Spirituality for Today – September 2015 – Volume 20, Issue 2

The 109th Pope
Saint Hadrian III

An image of Pope Saint Hadrian III, the 109th PopePope Saint Hadrian III, the 109th Pope

Pope St. Hadrian III (884-885) – Much of this popes brief reign is not documented. He may have been assassinated. He wanted to pattern his papacy after Pope John VIII – the first pope to be assassinated. The atmosphere of the vendetta was present still. There are reports that the pope had brought to harm and humiliation two persons who were enemies of Pope John VIII.

Regarding relations with the East, Pope Hadrian's mood was much more amiable. Thus, he continued the good will created by his predecessor. In other areas of royal politics, Pope Hadrian accepted an request of the emperor, Charles III to travel to Germany to attend the royal meeting known as the Diet of Worms (I know, sounds disgusting). Charles and the pope were hoping to enter into a quid pro quo agreement respecting the illegitimate son of the emperor being recognized as the heir to the throne and imperial support for the pope against his opponents back in Rome. On his way to Germany, however, it is believe that the pope was murdered. The abbey of Nonantola was reported to be his burial place.

Habemus papam