Pope Soter

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Pope Saint Soter (died 174) was the Bishop of Rome during the latter half of the 2nd Century with his pontificate, according to the Annuario Pontificio, beginning between 162 and 168 then ending between 170 and 177.[1] Although his name is derived from the Greek word "σωτήρ" (sōtēr), meaning a "saviour" or "deliverer", he was born in Fondi, Campania, Italy.[2] Soter is known for declaring that marriage was valid only as a sacrament blessed by a priest and he also formally inaugurated Easter as an annual festival in Rome.[3]

Saint Soter's feast day is celebrated on April 22, as is that of Saint Caius.[4] The Roman Martyrology, the official list of recognized saints, references Soter: "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."[4]

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.[4] The book detailing the 1969 revision of the General Roman Calendar states: "There are no grounds for including Saint Soter and Saint Caius among the martyrs."[5]

References

Peter · Linus · Anacletus · Clement I · Evaristus · Alexander I · Sixtus I · Telesphorus · Hyginus · Pius I · Anicetus · Soter · Eleuterus · Victor I · Zephyrinus · Callixtus I · Urban I · Pontian · Anterus · Fabian · Cornelius · Lucius I · Stephen I · Sixtus II · Dionysius · Felix I · Eutychian · Caius · Marcellinus · Marcellus I · Eusebius · Miltiades · Sylvester I · Mark · Julius I · Liberius · Damasus I · Siricius · Anastasius I

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