Portal:Popes

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Portal of the Popes

Pope Francis in Rome, 2014.

The pope (Latin: papa from Greek: πάππας pappas, "father"), also known as the supreme pontiff (from Latin pontifex maximus "greatest priest"), is the Bishop of Rome and ex officio leader of the worldwide Catholic Church. Since 1929, the pope has also been head of state of Vatican City, a city-state enclaved within Rome, Italy. The current pope is Francis, who was elected on 13 March 2013, succeeding Benedict XVI.

While his office is called the papacy, the episcopal see and ecclesiastical jurisdiction is called the Holy See. It is the Holy See that is the sovereign entity of international law headquartered in the distinctively independent Vatican City State, established by the Lateran Treaty in 1929 between Italy and the Holy See to ensure its temporal, diplomatic, and spiritual independence. The primacy of the Bishop of Rome is largely derived from his role as the apostolic successor to Saint Peter, to whom primacy was conferred by Jesus, giving him the Keys of Heaven and the powers of "binding and loosing", naming him as the "rock" upon which the church would be built.

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A cardinal-nephew is a cardinal elevated by a pope who is that cardinal's uncle, or more generally, his relative. The practise of creating cardinal-nephews originated in the Middle Ages, and reached its apex during the 16th and 17th centuries.The word nepotism originally referred specifically to this practice, when it appeared in the English language about 1669.From the middle of the Avignon Papacy (1309–1377) until Pope Innocent XII's anti-nepotism bull (a papal charter), Romanum decet pontificem (1692), a pope without a cardinal-nephew was the exception to the rule.Pope Boniface IX, the second pope of the Western Schism, did not appoint cardinal-nephews. Until Pope Innocent XII, the only other exceptions were: Pope Innocent XI (who attempted to abolish the practice), popes who did not appoint cardinals (Pope Pius III, Pope Marcellus II, Pope Urban VII, Pope Leo XI), and Pope Adrian VI (who appointed one cardinal). Every Renaissance pope who created cardinals appointed a relative to the College of Cardinals, and the nephew was the most common choice.
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Schedrin NewRome.jpg

Papal Rome in the time of Leo XII, by Silvestr Feodosievich Shchedrin.

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Pope Pius IX (May 13, 1792 – February 7, 1878), born Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, reigned as Pope of the Roman Catholic Church from his election on June 16, 1846, until his death more than 31 years later in 1878. Pius IX was elected as the candidate of the liberal and moderate wings on the College of Cardinals, following the pontificate of arch-conservative Pope Gregory XVI. Initially sympathetic to democratic and modernizing reforms in Italy and in the Church, Pius became increasingly conservative after he was deposed as the temporal ruler of the Papal States in the events that followed the Revolutions of 1848. He formally defined the dogma of the Immaculate Conception and organized the First Vatican Council, which defined the dogma of papal infallibility.

Quotes

  • "War should belong to the tragic past, to history: it should find no place on humanity's agenda for the future." Pope John Paul II
  • "Justice requires that to lawfully constituted Authority there be given that respect and obedience which is its due; that the laws which are made shall be in wise conformity with the common good; and that, as a matter of conscience all men shall render obedience to these laws. " Pope Pius XI

Did you know...

  • ...Pius IX has had the longest reign as Pope?
  • ...That Antipope Felix V was the last historically significant Antipope?
  • ...An apocryphal Pope Donus II used to be listed in the official lists. He was mistakenly inserted after Pope Benedict VI?
  • ...That there used to be a John in the list of popes between Pope John XIV and Pope John XV this pope never existed
  • ...That Antipope John XVII and Antipope John XXIII were thought not to be illegitimate Pope?
  • ...That after Antipope Benedict X the next Pope to take the name Benedict was Pope Benedict XI. Antipope Benedict X is considered by some to be a legitimate pope?
  • ...That Pope Lando was the last pope to use a papal name which had not been previously used until Pope John Paul I did so in 1978 and Pope Francis in 2013?
  • ...There have been 217 popes from Italy, 17 from France, 13 Greeks, 8 from Germany, 6 from Syria, 3 from Spain, 3 from Africa, and one each from Galilee (Palestine) (Saint Peter), 1 from England, 1 from Portugal, 1 from the Netherlands, 1 from Poland and 1 from Argentina?
  • ...When Simon de Brion became pope in 1281, he chose to be called Martin. At that time, Marinus I and Marinus II were mistakenly considered to be Martin II and Martin III respectively, and so, erroneously, Simon de Brion became Pope Martin IV
  • ... That there are 80 Popes who are saints, 10 Popes are blessed, 1 Venerable and 3 Servants of God

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