Saint John Maron
|Maronite Patriarch of Antioch|
Sirmaniyah or Sarmin, present Syria
Kfarhy, near Batroun, Lebanon
|Venerated in||Maronite Church|
Roman Catholic Church
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John Maron (Arabic: يوحنا مارون, Youhana Maroun; Latin: Ioannes Maronus) (born in 628 in Sirmaniyah or Sarmin, present Syria – died in 707 in Kfarhy, Lebanon), was a Syriac monk, and the first Maronite Patriarch. He is revered as a saint by the Maronite and Roman Catholic Churches, and is commemorated on March 2. He died and was buried in Kfarhy near Batroun, in Lebanon, where a shrine is dedicated to him.
John was born in Sarum, a town located south of the city of Antioch. He was the son of Agathon and Anohamia. He was called John the Sarumite since his father was governor of Sarum. His paternal grandfather, Prince Alidipas, was the nephew of Carloman, a Frankish Prince, and governed Antioch. John was educated in Antioch and the Monastery of Saint Maron, studying mathematics, sciences, philosophy, theology, philology and scripture. He became a monk at the monastery, adding the name Maron to his own.
John studied Greek and patrology in Constantinople. Returning to Saint Maron's, he wrote on such diverse topics as teaching, rhetoric, the sacraments, management of Church property, legislative techniques, and liturgy. He composed the Eucharistic Prayer which still bears his name. As a young priest he engaged himself in ecumenical debates with the Monophysites. Noted as a teacher and preacher, he explained the doctrine of the Council of Chalcedon (which focused on the nature of Jesus as both God and human), wrote a series of letters to the faithful against Monothelitism which Beit-Marun had adopted, and then travelled Syria to explain the heresy.
The first Maronite Patriarch
The Patriarch of Antioch, Anastasius II was martyred in 609. With the ongoing Byzantine–Sasanian War and general unrest in the area, Constantinople began to appoint a series of titular patriarchs. Maronite sources give the date of John Maron's election to Patriarch of Antioch and All the East as 685. John received the approval of Pope Sergius I, and became the first Maronite Patriarch.
John Maron works are in Syriac:
- On Faith
- Questions to the Monophysites
- Michael Breydy: Johannes Maron. In: Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL). Band 3, Bautz, Herzberg 1992, ISBN 3-88309-035-2, Sp. 480–482.
- Siméon Vailhé, «Origines religieuses des Maronites», Échos d'Orient, t. IV, 1900-1901, n° 2, p. 96-102, et n° 3, p. 154-162.
- Michel Breydy, Jean Maron. Expose de la foi et autres opuscules. Syr. 209. CSCO (Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium), Bd. 407, Peeters, Louvain 1988
|Catholic Church titles|
| Maronite Patriarchs of Antioch