Saints of the Canon – Saint Cornelius

detail of a stained glass window of Pope Saint Cornelius, by Clemens Winkhold, 1889; church of Saint Barbara, Breunig, Germany; photographed on 6 November 2010 by Reinhardhauke; swiped off Wikimedi CommonsSaint Cornelius was a Roman, who became Pope for one year. He was banished from Rome by the Emperor Gallus, and suffered martyrdom under the Emperor Volusian.

His pontificate was remarkable for the Roman Council of sixty bishops, which he assembled to examine and condemn the notorious rigorous anti-pope, Novatian. According to Novatian, those who were weak enough to sacrifice to idols, or to purchase certificates which stated they had done so, during the terror of the persecution, could never be absolved by the Church.

Pope Saint Cornelius condemned this harsh doctrine. He was martyred in 252.

– from The Saints of the Canon, by Monsignor John T. McMahon, M.A., Ph.D; Australian Catholic Truth Society, 1958