Saturday, January 16, 2010

Pope St. Gaius of Rome

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Pope St. Gaius of Rome, the 27th successor of the glorious martyr St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, ruled from December 17, 283 until his death from natural causes{1} on April 22, 296.{2} In 257 he was imprisoned with future popes Sts. Sixtus II the Martyr (257-258) and Dionysius of Rome (260-268).{3} He was laid to rest in the cemetery of St. Callistus apart from the old papal crypt,{4} and his Greek epitaph reads "Burial of Gaius, bishop … April 22."{5} Pope Urban VIII of Rome (1623-1644) transferred his holy relics to the Church of St. Gaius of 1631.{6} The feast day of St. Gaius is April 22.{7}

O faithful shepherd Pope St. Gaius of Rome, entreat the merciful God to save our souls. Amen. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
Notes & References
{1} Pope St. Gaius is listed under the fourth century "Depositio Episcoporum" rather than under the "Depositio Martyrum," and he doesn't appear in any martyrology. Weltin, E. G. "Gaius (Caius), Pope, St." New Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 6. 2nd ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. 50. 15 vols. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Gale. Fordham University Libraries. 19 Dec. 2009.
{2} "Gaius." The Oxford Dictionary of Popes. J. N. D. Kelly. with new material by Michael Walsh. Oxford University Press, 2006. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press. Fordham University. 30 December 2009 <http://www.oxfordreference.com/views/ENTRY.html?subview=Main&entry=t99.e30>.
{3} According to Anastasius the Librarian. Weltin, loc. cit.
{4} According to the Depositio Episcoporum: "X kl maii Caii in Callisti." Chapman, John. "Caius and Soter, Saints and Popes." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 3. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. 19 Dec. 2009 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03144c.htm>.
{5} According to the great archaeologist Giovanni Battista de Rossi. Weltin, loc. cit.
{6} Ibid.
{7} Ibid.

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