Spirituality for Today – March 2012 – Volume 16, Issue 8

The 67th Pope
Saint Boniface IV

An image of Boniface IV the 67th PopeSaint Boniface IV the 67th Pope

Pope Saint Boniface IV, the 67th Pope (608-615)
As a devotee of Pope Gregory the Great, Pope Boniface returned to the approval of monks as candidates for ecclesiastical office. He was dedicated to the monastic movement and, in 610, held a synod to determine aspects of monastic rule. One historical note regarding the synod was that Milletus, the first bishop of London, was in attendance.

The good relationship with emperor Phocas continued. After the death of Phocas, the new emperor Heraclius maintained the closeness with Pope Boniface. One gift from Emperor Phocas was the approbation of establishing the Pantheon as a church in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the martyrs. This marked the first instance of a pagan temple turned into a church. Many cartloads of relics gleaned from the catacombs of Rome were placed beneath the main altar of the church.

The pontificate of Pope Boniface was, shall we say, plagued by plagues as well as other natural calamities. Fortunately for the suffering people of Rome, he, like Gregory the Great, had great care for the poor.

Pope Boniface IV was buried in the Basilica of Saint Peter.

Habemus papam