Commemorated on March 3
The Holy Catholicos John IV (Chrysostom) led the Apostolic Church of Georgia from approximately 980 to 1001.
Catholicos Basil III’s “Story of St. Shio’s Miracles” describes how the hitherto childless parents of St. John prayed at length to St. Shio of Mgvime. After the birth of John, his God-fearing parents sent him to be raised at Shio-Mgvime Monastery.
There he acquired the sanctity and wisdom for which he would later be called “Chrysostom,” meaning “golden mouth” in Greek. By this name he has been known throughout the history of the Georgian Church.
There is yet another John called “Chrysostom” who was also a Catholicos, from 1033 to 1049. This John was a disciple of Holy Catholicos-Patriarch Melchizedek I and his successor as chief shepherd of the Georgian Church.
His life and labors were full of the same holiness as those of the holy catholicos John who is commemorated on this day. For this reason John IV and John V are often erroneously believed to be one and the same person.
© 2006 St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood.