Pope Saint Celestine V

Also known as

  • Peter Celestine
  • Peter Morrone
  • Peter of Moroni
  • Pietro del Morrone
  • Pietro di Murrone

Memorial

Profile

Eleventh of twelve children. His father died when Peter was quite young. When his mother would ask, “Which one of you is going to become a saint?” Peter would answer “Me, Mama! I’ll become a saint!”.

At 20 Peter became a hermit, praying, working, and reading the Bible. He followed the Benedictine Rule, and so many other hermits came to him for guidance, that he founded the Holy Spirit Community of Maiella (Celestines).

Following a two year conclave during which the cardinals could not decide on a pope, Peter came to them with the message that God was not pleased with the long delay; the cardinals chose Peter as the 192nd Pope.

The primary objective of Celestine’s pontificate was to reform clergy, many of whom were using spiritual power to obtain wordly power. Celestine sought a way to bring the faithful to the original Gospel spirit, and he settled on “Pardon” – he called for a year of forgiveness of sins, and return to evangelical austerity and fidelity.

He reigned a mere five months, and the members of the Vatican Curia took advantage of him. This led to much mismanagement, and great uproar in the Vatican. Knowing he was responsible, Celestine asked forgiveness for his mistakes, and abdicated on 13 December 1294, the only pope to do so. His successor, Boniface VIII, kept Celestine hidden for the last ten months of his life in a small room in a Roman palace. Celestine may have appreciated it – he never lost his love of the hermit‘s life, and spent his last days in prayer.

Born

Papal Ascension

Papal Abdication

Died

Canonized

Patronage

MLA Citation

  • “Pope Saint Celestine V“. Saints.SQPN.com. 27 August 2014. Web. 28 August 2014. <>