Adeodatus (II) - The Kindly Pontiff

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Adeodatus, a kindly monk, was elected to succeed St. Vitalian in 672. Adeodatus was a Roman, the son of Jovinian. He was a monk in the monastery of St. Erasmus on the Coelian Hill. This monastery had been established in the mansion of the Valeri, one of the great patrician families of old Rome.

Consecrated April 11, 672, Adeodatus from the first seems to have made a great impression with his kindness and liberality. He was accessible to all and did what he could to send all away satisfied. He also increased the allowance which the popes of this period granted to the clergy.

Liberal to all, Adeodatus was most generous to his own old monastery. He granted to St. Erasmus the revenues from many estates. He also restored the Church of St. Peter which is situated some miles out of the city on the Via Portuensis.

During his pontificate the Saracens made a destructive foray into Sicily.

There are extant two letters of this Pope which deal with exemptions of monasteries from the control of the local bishop. In a letter to the bishops of Gaul, Adeodatus remarks that since Crotopert, bishop of Tours, had himself exempted the monastery of St. Martin, he would confirm this exemption, but that it was not the custom of the Holy See to do so.

Adeodatus, also known as Adeodatus II, died in 676 and was buried in St. Peter's.

Excerpted from "Popes Through the Ages" by Joseph Brusher, S.J.

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