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Pope Soter

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Saint Soter
Papacy began 166
Papacy ended 174
Predecessor Anicetus
Successor Eleuterus
Personal details
Birth name ???
Born ???
Fondi, Campania, Roman Empire
Died 174 (?)
Rome, Roman Empire
Papal styles of
Pope Soter
Emblem of the Papacy SE.svg
Reference style His Holiness
Spoken style Your Holiness
Religious style Holy Father
Posthumous style Saint

Pope Saint Soter (died 174) was the Bishop of Rome during the latter half of the 2nd Century with his pontificate, according to the Annuario Pontificio, beginning between 162 and 168 then ending between 170 and 177.[1] Although his name is derived from the Greek word "σωτήρ" (sōtēr), meaning a "saviour" or "deliverer", he was born in Fondi, Campania, Italy.[2] Soter is known for declaring that marriage was valid only as a sacrament blessed by a priest and he also formally inaugurated Easter as an annual festival in Rome.[3]

Saint Soter's feast day is celebrated on 22 April, as is that of Saint Caius.[4] The Roman Martyrology, the official list of recognized saints, references Soter: "At Rome, Saint Soter, Pope, whom Dionysius of Corinth praises for his outstanding charity towards needy exiled Christians who came to him, and towards those who had been condemned to the mines."[4]

It has often been supposed that all the earliest Popes suffered martyrdom; but the Roman Martyrology does not give Pope Soter the title of Martyr.[4] The book detailing the 1969 revision of the General Roman Calendar states: "There are no grounds for including Saint Soter and Saint Caius among the martyrs."[5]

External links


  1. Annuario Pontificio 2012 (Libreria Editrice Vaticana, ISBN 978-88-209-8722-0), p. 8*
  2. http://atheism.about.com/library/glossary/western/bldef_soter.htm
  3. http://saints.sqpn.com/pope-saint-soter/
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Martyrologium Romanum (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2001 ISBN 88-209-7210-7)
  5. Calendarium Romanum (Editrice Vaticana 1969), p. 120
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Bishop of Rome

Succeeded by