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The Papacy - A Historical Perspective

417-440 A.D.

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St. Zosimus : 417-418 A.D.

41. Of Greek origin ( Masuraca ). Elected March 18, 417 - died December 26, 418.

He had a strong personality, claimed the right of the church against foreign interference.

He sent vicars to the Gauls. Of very high moral standards.

He ruled that illegitimate children and slaves could not become clerics and prohibited priest to go into taverns to drink wine.

His body is conserved in the Basilica of San Lorenzo Fuorile Mura. His pontificate lasted about a year and a half.

St. Boniface I : 418-422 A.D.

42. Born in Rome. Elected December 28, 418 - died November 4, 422.

The interference of Charles of Ravenna marks the beginning of the interferences in the elections of the Pope.

Boniface I was confirmed Pope after several months of opposition by another contender: the anti-pope Eulalius.

He ruled that nobody could become a priest before the age of thirty and anyone with debts could become a cleric.

He was buried in the Vatican Grottoes. He governed the Church for almost 4 years.

St. Celestine I : 422-432 A.D.

43. Born in Rome. Elected November 10, 422 - died July 27, 432.

He called the third Ecumenical Council which condemned Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople. During this council it was proclaimed that the Bishop of Rome had supremacy over all the churches.

He sent St. Patrick on a mission to Ireland.

The use of the “pastoral staff” starts to be mentioned during his time.

His body is buried in the Church of Santa Prassede in Rome. His pontificate lasted about 10 years.

St. Sixtus III : 432-440 A.D.

44. Born in Rome. Elected July 31, 432 - died August 19, 440.

He enlarged and embellished the Basilicas of Santa Maria Maggiore and San Lorenzo.

In 440, he started the construction of another church dedicated to Lorenzo: the existing San Lorenzo in Lucina.

Sixtus III was the author of many epistles and he upheld the jurisdiction of Rome, over the Illyria, against the eastern emperor who wanted it to be dependent on Constantinople.

His body is buried in the Basilica of San Lorenzo Fuori le Mura. He was a pontiff for a little over a year.

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Index of Roman Pontiffs


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