Three Holy Hierarchs: St Basil the Great, St Gregory the Theologian, and St John Chrysostom

Three Holy Hierarchs: St Basil the Great, St Gregory the Theologian, and St John Chrysostom

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In the 11th century AD, there was a growing dispute among the faithful over which of these great saints was greater than the others. This led to fractures, with some favouring the teachings of St. Basil over St. Gregory and vise-versa. In order to bring an end to this pointless quarrel, all three saints appeared to the Bishop of Euchaita. They told him that the glory they have at the throne of God is equal. The three Hierarchs also told him to compose a common service for the three of them, which he did.

The three holy hierarchs are thus commemorated together, on January 30 in the new calendar and February 12 in the old calendar.

In Greece, the Three Hierarchs are the patron saints of learning. The Greek churches celebrate the Greek alphabet on the same day that they celebrate the Three Hierarchs. Not only were these saints protectors of the purity of the Orthodox Faith, but they also were promoters of the importance of education. On this day, it is customary to give school children books. Another idea is to give awards for excellence.

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Chris Vlahonasios

Chris Vlahonasios is a law graduate from Victoria University and Orthodox media writer for TRANSFIGURE Media.