Saint Maximus the Confessor

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Born to the Byzantine nobility. Chief secretary to Emperor Heraclius, a post he resigned to become a monk at Chrysopolis. Spiritual student of Saint Sophronius. Abbot of Chrysopolis. His community broke up in 626 due to Persian invasion. Maximus fled to Alexandria, Egypt, then to Carthage, and then Rome, Italy. Worked with Pope Martin I against Monothelist heresy, and attended the Lateran Council of 649.

Falsely accused of treason due to his defense of orthodox Christianity, he was arrested and forcibly returned to Constantinople. He spent years in prison misery, and at age 82 received his final sentence: he was flogged, his tongue cut out, his right hand cut off, he was exhibited in the streets as an example to the people, and was sent into exile at Skhemeris on the Black Sea, where he died soon after. He is best remembered today for his mystical, ascetical, and theological writings, and for his steadfast belief that the purpose of all history was the Incarnation.

Born

Died

  • 13 August 662 at Batum near the Black Sea of natural causes
  • strange lights reported hovering near his tomb

Canonized

Additional Information

Readings

The extremities of the earth, and all in every part of it who purely and rightly confess the Lord look directly towards the most holy Roman Church and its confession and faith, as it were to a sun of unfailing light, awaiting from it the bright radiance of the sacred dogmas of our Fathers according to what the six inspired and holy councils have purely and piously decreed, declaring most expressly the symbol of faith. For from the coming down of the incarnate Word amongst us, all the Churches in every part of the world have held that greatest Church alone as their base and foundation, seeing that according to the promise of Christ our Saviour, the gates of hell do never prevail against it, that it has the keys of a right confession and faith in Him, that it opens the true and only religion to such as approach with piety, and shuts up and locks every heretical mouth that speaks injustice against the Most High. - Saint Maximus To harbor no envy, no anger, no resentment against an offender is still not to have charity for him. It is possible, without any charity, to avoid rendering evil for evil. But to render, spontaneously, good for evil – such belongs to a perfect spiritual love. - Saint Maximus

MLA Citation

  • “Saint Maximus the Confessor“. Saints.SQPN.com. 17 July 2014. Web. 31 July 2014. <>