Lanternarius Press

POPE STORIES

POPE ST. GREGORY I, THE FIRST MEDIEVAL POPE

Another man born in disastrous times who went on to be a pope is our subject today. Roman senator named Gordanius and a wealthy woman named Silvia were Gregory’s parents. Silvia’s great grandfather was Pope Felix III; her three aunts entered the convent; thus, the family home was very politically and religiously involved. The family lived on Ca...

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POPE PELAGIUS II, THE SECOND OSTROGOTH POPE

Photo Credit: By Copyrighted by:Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls - Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Wall Born in Rome around 520, Pelagius was the son of Winigild, most likely an Ostrogoth. He succeeded Pope Benedict I months after the latter’s death. At that time, the Lombards from north of the Alps had gone as far as to blockade R...

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Pope Benedict I, Against The Lombards

Pope Benedict ruled just over four years during one of the most vicious, violent and disordered times in the Church’s history. A son of Rome, Benedict was called Bonosus by the Greeks. His father was named Bonifacius, but we know nothing further about him. In the seven years before Benedict came to the throne of Peter, northern Italy had bee...

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Pope John III, Saving Those He Could

John, born Catelinus, was the son of Anastasius, termed “illustris”, meaning that his father was a high ranking Roman Senator. As a young man, he was raised in Rome, seeing first hand all the difficulties of the time, the invasions and the political intrigue. John may have been the same “John” who made collections of extracts of the Greek Father...

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Pope Pelagius, Trying to Right Wrongs

The popes of the early Dark Ages had an uphill battle trying to do anything. Pelagius was no exception. Born, most likely, in the late 400s, Pelagius was the son of a noble Roman family. His father, John, was the vicar of one of two civil districts in Italy. Therefore, Pelagius would have been well versed in politics and, probably, law. As a ...

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Pope Virgilius, First Byzantinian Pope

Virgilius, born around 500 AD, was the child of an aristocratic Roman family. His father, Johannes, was an emperor-appointed consul, although only an honorific at that point. His brother, Reparatus, was a senator. And one of the senators taken hostage by King Witigis during the Gothic king’s rampages. Reparatus was able to escape before the Ostr...

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POPE AGAPETUS, WHAT TEN MONTHS CAN DO

Pope Agapetus was born in Rome, what date, we do not have. His father was Giordanus, a Roman priest who was killed during the riots that followed the consecration of Pope Symmachus (498-514). Before discussing Agapetus, however, you may like to see some interesting coincidences which possibly show that back then, the papacy was "all in t...

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Pope John II, The First Pope To Change His Name

Little is known about Mercurius, son of Projectus, other than that he was a Roman. And Mercurius is not known to Western culture under his given name. We know him as Pope John II, who took the throne, January 2, 533. Mercurius was a priest at St. Clement's Basilica on the slope of Mons Coelus. This was a rich, fashionable residential area...

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POPE BONIFACE II, THE FIRST GERMANIC POPE

Pope St. Boniface II ruled just about two years, much of it trying to prove that he was the valid pope. Boniface was born probably near Rome, but of Germanic parentage, his father being Sigisbald. This was not unusual since many Ostrogoths had moved there after taking over the throne of Italy. Boniface, himself, was probably born an Ostrogoth...

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POPE FELIX IV, DEFENDER OF GRACE (526-530)

Felix is actually only the third pope of that name, the one known as Felix II being an antipope. A native of Samnium, which is approximqately where the Province of Benevenuto is today in southern Italy, all we know of Felix's early life is that his father's name was Castorius. He may have been the Deacon Felix, whom Pope Hormisdas sent...

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