The Church commemorates today Venerable John Climacus of Sinai.
Thanks to his prominent position in the Orthodox Tradition the Holy Fathers were prompted to commemorate the saint not only on March 30 but also on the Fourth Sunday of the Great Lent, that is, yesterday’s Sunday, so that the saint’s writings and example can benefit the faithful and to guide them properly in their spiritual struggle of the Great Lent.
Venerable John Sinaites is best known as John Climacus, for writing the renowned book The Ladder, a diamond among the ascetic patristic texts and a masterpiece of literature.
He came from a wealthy family and was well educated. Desiring to devote himself to Christ, he became a monk on Mount Sinai and soon became the abbot of that monastery there. However, he preferred the solitary life and stayed until his death in the desert place called Thola. The Ladder is the author’s response to his disciple John, the abbot of Raithu Monastery, who had asked his spiritual father for guidance on how he and the brotherhood he led could attain spiritual perfection.
The Ladder of Divine Ascent is made up of thirty parts, which, as spiritual steps, lead from earth to heaven. Starting with the renunciation, that is, the decision to renounce the worldly goods and the total dedication to Christ, the holy author concludes with the virtue of love, which everyone who has conquered it has already united with God.
The Ladder is one of the most moralistic books and, for this reason, has been greatly appreciated by the Church. It is a good idea to study it and, according to its writings, to be humble, always guided by the Church and always with proper discernment.
Source: Church of Cyprus