ST DAMASUS 11 December 2016

Feast: December 11

Lithography of Pope Saint Damasus I (Lisboa, 1840).

Lithography of Pope Saint Damasus I (Lisboa, 1840).

[From his works, St. Jerome, Rufin, and Anastasius in the Pontifical. See Tillemont, t. viii. p. 386 Ceillier, t. vi. p. 455. Abbate Anton. Merenda, in the new edition of this pope’s works, which he published at Rome, in folio, anno. 1754, in which he gives the life of this pope in annals.]

Pope Damasus is said in the Pontifical to have been a Spaniard; which may be true of his extraction, but Tillemont and Merenda show that he seems to have been born at Rome. His father, whose name was Antony, either after the death of his wife or by her free consent, engaged himself in an ecclesiastical state, and was successively reader, deacon, and priest, of the title or parish Church of St. Laurence in Rome. Damasus served in the sacred ministry in the same church and always lived in a perfect state of continence, as St. Jerome assures us. When Liberius was banished by Constantius to Beraea, in 354, he was archdeacon of the Roman church, and attended him into exile, but immediately returned to Rome. Liberius at length was prevailed upon to sign a confession of faith in which the word consubstantial was omitted. After his return from banishment he constantly held communion with St. Athanasius, as is clear from that holy man’s letter to the bishops of Egypt in 360. He condemned and annulled the decrees of the council of Rimini, by a letter which he wrote to those bishops, mentioned by Siricius.[1] Liberius, after this, lay hid some time in the vaults of the cemeteries for fear of the persecutors, as we learn from Sozomen,[2] Prosper, in his chronicle,[3] Lucifer of Cagliari,[4] and Anastasius, in the life of Pope Julius. Thus he repaired the fault which he had committed by his subscription. All this time Damasus had a great share in the government of the church, and doubtless animated the zeal of the pope.



Papacy began 1 October 366
Papacy ended 11 December 384
Predecessor Liberius
Successor Siricius
Personal details
Birth name Damasus
Born c. 305
Rome, Western Roman Empire
Died 11 December 384
Rome, Western Roman Empire
Feast day 11 December
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Patronage Archaeologists
Other popes named Damasus