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POPE STORIES

SAINT POPE ANASTASIUS I

Pope Anastasius stands out as a little known man, with one unusual characteristic: he was succeeded by his own son, Innocent I. Anastasius was known as a pious youth and, apparently, cared nothing for material things as an adult. He was born about the year 330AD, a Roman, whose father's name was Maximus. When he was a young man, Anastasiu...

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POPE SAINT SIRICIUS

The pontificate of Siricius was in no way as violent or disturbing as that of his predecessor, Pope Damasus. A native of Rome, Siricius had been active in the Church since he was a young man. He started as a lector, was ordained a deacon during the pontificate of Liberius, and served in some capacity under Damasus. After that pope's death,...

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POPE ST. DAMASUS I, DEFENDER AGAINST SCHISMS

Today's pope was born and grew up around Rome. As a child, his parents, Antonius and Laurentia, seperated so that they could live the rest of their lives in the consecrated state. Antonius became a priest and his house became the church, San Lorenzo. Damasus served with his father in this little church. He was a child when the Edict of Mi...

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POPE LIBERIUS I

Pope Liberius is the first pope in history not to be awarded sainthood by the Church. Once you read the controversy which embroiled his papacy, you will understand why. Having had the freedom to practice the Faith for slightly more than a generation, the politics of the Church had become so entwined with that of the emperor of Rome that it ...

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POPE JULIUS I, SUPPORTER OF ORTHODOXY

Pope Marcus died on October 7, 336. No one was elected to replace him until February 6, the next year. At that time, Julius, son of Rustics, a Roman, was raised to the Chair of Peter. Almost as soon as Julius was proclaimed, the great emperor, Constantine died. He, it is recalled, tended to favor the new heresy, the Arians, who insisted tha...

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POPE SAINT MARCUS

There were 34 popes in the first 300 years of the Church's history. The 34th, discussed today, is Pope St. Marcus (or Mark). The Liber Pontificalis lists him as a Roman, the son of a man named Priscus. Marcus was apparently active in the Roman church for many years, living through one of the most trying times in Christian history. In 3...

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POPE SAINT SYLVESTER I

The thirty-third bishop of Rome, Sylvester was consecrated January 31, 314 and was buried December 31, 335, having completed nearly 22 years as head of the Church at Rome. A native Roman, Sylvester's parents were Rufinus and Justa. Legend has it that he was ordained by Pope Marcellinus before the Diocletian persecutions began. Later, he wa...

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POPE SAINT MILITIADES, DEFENDER OF THE FAITH

The second pope who was acclaimed an African, Militiades was most likely of Berber parentage. Whether he was born in Africa or in Rome is not known. It is estimated that he was born in the mid 200s. Militiades, a priest, was elected to the See of Peter after it had been empty for over a year, due to the forced emigration of Pope St. E...

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POPE SAINT EUSEBIUS, DEFENDER OF DISCIPLINE

Pope Eusebius reigned for four months during the year 309 or 310. He should not be confused with other Saints Eusebius nor with Eusebius of Caesaria who wrote the great book Ecclesiastical History, shortly after this pope died. Eusebius was Greek and either his father or he was a physician. At some point he came to Rome and became involved wi...

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POPE SAINT MARCELLUS

The Bishop of Rome was dead in 304. Diocletian's persecution was in full force. Meeting places were confiscated as well as some of the burial grounds. People were in fear of being caught at Mass or other services and the presbyters were in hiding when not needed. The Christian Church was torn apart. Daily activities could not be conducted an...

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