all the member of our bodies.

Let the hands fast, by being free of avarice.
Let the feet fast, by ceasing to run after sin.
Let the eyes fast, by disciplining them not to glare at that which is sinful.
Let the ears by not listening to evil talk and gossip.
Let the mouth fast from foul words and unjust criticism.

For what good is it if we abstain from birds and fishes,
but bite and devour our brothers and sisters?


and:

Be ashamed when you sin, don't be ashamed when you repent. Sin is the wound, repentance is the medicine. Sin is followed by shame; repentance is followed by boldness. Satan has overturned this order and given boldness to sin and shame to repentance.

and:

There would be no need for sermons, if our lives were shining; there would be no need for words, if we bore witness with our deeds. There would be no pagans, if we were true Christians.
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