St. Peter Chrysologus

Friends in Christ, today is the feast of St. Peter Chrysologus.
In the year 433AD, the capital of the Roman Empire in the West was not Rome, it was the city of Ravenna. It was a Metropolitan see, an important city, and it was in this year that the Archbishop of that city died. A new bishop was needed. The priests and the people of the city proposed a candidate, which was the custom of that time; and so they sent Bishop Cornelius of Imola to the Pope to ask his approval for their candidate. The bishop, who went along with his deacon Peter, was surprised at the Pope’s decision. The Pope did not accept their candidate. Instead, he turned to the Deacon, Peter, and chose him.
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It seems that the night before, the Holy Father received heavenly visitors in a vision, who told him that Peter the deacon was to become the Archbishop of Ravenna. And so it was.
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Peter, who was a deacon, was first ordained a priest, and then a bishop – this was not the life he had planned, but it was God’s plan. But he put himself to the task of shepherding his people; he rooted out paganism and solidly established the Catholic Faith. He encouraged everyone to live good lives so that they could receive Holy Communion often.
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Peter became most known for his preaching, and that is why he was called ‘the golden word:’ Chrysologus Peter Chrysologus, in his sermons, normally spoke for only a short time – he was afraid of tiring the attention of his listeners. He is famous for saying: “He who wants to laugh with the devil cannot rejoice with Christ.” Sometimes Peter Chrysologus spoke with such passion, that he would become speechless from excitement!
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We still have many of his sermons. In one, he says: ‘Why man, are you so worthless in your own eyes? Was not this entire universe made for your dwelling? For you were the heavens embellished with the brilliance of the sun the moon and the stars. The earth was adorned with flowers, and the marvelous variety of lovely living things was created for you. He has made you in his image, that you might make the Creator present on earth.’
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St. Peter Chrysologus saw that each person is of value to God, and that we are created for his glory.
Although St. Peter did not plan to be a bishop, he gave all, for the glory of God.

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