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Catholic Culture Liturgical Living
Catholic Culture Liturgical Living

56—John of Damascus: Last Witness to a Lost World

By Mike Aquilina ( bio - articles - email ) | Jan 25, 2022 | In Way of the Fathers (Podcast)

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John of Damascus, the last of the Fathers, was born into a world newly conquered. In the seventh century, many lands that were once home to Eastern Christianity, had fallen to the invading armies of Arab Muslims. John’s father and grandfather, both devout Christians, served as treasury officials for the Muslim caliphate. So John was able to provide a rare outsider’s view of Islam when it was new on the world scene. In Christian history he is known as the great defender of the practice of venerating images. In more than a millennium, his compact, complete treatises on the subject have never been surpassed. But his work includes much more: sermons, hymns, and a handy compendium of philosophy and theology. John’s life is a brilliant closing act of the Era of the Fathers. This is the final episode of season 1 of this podcast. Next time we meet, we’ll launch season two by exploring particular themes and stories from the time of the early Church.

LINKS

John of Damascus, Apologia Against Those Who Decry Holy Images
https://sourcebooks.fordham.edu/basis/johndamascus-images.asp#PART%20I

John of Damascus, Three Sermons on the Assumption
https://ccel.org/ccel/damascus/icons/icons.i.vii.html

John of Damascus, An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, Books I-II
https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/fathers/view.cfm?recnum=2857

John of Damascus, An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, Books III-IV https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/fathers/view.cfm?recnum=2858

Mike Aquilina’s website https://fathersofthechurch.com

Mike Aquilina’s books https://catholicbooksdirect.com/writer/mike-aquilina/

Theme music: Gaudeamus (Introit for the Feast of All Saints), sung by Jeff Ostrowski. Courtesy of Corpus Christi Watershed http://www.ccwatershed.org

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Mike Aquilina is a popular author working in the area of Church history, especially patristics. He is executive vice-president and trustee of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, a contributing editor of Angelus (magazine) and general editor of the Reclaiming Catholic History Series from Ave Maria Press. See full bio.

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