The pope is the Bishop of Rome and, the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church. The current pope is Francis, who was elected on 13 March 2013, the office of the pope is the papacy. The pope is considered one of the worlds most powerful people because of his diplomatic and he is head of state of Vatican City, a sovereign city-state entirely enclaved within the Italian capital city of Rome. The papacy is one of the most enduring institutions in the world and has had a prominent part in world history, the popes in ancient times helped in the spread of Christianity and the resolution of various doctrinal disputes. In the Middle Ages, they played a role of importance in Western Europe. Currently, in addition to the expansion of the Christian faith and doctrine, the popes are involved in ecumenism and interfaith dialogue, charitable work, who originally had no temporal powers, in some periods of history accrued wide powers similar to those of temporal rulers. In recent centuries, popes were gradually forced to give up temporal power, the word pope derives from Greek πάππας meaning father.
The earliest record of the use of title was in regard to the by deceased Patriarch of Alexandria. Some historians have argued that the notion that Peter was the first bishop of Rome, the writings of the Church Father Irenaeus who wrote around AD180 reflect a belief that Peter founded and organised the Church at Rome. Moreover, Irenaeus was not the first to write of Peters presence in the early Roman Church, Clement of Rome wrote in a letter to the Corinthians, c. 96, about the persecution of Christians in Rome as the struggles in our time and presented to the Corinthians its heroes, the greatest and most just columns, the good apostles Peter and Paul. St. Ignatius of Antioch wrote shortly after Clement and in his letter from the city of Smyrna to the Romans he said he would not command them as Peter and Paul did. Given this and other evidence, many agree that Peter was martyred in Rome under Nero. Protestants contend that the New Testament offers no proof that Jesus established the papacy nor even that he established Peter as the first bishop of Rome, using Peters own words, argue that Christ intended himself as the foundation of the church and not Peter.
First-century Christian communities would have had a group of presbyter-bishops functioning as leaders of their local churches, episcopacies were established in metropolitan areas. Antioch may have developed such a structure before Rome, some writers claim that the emergence of a single bishop in Rome probably did not occur until the middle of the 2nd century. In their view, Linus and Clement were possibly prominent presbyter-bishops, documents of the 1st century and early 2nd century indicate that the Holy See had some kind of pre-eminence and prominence in the Church as a whole, though the detail of what this meant is unclear. It seems that at first the terms episcopos and presbyter were used interchangeably, the consensus among scholars has been that, at the turn of the 1st and 2nd centuries, local congregations were led by bishops and presbyters whose offices were overlapping or indistinguishable
Pope Lucius I
Pope Lucius I was the Bishop of Rome from 25 June 253 to his death in 254. He was banished soon after his consecration, but gained permission to return and he was mistakenly classified as a martyr in the persecution of Valerian, which did not begin until after Lucius death. A Danish legend held that the demons of Isefjord feared nothing but the skull of Lucius I, and when this skull was taken to Denmark, it brought peace, and Lucius was declared patron of Zealand. The skull was preserved as a national relic until carbon dating proved that it did not date back as far as his time. St. Lucius was born in Rome at a date, nothing is known about his family except his fathers name. He was elected probably on 25 June 253 and died on 5 March 254 and he is praised in several letters of St. Cyprian for condemning the Novationists for their refusal to readmit to communion Christians who repented for having lapsed under persecution. For his faith in Christ he suffered exile and acted as a confessor of the faith, with moderation and prudence.
His feast did not appear in the Tridentine Calendar of Pope Saint Pius V, in 1602, it was inserted under the date of 4 March, into the General Roman Calendar. With the insertion in 1621 on the date of the feast of Saint Casimir. In spite of what is stated in the Liber Pontificalis. The persecution of Valerian in which he was said to have been martyred is known to have started than March 254 and his tombstone is still extant in the catacomb of Callixtus. His relics were brought to the church of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, along with the relics of St. Cecilia. His head is preserved in a reliquary in St. Ansgars Cathedral in Copenhagen and this relic was brought to Roskilde around the year 1100, after St. Lucius had been declared patron of the Danish region Zealand. The skull remained in Roskilde Cathedral until 1908, when it was moved to Saint Ansgars Cathedral while the property of Copenhagens National museum, Pope St. Lucius head is among the few relics to have survived the Reformation in Denmark.
However the Norwegian researcher Øystein Morten started wondering if St. Lucius skull might have mixed up with the skull of the Norwegian king Sigurd Jorsalfar. This skull had kept in the Danish National Museum collection in the 1800s until it was donated to Oslo University in 1867. So the skull in question never belonged to St. Lucius, the results rule out that it may have belonged to the crusader king Sigurd. List of Catholic saints List of popes This article incorporates text from a now in the public domain, Hugh
Pope Sixtus I
Pope Sixtus I was the Bishop of Rome from c.115 to his death c. He succeeded Pope Alexander I and was in turn succeeded by Pope Telesphorus, in the oldest documents, Xystus is the spelling used for the first three popes of that name. Pope Sixtus I is the sixth Pope after Peter, leading to questions whether the name Sixtus might be fictitious, the Holy Sees Annuario Pontificio identifies him as a Roman who served from 117 or 119 to 126 or 128. According to the Liberian Catalogue of popes, he served the Church during the reign of Hadrian a consulatu Negro et Aproniani usque Vero III et Ambibulo, that is, from 117 to 126. Eusebius states in his Chronicon that Sixtus I was pope from 114 to 124, while his Historia Ecclesiastica, using a different catalogue of popes, all authorities agree that he reigned about ten years. Sixtus I instituted several Roman Catholic liturgical and administrative traditions, like most of his predecessors, Sixtus I was believed to have been buried near Saint Peters grave on Vatican Hill, although there are differing traditions concerning where his body lies today.
He was a Roman by birth, and his fathers name was Pastor, alban Butler states that Clement X gave some of his relics to Cardinal de Retz, who placed them in the Abbey of St. Michael in Lorraine. The Xystus who is commemorated in the Catholic Canon of the Mass is Xystus II and his feast is celebrated on 6 April. List of Catholic saints List of popes Image of Pope Saint Sixtus as seen on a fresco at Chalivoy-Milon in the Berry, Pope St. Sixtus I CE Sixtus I. in the Ecumenical Lexicon of Saints Collected works in Migne Patrologia Latina
Pope Hyginus was the Bishop of Rome from c.138 to c. Tradition holds that during his papacy he determined the various prerogatives of the clergy and he decreed that all churches be consecrated. He is said to have died a martyr under the persecution of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, the chronology of the early bishops of Rome cannot be determined with any degree of exactitude today. According to the Liber Pontificalis, Hyginus was a Greek by birth, irenaeus says that the Gnostic Valentinus came to Rome in Hyginuss time, remaining there until Anicetus became pontiff. How many of these took place during the time of Hyginus is not known. The Liber Pontificalis relates that this pope organized the hierarchy and this general observation recurs in the biography of Pope Hormisdas, but has no historical value. According to Louis Duchesne, the writer referred to the lower orders of the clergy. The ancient sources contain no information as to his having died a martyr, at his death he was buried on the Vatican Hill, near the tomb of St.
Peter. His feast is celebrated on 11 January, three letters attributed to him have survived. List of Catholic saints List of popes Opera Omnia Chisholm, fontes Latinae de papis usque ad annum 530 Liber pontificalis
Pope Eleuterus, known as Eleutherius, was the Bishop of Rome from c.174 to his death. According to the Liber Pontificalis, he was a Greek born in Nicopolis in Epirus and his contemporary Hegesippus wrote that he was a deacon of the Roman Church under Pope Anicetus, and remained so under Pope Soter, whom he succeeded around 174. The 6th-century recension of Liber Pontificalis known as the Felician Catalog includes additional commentary to the earlier entry on Eleuterus. Such a decree might have been issued against early continuations of Jewish dietary law and against similar laws practiced by the Gnostics and Montanists. It is possible, that the editor of the attributed to Eleuterus a decree similar to another issued around the year 500 in order to give it greater authority. Another addition credited Eleuterus with receiving a letter from Lucius, King of Britain or King of the Britons, no earlier accounts of this mission have been found. It is now considered to be a pious forgery, although there remains disagreement over its original purpose.
Duchesne dated the entry a little to the pontificate of Boniface II around 530, the first Englishman to mention the story was Bede and he seems to have taken it, not from native texts or traditions, but from The Book of the Popes. The account, dates this baptism to AD167, in the 12th century, more details began to be added to the story. Geoffrey of Monmouths pseudohistorical History of the Kings of Britain goes into detail concerning Lucius. The 12th-century Book of Llandaf placed the court of Lucius in southern Wales and names his emissaries to the pope as Elfan, an echo of this legend penetrated even to Switzerland. In this way Lucius, the missionary of the Swiss district of Chur. Harnack suggests that in the document which the compiler of the Liber Pontificalis drew his information, the name found was not Britanio, now this is the name of the fortress of Edessa. The king in question is, Lucius Ælius Septimus Megas Abgar IX, of Edessa, according to the Liber Pontificalis, Pope Eleutherius died on 24 May and was buried on the Vatican Hill near the body of St.
Peter. Later tradition has his body moved to the church of San Giovanni della Pigna, in 1591, his remains were again moved to the church of Santa Susanna at the request of Camilla Peretti, the sister of Pope Sixtus V. His feast is celebrated on 26 May, List of popes List of Catholic saints
Pope Alexander I
Pope Alexander I can refer to Pope Alexander I of Alexandria. Pope Alexander I was the Bishop of Rome from c.107 to his death c, the Holy Sees Annuario Pontificio identifies him as a Roman who reigned from 108 or 109 to 116 or 119. Some believe he suffered martyrdom under the Roman Emperor Trajan or Hadrian, according to the Liber Pontificalis, it was Alexander I who inserted the narration of the Last Supper into the liturgy of the Mass. However, the article on Saint Alexander I in the 1907 Catholic Encyclopedia, written by Thomas Shahan, judges this tradition to be inaccurate, some sources consider these attributions unlikely. It is certainly possible, that Alexander played an important part in the development of the Church of Romes emerging liturgical. A tradition holds that in the reign of Emperor Hadrian, Alexander I converted the Roman governor Hermes by miraculous means, Saint Quirinus of Neuss, who was Alexanders supposed jailer, and Quirinus daughter Saint Balbina were among his converts.
Alexander is said to have seen a vision of the infant Jesus and his remains are said to have been transferred to Freising in Bavaria, Germany in AD834. Some editions of the Roman Missal identified with Pope Alexander I the Saint Alexander that they give as commemorated, together with Saints Eventius and Theodulus, for instance, the General Roman Calendar of 1954. But nothing is known of three saints other than their names, together with the fact that they were martyred and were buried at the seventh milestone of the Via Nomentana on 3 May of some year. The Roman Martyrology lists them as Eventius and Theodulus, List of Catholic saints List of popes Benedict XVI. Port Washington, NY, Kennikat Press,1971, fortescue and Scott M. P. Reid. The Early Papacy, To the Synod of Chalcedon in 451, the Drama of the Lost Disciples. ISBN 1-889758-86-8 Pope St. Alexander I] Encyclopaedia Britannica, Saint Alexander I
Pope Clement I
Pope Clement I, known as Saint Clement of Rome, is listed by Irenaeus and Tertullian as Bishop of Rome, holding office from 88 to his death in 99. He is considered to be the first Apostolic Father of the Church, few details are known about Clements life. Clement was said to have been consecrated by Saint Peter, early church lists place him as the second or third bishop of Rome after Saint Peter. Tertullian considered Clement to be the successor of Peter. In one of his works, Jerome listed Clement as the bishop of Rome after Peter. Clement is put after Linus and Cletus/Anacletus in the earliest account, that of Irenaeus, Clements only genuine extant writing is his letter to the church at Corinth in response to a dispute in which certain presbyters of the Corinthian church had been deposed. He asserted the authority of the presbyters as rulers of the church on the ground that the Apostles had appointed such. His letter, which is one of the oldest extant Christian documents outside of the New Testament, was read in church, along with other epistles and these works were the first to affirm the apostolic authority of the clergy.
A second epistle,2 Clement, was attributed to Clement, in the legendary Clementine Literature, Clement is the intermediary through whom the apostles teach the church. According to tradition, Clement was imprisoned under the Emperor Trajan, thereafter he was executed by being tied to an anchor and thrown into the sea. Clement is recognized as a saint in many Christian churches and is considered a saint of mariners. He is commemorated on 23 November in the Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, in Eastern Orthodox Christianity his feast is kept on 24 or 25 November. Starting in the 3rd and 4th century, tradition has identified him as the Clement that Paul mentioned in Philippians 4,3, a fellow laborer in Christ. The 2nd-century Shepherd of Hermas mentions a Clement whose office it was to communicate with other churches, most likely, the Liber Pontificalis, which documents the reigns of popes, states that Clement had known Saint Peter. It states that he wrote two letters and that he died in Greece in the year of Emperor Trajans reign.
A large congregation existed in Rome c,58, when Paul wrote his Epistle to the Romans. His Captivity Epistles, as well as Mark, Acts and Peter were said to have been martyred here. Nero persecuted Roman Christians after Rome burned in 64, and the congregation may have suffered persecution under Domitian
Pope Stephen I
Pope Stephen I was the bishop of Rome from 12 May 254 to his death in 257. Of Roman birth but of Greek ancestry, he became bishop after serving as archdeacon of Pope Lucius I, the controversy arose in the context of a broad pastoral problem. During the Decian persecution some Christians had purchased certificates attesting that they had made the sacrifices to the Roman gods. Others had denied they were Christians while yet others had in fact taken part in pagan sacrifices and these people were two called lapsi. The question arose that if they repented, could they be readmitted to communion with the church, stephens view eventually won broad acceptance in the Latin Church. However, in the Eastern Churches this issue is still debated and he is mentioned as having insisted on the restoration of the bishops of León and Astorga, who had been deposed for unfaithfulness during the persecution but afterwards had repented. As late as the 18th century, what was said to be the chair was preserved, St Stephen Is feast day in the Roman Catholic Church is celebrated on 2 August.
In 1839, when the new feast of St Alphonsus Mary de Liguori was assigned to 2 August, Pope Saint Stephen I is the patron of Hvar and of Modigliana Cathedral. List of Catholic saints List of popes Herbermann, Charles, ed. Pope St. Stephen I, St. Stephen and Martyr, Butlers Lives of the Saints His writings
Fabian was the Bishop of Rome from 10 January 236 to his death in 250, succeeding Anterus. He is famous for the nature of his election, in which a dove is said to have descended on his head to mark him as the Holy Spirits unexpected choice to become the next pope. It was probably during his reign that the schism between the two corresponding Roman congregations of these leaders was ended and he was highly esteemed by Cyprian, Novatian refers to his nobilissima memoriae, and he corresponded with Origen. One authority refers to him as Flavian, the Liber Pontificalis, a fourth-century document that survives in copies, says that he divided Rome into diaconates and appointed secretaries to collect the records of the martyrs. He is said, probably without basis, to have baptized the emperor Philip the Arab, more plausible is the report in the Liberian Catalogue that he sent out seven apostles to the Gauls as missionaries. He died a martyr at the beginning of the Decian persecution and is venerated as a saint by the Catholic Church, Fabians feast day is commemorated on January 20, the same as Saint Sebastian, in whose church his sepulcher lies in Rome.
According to the Liber Pontificalis, Fabian was a noble Roman by birth, nothing more is known about his background. The legend concerning the circumstances of his election is preserved by the fourth-century writer Eusebius of Caesarea, after the short reign of Pope Anterus, Fabian had come to Rome from the countryside when the new papal election began. Although present, says Eusebius, Fabian was in the mind of none, while the names of several illustrious and noble churchmen were being considered over the course of thirteen days, a dove suddenly descended upon the head of Fabian. To the assembled electors, this strange sight recalled the scene of the descent of the Holy Spirit on Jesus at the time of his baptism by John the Baptist. The congregation took this as a sign that he was marked out for this dignity, during Fabians reign of 14 years, there was a lull in the storm of persecution which had resulted in the exile of both Anterus predecessor Pontian and the antipope Hippolytus. Fabian had enough influence at court to effect the return of the bodies of both of these martyrs from Sardinia, where they had died at hard labor in the mines.
According to the sixth-century historian Gregory of Tours Fabian sent out the apostles to the Gauls to Christianise Gaul in A. D.245 and he condemned Privatus, the originator of a new heresy in Africa. The Liber Pontificalis says that Fabian divided the Christian communities of Rome into seven districts, Eusebius adds that he appointed seven subdeacons to help collect the acta of the martyrs—the reports of the court proceedings on the occasion of their trials. There is a tradition that he instituted the four minor orders, lector, exorcist. However most scholars believe these offices evolved gradually and were instituted at a date. With the advent of Emperor Decius, the Roman governments tolerant policy toward Christianity temporarily ended, Decius ordered leading Christians to demonstrate their loyalty to Rome by offering incense to the cult images of deities which represented the Roman state. This was unacceptable to many Christians, while no longer holding most of the laws of the Old Testament to apply to them, took the commandment against idolatry with deadly seriousness
Pope Cornelius was the Bishop of Rome from 6 or 13 March 251 to his martyrdom in 253. Many Christians refused and were martyred, while others partook in the sacrifices in order to save their own lives, two schools of thought arose after the persecution. Under this philosophy, the way to re-enter the church would be re-baptism. The opposing side, including Cornelius and Cyprian the Bishop of Carthage, instead they thought that the sinners should only need to show contrition and true repentance to be welcomed back into the church. In hopes that Christianity would fade away, Decius prevented the election of a new pope, soon afterwards Decius was forced to leave the area to fight the invading Goths and while he was away the elections for pope were held. In the 14 months without a pope, the leading candidate, Novatian believed that he would be elected, however Cornelius was unwillingly elected the twenty-first pope in March 251. Novatian was very angry not only that he was not elected pope and he thus proclaimed himself the antipope to Cornelius, driving a schism through the church.
Corneliuss next action was to convene a synod of 60 bishops to restate himself as the rightful pope, addressed in the synod was that Christians who stopped practising during Emperor Deciuss persecution could receive communion only after doing penance. The verdict of the synod was sent to the Christian bishops, most notably the bishop of Antioch, the letters that Cornelius sent to surrounding bishops provide knowledge of the size of the church during the period. His letters inform that Cornelius had a staff of over 150 clergy members, from these numbers, it has been estimated that there were at least 50,000 Christians in Rome during the papacy of Pope Cornelius. In June 251, Decius was killed in battle with the Goths, persecution began again in June 252, and Pope Cornelius was exiled to Centumcellae, where he died in June 253. The Liberian catalogue lists his death as being from the hardships of banishment, sources claim he was beheaded. Cornelius is not buried in the chapel of the popes, but in a catacomb.
This suggests that Cornelius did not come from a wealthy family. A letter from Cornelius while in exile mentions an office of exorcist in the church for the first time, canon law has since required each diocese to have an exorcist. St. Cornelius is not mentioned much in most texts, when he is referenced, it seems to be in conjunction with his anti-pope Novatian, who eventually founded his own church with his own bishops, his predecessor St Fabian, or his successor St. Lucius. His papacy was short, reigning two years, three months, and ten days, and little was probably circulated at the due to the persecution in Christian centers. Over time, St. Cornelius seems to have been overlooked and passed over for other great Catholic popes whose papacies lasted longer, had political power
Pope Sixtus II
Pope Sixtus II was the Pope or Bishop of Rome from 31 August 257 until his death on 6 August 258. He was martyred along with seven deacons, Including Lawrence of Rome during the persecution of the Catholic Church by Emperor Valerian. He restored the relations with the African and Eastern churches which had broken off by his predecessor on the question of heretical baptism raised by the heresy Novatianism. In the persecutions under Valerian in 258, numerous bishops, Pope Sixtus II was one of the first victims of this persecution, being beheaded on 6 August. He was martyred along with six deacons— Januarius, Magnus, Stephanus and Agapitus, Lawrence of Rome, his best-known deacon, suffered martyrdom on 10 August,3 days after his bishop, as Sixtus had prophesied. He is thought by some to be the author of the pseudo-Cyprianic writing Ad Novatianum, another composition written at Rome, between 253 and 258, is generally agreed to be his. It is this Sixtus who is referred to by name in the Roman Canon of the Mass, the Tridentine Calendar commemorated Sixtus and Agapitus on the feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord,6 August.
Christ, who gives recompense, made manifest the Pastors merit, List of Catholic saints List of popes Erich Kettenhofen. Pope St. Sixtus II CE St. Xystus, or Sixtus II, Pope and Martyr, Butlers Lives of the Saints Pope Sixtus II in the Ecumenical Lexicon of Saints Collected works by Migne Patrologia Latina