[St. Pachomius Library]

Agapetus I, Pope of Rome

VI Century
The son of a priest who was killed by supporters of antipope Lawrence in 502, Agapetus I was an archdeacon at the time of his election to the papacy in 535. He decreed that Arians who had converted to Christianity could not hold church offices. Shortly after his election, he traveled to Constantinople at the request of Theodahad of the Ostrogoths to ask Emperor Justinian not to invade Italy. This mission was not successful. While in the eastern capital, Agapetus removed the monothelite patriarch, Anthimus, who had previously been bishop of Trebizond, by citing a canon that forbade the transfer of bishops. Agapetus died in 536, and his body was brought from Constantinople to Rome for burial at St. Peter's.

Karen Rae Keck


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