11. St. Anicetus 155-166

Anicetus

A dreaded pirate from modern day Georgia,Anicetus led an anti-Roman revolt against Emperor Nero……wait,that’s the wrong Anicetus. THIS Anicetus was a scholar from Syria,and his tenure as Pope continued the fight against various heresies that plagued his predecessors. The most important event of Anicetus’ time in office was a visit from the elderly St. Polycarp. Polycarp was the Bishop of Smyrna from the East,(and when he was very young a disciple of John the Apostle;one degree of Jesus!), and he had arrived to debate and discuss differences between the Western and Eastern Churches. Chief among these differences was when to celebrate Easter. To simplify things,the Western Church had decided to celebrate on the nearest Sunday following the Paschal full moon date of the year. The Eastern Church celebrated Easter on the traditional Jewish day of Passover,no matter which day it fell on. The two men discussed this at length,but eventually agreed to disagree,each keeping to the customs of their regions,and with that,they parted on friendly terms. This was the start of a Easter debate that would last for the next two hundred years and would help to escalate a schism between the two Churches that lasts to this day. Anicetus’ feast day is April 20th and his name is Greek for “unconquered”.

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