a greater work than raising the dead

“Feeding the hungry is a greater work than raising the dead.” – Saint John Chrysostom

John Chrysostom (c. 349 – 407) was an important Early Church Father and the Archbishop of Constantinople. He is best known for his preaching and public speaking as well as his denunciation of abuse of authority by both ecclesiastical and political leaders.

His concern for the poor can be seen in many of his homilies as well as other writings. This is the first of several quotes I will be sharing over the next few days and weeks.

What I like about this audacious statement by the Archbishop is that he unabashedly puts feeding the hungry above one of the greatest miracles of Jesus. Our ministry with the poor is not something to be tacked on to our faith as a “nice religious activity.”

Chrysostom  declares that  feeding the hungry is greater and more powerful than working miracles. Walking along side the poor and hungry has must be an integral part of authentic spirituality.