Hagia Sophia

"You Cannot Banish Me"

by Father Brian J. Soliven on Tuesday September 13, 2022

Have you ever found it hard to speak up for your faith? It happens to the best of us. Imagine now if you had to confront the most powerful people on planet earth. This was the case for St. John Chrysostom, the 4th century Archbishop of Constantinople. The Roman emperor and empress wanted to silence him for preaching the Gospel. Many would back down to such power. Not St. John. Their conversation went like this:

You cannot banish me, for this world is my Father’s house,” said John.
“But I will kill you,” the empress said.
No, you cannot, for my life is hid with Christ in God.”
“I will take away your treasures,” said Eudoxia.
No, you cannot, for my treasure is in heaven and my heart is there.”
“But I will drive you away from your friends and you will have no one left,” Eudoxia responded.
No, you cannot,” said John, “for I have a Friend in heaven from whom you cannot separate me. I defy you. For there is nothing you can do to harm me.”