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St. John Cassian

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Feastday: July 23
Birth: 360
Death: 435

Eastern monk and theological writer. He went to Palestine in 380 with a companion, Germanus, and became a monk in Egypt. In 400 he entered into the discipleship of St. John Chrysostom, going to Rome to defend the much-oppressed saint before Pope Innocent I. Ordained in Rome, John started monasteries in southern France, near Marseilles, thus helping to pioneer monasticism in Europe. His two main writings, Institutes of the Monastic Life and Conferences on the Egyptian Monks, were much praised by St. Benedict and were long influential; the former had a direct impact upon Benedict during the time that he was composing his famed Rule. John also authored the work De Incarnatione Doniini, in seven books, at the. behest of Pope Leo I the Great so as to inform the Western Church of the details of the teachings of the heresiarch Nestorius. While never canonized officially in the West, John has long been considered a saint among the Eastern Churches.


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