St. John I

Feast Day:
Roman Rite Calendar - 05/18

    18 May
    formerly 27 May

    Priest in Rome. 53rd pope in 523. Italy's ruler, Theodoric the Goth, was an Arian. For a while he let Catholics alone, but in later life became suspicious of everyone, imagining conspiracies and attempts to seize his throne. He tried to involve Pope John in his political machinations. John led a delegation to Constantinople to negotiate with Emperor Justin I; he was the first pope to travel to Constantinople, and while there crowned Justin. The mission was successful, but Theodoric thought John and Justin I had plotted against him. While returning to Rome, John was kidnapped and imprisoned by Theodoric's soldiers; he died in custody.

    in Populonia, Tuscany, Italy

Papal Ascension
    13 August 523

    18 May 526 of thirst and starvation in prison in Ravenna, Italy of natural causes

Name Meaning
    God is gracious; gift of God


All information used with permission of the Patron Saint Index.


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