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John Cassian

(c. 360—435)


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(c.360–after 430),

monk. As a young man he joined a monastery at Bethlehem, but he soon left to study monasticism in Egypt. About 415 he founded two monasteries near Marseilles. His Institutes sets out the ordinary rules for the monastic life and discusses the chief hindrances to a monk's perfection; it was taken as the basis of many W. Rules. The Conferences take the form of a record of conversations with the leaders of E. monasticism. He shared the unease of many of the monks of Gaul with the extremes of St Augustine's doctrine of grace and attacked this doctrine in Conference 13; his position was later called Semipelagianism. Feast day in the E., 29 Feb. (when this occurs).

Subjects: Christianity.


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