St, John of Damascus suffered much from the Greek Emperors of Constantinople for upholding the teachings of the Church in regard to the religious honor shown to pictures and statues of the saints. After many persecutions, he went to his reward in heaven in 754. Pope Leo XIII ordered his feast to be celebrated by the Church. His many writings, his knowledge, piety and eloquence caused him to be compared by the Second Council of Nicaea to a “river of gold.” He was the last Byzantine to contribute anything to the formation of the Catholic theological structure. While not a bishop, nor a leader of men, by loving truth and preaching it fearlessly he became a light to shine in the darkness of those separated from the apostolic communion.
(Source: Fr. Lasance, The New Roman Missal)