അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) August 13th – St. John Berchmans, St. Pope Pontian & St. Hippolytus

അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) August 13th – St. John Berchmans, St. Pope Pontian & St. Hippolytus


അനുദിന വിശുദ്ധർ (Saint of the Day) August 13th – St. John Berchmans, St. Pope Pontian & St. Hippolytus

Saint John Berchmans, SJ (Dutch: Jan Berchmans) (13 March 1599 – 13 August 1621) was a Jesuit scholastic and is a saint in the Roman Catholic Church. He is the patron saint of altar servers.ohn Berchmans was born 13 March 1599, in the city of Diest situated in what is now the Belgian province of Flemish Brabant, the son of a shoemaker. His parents were John Charles and Elizabeth Berchmans. He was the oldest of five children and at baptism was named John in honor of St. John the Baptist. He grew up in an atmosphere of political turmoil caused by a religious war between the Catholic and Protestant parts of the Low Countries.[1] When he was age nine, his mother was stricken with a very long and a very serious illness. John would pass several hours each day by her bedside.[2] He studied at the Gymnasium (grammar school) at Diest and worked as a servant in the household of Canon John Froymont at Malines in order to continue his studies.[1] John also made pilgrimages to the Marian shrine of Scherpenheuvel, some 30 miles east of Brussels, but only a few miles from Diest.
St. Pope Pontian
Pope Pontian (Latin: Pontianus; died October 235) was the Bishop of Rome from 21 July 230 to 28 September 235.[1] In 235, during the persecution of Christians in the reign of the Emperor Maximinus the Thracian, Pontian was arrested and sent to the island of Sardinia. He resigned to make the election of a new pope possible.[1]A little more is known of Pontian than his predecessors, apparently from a lost papal chronicle that was available to the compiler of the Liberian Catalogue of Bishops of Rome, written in the 4th century.

Pontian’s pontificate was relatively peaceful under the reign of the Emperor Severus Alexander, and noted for the condemnation of Origen by a Roman synod, over which Pontian likely presided.[1] According to early church historian Eusebius of Caesarea, the next emperor, Maximinus, overturned his predecessor’s policy of tolerance towards Christianity.[2] Both Pope Pontian and the Antipope Hippolytus of Rome were arrested and exiled to labor in the mines of Sardinia,[3] generally regarded as a death sentence.[4]

In light of his sentence, Pontian resigned as bishop on 28 September 235, so as to allow an orderly transition in the Church of Rome. This action ended a schism that had existed in the Roman Church for eighteen years. He was beaten to death with sticks.[3] Neither Hippolytus nor Pontian survived, reconciling with one another there before their deaths. Pontian died in October 235.[5]

St. Hippolytus
Hippolytus of Rome (170 – 235 AD) was one of the most important 3rd-century theologians in the Christian Church in Rome,[1] where he was probably born.[2] Photios I of Constantinople describes him in his Bibliotheca (cod. 121) as a disciple of Irenaeus, who was said to be a disciple of Polycarp, and from the context of this passage it is supposed that he suggested that Hippolytus so styled himself. However, this assertion is doubtful.[1] He came into conflict with the popes of his time and seems to have headed a schismatic group as a rival to the Bishop of Rome. He opposed the Roman bishops who softened the penitential system to accommodate the large number of new pagan converts. However, he was very probably reconciled to the Church when he died as a martyr.[1]

Starting in the 4th century AD, various legends arose about him, identifying him as a priest of the Novatianist schism or as a soldier converted by Saint Lawrence. He has also been confused with another martyr of the same name.[1] Pius IV identifies him as “Saint Hippolytus, Bishop of Pontus”, who was martyred in the reign of Alexander Severus and whose name was inscribed on a statue found at the Church of St. Lawrence in Rome and kept at the Vatican.


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