Book of Saints – John Climacus

detail of a painting of monks of the Ladder of Divine Ascent as described in the vision of Saint John Climacus, the 30 rungs symbolizing Saint John's 30 virtues; latter 12th century, artist unknown; Saint Catherine's Monastery, Sinai, Egypt; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsArticle

(Saint) Abbot (March 30) (7th century) Born in Palestine about A.D. 525, while still a youth, he made such progress in learning that he acquired the surname of the “Scholastic.” When sixteen years old, he turned from the brilliant future which lay before him in the world; and retiring to Mount Sinai, put himself under the direction of a holy monk who foretold that this John would be one of the brightest lights of the Eastern Churches. Nineteen years later he withdrew to yet deeper solitude and, by studying the lives of the Saints and modelling his own on their examples, raised himself to a high degree of contemplative prayer. His fame for sanctity drew to him crowds of disciples, and at the age of seventy-five he was chosen Abbot of Mount Sinai, where he wrote his famous book: “The Climax or Ladder of Perfection,” which has been praised in all ages for its wisdom, its clearness and its unction. After four years of Superiorship, he again returned to his solitude and died A.D. 605.

MLA Citation

  • Monks of Ramsgate. “John Climacus”. Book of Saints, 1921. CatholicSaints.Info. 12 August 2018. Web. 26 January 2022. <>