Today in the Episcopal Church calendar we remember St. John Chrysostom, whose years were 354 to 407. John was known as a good priest and pastor, but primarily he had no small reputation as a good preacher. This guy could turn a phrase. He had a way with words. "Chrysostom" was not actually his name, but more of a nickname meaning "Golden Mouth."
If John had a golden mouth, he apparently had a spine of steel. He served as the Patriarch of the Roman capitol city of Constantinople long before it became known as Istanbul, Turkey. As such, he was in close contact with the powers that were. The Empress Eudoxia took offense at his preaching. She thought he had quit preaching and gone to criticizing her private life, so she exiled John twice. The second time that John was banished he died in tragic circumstances.
From the Book of Common Prayer, page 126, we have this lovely prayer attributed to St. John Chrysostom:
"Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplication to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them. Fulfill now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen."
The Rev. Linda McCloud
The Episcopal Church of Our Savior at Honey Creek