St. John Chrysostom was a popular preacher and homilist during the fourth century. His ability to amaze his listeners with eloquent and convincing speeches earned him the nick-name “Golden-mouthed” or Chrysostom. Fittingly he is the patron saint of preachers, speakers, orators, and lecturers. St. John Chrysostom preached strongly against immorality especially against the mistreatment of the poor. For this he was not very well liked by the nobles in his diocese. Catechists will find his sermon on baptism in Edward Yarnold’s The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation: The Origins of the RCIA very inspirational and telling of the Doctor of the Church’s talent.
I adapted the following prayer for use on the feast day of St. John Chrysostom (September 13th). It is called the Prayer of Thanksgiving.
St. John Chrysostom Prayer Of Thanksgiving
Side 1: What praise, of what hymn, or what thanksgiving, or what recompense shall we offer unto you, the Only God, who loves mankind?
Side 2: For when we were condemned to destruction and immersed in our sins, you did bestow freedom upon us, and have given us the immortal and heavenly nourishment of the Body and Blood of Christ.
Side 1: Therefore we pray: Deliver us from judgment, together with you servants who minister unto you.
Side 2: Keep us and them in honor and holy living; and those who pray with us, and who have been partakers of your Mystical Table, preserve free of condemnation unto their last breath.
Side 1: May it be unto them a sanctification of soul and body, unto the keeping of you Commandments; and thus may we be granted to attain your Heavenly Kingdom, together with all who have been well-pleasing unto you from all ages.
Catechist: Through the prayers and intercessions of our holy, all-pure, most blessed and glorious Lady, the birth-giver of God and Ever-Virgin Mary, of Saint N. whose memory we keep, and of all your Saints, now and ever, and unto ages of ages.
(This prayer is attributed to St. John Chrysostom and adapted for catechetical use.)
The following prayer for the hours of the day is probably the more popular prayer by St. John Chrysostom. Each verse of this prayer is meant to be said during each hour of the day:
Prayers According to the Hours of the Day and Night
1:00. O Lord, deprive me not of Thy heavenly blessings;
2:00. O Lord, deliver me from eternal torment;
3:00. O Lord, if I have sinned in my mind or thought, in word deed, forgive me.
4:00. O Lord, deliver me from every ignorance and heedlessness, from pettiness of the soul and stony hardness of heart;
5:00. O Lord, deliver me from every temptation;
6:00. O Lord, enlighten my heart darkened by evil desires;
7:00. O Lord, I, being a human being, have sinned; do Thou, being God, forgive me in Thy lovingkindness, for Thou knowest the weakness of my soul.
8:00. O Lord, send down Thy grace to help me, that I may glorify Thy holy Name;
9:00. O Lord Jesus Christ, inscribe me, Thy servant, in the Book of Life, and grant me a blessed end;
10:00. O Lord my God, even if I have done nothing good in Thy sight, yet grant me, according to Thy grace, that I may make a start in doing good.
11:00. O Lord, sprinkle on my heart the dew of Thy grace;
12:00. O Lord of heaven and earth, remember me, Thy sinful servant, cold of heart and impure, in Thy Kingdom.
1:00 (13:00). O Lord, receive me in repentance;
2:00 (14:00). O Lord, leave me not;
3:00 (15:00). O Lord, save me from temptation;
4:00 (16:00). O Lord, grant me pure thoughts;
5:00 (17:00). O Lord, grant me tears of repentance, remembrance of death, and the sense of peace;
6:00 (18:00). O Lord, grant me mindfulness to confess my sins;
7:00 (19:00). O Lord, grant me humility, charity, and obedience;
8:00 (20:00). O Lord, grant me tolerance, magnanimity, and gentleness;
9:00 (21:00). O Lord, implant in me the root of all blessings: the fear of Thee in my heart;
10:00 (22:00). O Lord, vouchsafe that I may love Thee with all my heart and soul, and that I may obey in all things Thy will;
11:00 (23:00). O Lord, shield me from evil persons and devils and passions and all other lawless matters;
12:00 (24:00). O Lord, Who knowest Thy creation and that which Thou hast willed for it; may Thy will also be fulfilled in me, a sinner, for Thou art blessed forevermore. Amen.