Saint for the Day - June 20 - St. Silverius
Silverius was son of
Pope Hermisdas, who had been married before he
entered the ministry. Upon the death of St. Agapetas,
after a vacancy of forty-seven days, Silverius, then
subdeacon, was chosen Pope, and ordained on the 8th
of June, 536.
Theodora, the empress of Justinian, resolved to
promote the sect of the Acephali. She endeavored to
win Silverius over to her interest, and wrote to
him, ordering that he should acknowledge Anthimus
lawful bishop, or repair in person to Constantinople
and reŽxamine his cause on the spot. Without the
least hesitation or delay, Silverius returned her a
short answer, by which he peremptorily gave her to
understand that he neither could nor would obey her
unjust demands and betray the cause of the Catholic
faith. The empress, finding that she could expect
nothing from him, resolved to have him deposed.
Vigilius, archdeacon of the Roman Church, a man of
address, was then at Constantinople. To him the
empress made her application, and finding him taken
by the bait of ambition, promised to make him Pope,
and to bestow on him seven hundred pieces of gold,
provided he would engage himself to condemn the
Council of Chalcedon and receive to Communion the
three deposed Eutychian patriarchs, Anthimus of
Constantinople, Severus of Antioch, and Theodosius
The unhappy Vigilius having assented to these
conditions, the empress sent him to Rome, charged
with a letter to the general Belisarius, commanding
him to drive out Silverius and to contrive the
election of Vigilius to the pontificate. Vigilius
urged the general to execute the project. The more
easily to carry out this project the Pope was
accused of corresponding with the enemy and a letter
was produced which was pretended to have been
written by him to the king of the Goths, inviting
him into the city, and promising to open the gates
to him. Silverius was banished to Patara in Lycia.
The bishop of that city received the illustrious
exile with all possible marks of honor and respect;
and thinking himself bound to undertake his defence,
repaired to Constantinople, and spoke boldly to the
emperor, terrifying him with the threats of the
divine judgments for the expulsion of a bishop of so
great a see, telling him, "There are many kings in
the world, but there is only one Pope over the
Church of the whole world." It must be observed that
these were the words of an Oriental bishop, and a
clear confession of the supremacy of the Roman See.
Justinian appeared startled at the atrocity of the
proceedings, and gave orders that Silverius should
be sent back to Rome, but the enemies of the Pope
contrived to prevent it, and he was intercepted on
his road toward Rome and carried to a desert island,
where he died on the 20th of June, 538.'
Saint for the Day - St. Silverius
Read about the Saint for today - June 20 and spare a thought for family or friends who might suffering from ill health or are experiencing times of trouble.
All perfection consists in
keeping a guard upon the heart.
Wherever we are, we can make a
solitude in our hearts, detach
ourselves from the world, and
converse familiarly with God.
Let us take St. Silverius for our
example and encouragement.
Saint for the Day Website
We hope that you gain spiritual knowledge and inspiration reading about the saint for today - June 20. An online Catholic resource providing a short Reflection for the year ahead. Use these short, inspiring words to request guidance or assistance for yourself and for the sake of others.