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Saint Soter
Soter.jpg
Papacy began 166
Papacy ended 174
Predecessor Anicetus
Successor Eleuterus
Personal details
Birth name ???
Born ???
Fondi, Campania, Roman Empire
Died 174 (?)
Rome, Roman Empire
Papal styles of
Pope Soter

Emblem of the Papacy SE.svg

Reference style His Holiness
Spoken style Your Holiness
Religious style Holy Father
Posthumous style Saint

Pope Saint Soter was Bishop of Rome in the latter half of the 2nd Century, born in Fondi, Campania, Italy, whose pontificate began, according to the Annuario Pontificio, in 162 or 168 and ending in 170 or 177, respectively.[1]

It was stated that he declared that marriage was valid only as a sacrament blessed by a priest, and that formally inaugurated Easter as an annual festival in Rome.

The Catholic Encyclopedia says that nothing more is known of Pope Soter other than that Dionysius, Bishop of Corinth wrote him a letter, of which an extract is preserved, praising his charity and referring to a letter from him.[2]

Saint Soter's feast day is on April 22, as is that of Saint Caius. They are celebrated jointly in the Tridentine Calendar and in the successive versions of the General Roman Calendar until that of 1969, since when they are omitted. Both are mentioned under 22 April in the Roman Martyrology, the official list of recognized saints. The entry about Saint Soter is as follows: "At Rome, Saint Soter, Pope, whom Dionysius of Corinth praises for his outstanding charity towards needy exiled Christians who came to him, and towards those who had been condemned to the mines."[3]

It has often been supposed that all the earliest Popes suffered martyrdom; but the Roman Martyrology does not give Pope Soter the title of Martyr.

The name Soter derives from the Greek word "σωτήρ" (sōtēr), meaning a saviour, a deliverer.

References

  1. ^ Annuario Pontificio 2008 (Libreria Editrice Vaticana, ISBN 978-88-209-8021-4), p. 8*
  2. ^ "Caius and Soter, Saints and Popes". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03144c.htm.  
  3. ^ Martyrologium Romanum (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2001 ISBN 88-209-7210-7)
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Anicetus
Bishop of Rome
Pope

167–175
Succeeded by
Eleuterus
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