John Chrysostom & Severian of Gabala: Homilists, Exegetes & Theologians (7-9 Nov, 2016; Leuven)

Thanks to the scholarship of the past decades, including quite a few text-editions, Severian of Gabala is more and more emerging as homilist, theologian and biblical exegete. Though  John Chrysostom’s works have been studied much more frequently, here too significant progress has been made during the last decades. Given this situation, the time is ripe for applying a comparative perspective to the work of both authors. The influence of “Antiochene theology” on both, coupled to their being active in Constantinople together and their dialogue with the same cultural and theological context and tradition, provides enough basis to make such an endeavor promising. Besides this comparative perspective one would also hope that this conference may further the understanding of the writings and thought of both authors individually.

An important focus of the conference will be on Severian’s Hexaemeron Commentary (CPG 4194) and John Chrysostom’s Homilies on Genesis (CPG 4409 and 4410). This will enable us to confront the exegetic and homiletic strategies of both authors vis-à-vis the same authoritative text. How do they reflect on the creation of the world, on the status of human beings and their potential for living a moral life? How do they relate the protological perspective with an echatological one? Which strategies do they adopt for their exegesis of Genesis and for communicating their message to their audiences?

The conference will be structured around the following themes:

(1) John Chrysostom and Severian as homilists (use of rhetoric, preacher-audience)

(2) John Chrysostom and Severian as exegetes (use and interpretation of Scripture)

(3) John Chrysostom and Severian as theologians (content and theological style)

(4) A state of the art on Severian of Gabala

(5) Studies on individual sermons


Confirmed speakers: P. Augustin (IRHT, Paris), C. Bandt (Humboldt Universität, Berlin),

  1. Mayer (ACU, Brisbane), R. Regtuit (Groningen), S. Voicu (Rome).


Proposals are invited for lectures of 30 minutes.

The good proposals exhibiting a comparative perspective will be given preference when there are too many very good paper proposals offered.

Paper proposals contextualising sermons by making links with other writings of Chrysostom or Severian or those of other writers are also particularly welcome.


Proposals (between 250 and 500 words) may be sent to the organisers, no later than April, 30, 2016.

Johan Leemans (

Geert Roskam (

Peter Van Deun (


January 27th, 2016 1:44 pm