15 Quotes from the Theological Poetry of St Gregory of Nazianzus


The morning comes, and I greet the Lord, resolving to make no compromise with sin. Instead, I consecrate the day to You, abiding firm and master of the passions.

My lot is God; my destiny is to endure many sorrows, languishing here from a cruel illness. Do not cease in tormenting me, evil one, while there is still time! Soon I will rejoice leaving you with all the grave calamities.

The word is a bold one, but I will say it. If I were not yours, o Christ, I would be offended.

It is better, being good, to remain evil in the opinion of others, than, being evil, to have the glory of a good person and to be in people’s eyes a deceiving coffin, filled with fetidity from the rotting dead, yet shining with whiteness and pleasing colors on the outside.

Prepare yourself for eternity as soon as possible, inspiring your precious soul with the Word.

Truly this is your vocation, my soul. Direct your attention to the one God!

Your word is medicine to me.

Is sweet really the taste that saving medicine must necessarily have? Many have been saved by bitterness, while sweet things often do more harm than good.

It is a bad slave that tends to show respect to his master only when he smiles,  regarding him as evil when he strikes.

Constantly train your tongue and your mind in God’s words! God rewards these labors either by revealing some of their hidden meaning, or, even better, by granting you contrition while reading these great commandments of the pure God; or, thirdly, by drawing your thought away from the earthly things.

One with healthy legs is a big support for the lame.

Your exploits are not lasting; and the reward is higher than the labors.

Avoid bad seed so as to be able to reap a good harvest.

The words of piety should not  be silenced.

Do not stop in your path, seeing that the wicked lead a quiet life; neither let your heart be troubled, seeing that the good are suffering. This is the game of life; where nothing should matter to you but the end.


Translated by The Catalogue of Good Deeds
Source: Collected Works of St Gregory the Theologian Creations, Volume 5, Poems

About the author

The Editor of the Catalog of Good Deeds.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Know everything about Orthodoxy? We can tell you a bit more!

Subscribe for our weekly newsletter not to miss the most interesting articles on our blog.

Spelling error report

The following text will be sent to our editors: