Above: Triumph of Orthodoxy Icon
Image in the Public Domain
SAINT THEOPHANES THE CHRONICLER (DIED 817)
Defender of Icons
St. Theophanes the Chronicler came from a wealthy family in Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire. He grew up in the household of Emperor Constantine V (reigned 741-775), a supporter of Iconoclasm. This position earned Constantine V the hostility of many clerics, hence his Greek nickname Kopranymos, or “dung-named,” for supposedly defecating during his baptism. Scatological insults have long existed, even among some professional religious people. The saint and his wife separated by mutual agreement; she became a nun and he a monk. He built monasteries on Kalonymos Island and Mount Sigriana. The saint became abbot at the latter in six years.
St. Theophanes attended the Second Council of Nicea in787, opposing Iconoclasm. This position brought him into conflict with Emperor Leo the Armenian (reigned 813-820), an Iconoclast. The saint suffered from a scourging, two years of imprisonment, and banishment to Samothrace, where he died on March 12, 817, soon after arriving. Ill treatment in prison caused the saint’s death.
The saint carries the nickname “the Chronicler” because of his history of the years 284-813.
KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR
DECEMBER 9, 2011 COMMON ERA
THE FEAST OF THE HOLY MEN OF THE OLD TESTAMENT
whose blessed Son became poor that we through his poverty might be rich:
Deliver us from an inordinate love of this world,
that we, inspired by the devotion of your servant Saint Theophanes the Chronicler,
may serve you with singleness of heart,
and attain to the riches of the age to come;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Song of Songs 8:6-7
Psalm 34 or 34:1-8
Luke 12:33-37 or Luke 9:57-62
–Adapted from The Book of Common Prayer (1979), pages 249 and 927
Revised on December 23, 2016