Friday, September 16, 2011

September 16: SS Cornelius, Pope and Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs, memorial

Pope St Cornelius was elected in 251, two years after the death of Pope St Fabian - in the intervening period persecution had made a fresh election impossible.  The major issue he dealt with during his reign was whether apostates could be reconciled, and his decision that they could sparked the rebellion of the anti-pope, Novation. 

St Cornelius won out though, with the support of St Cyprian, an African bishop. 

St Cornelius was exiled a year later due to a new outbreak of persecution, and died a martyr.  St Cyprian was bishop of Carthage, and a number of his important writings have survived. 

He was martyred in 258.

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