Faithful Friday: Pope Fabian

By Sarah Levesque

Little is known about Pope Fabian, including when he was born. He became Pope in 236AD, following the death of Pope Anterus. The early Church historian Eusebius relates that Fabian was not one of the original candidates for the office, but a dove descended upon him during the election process and those present decided this was a sign from the Holy Spirit and thus duly elected him. Fabian proved to be a strong administrator. Like most popes, he appointed bishops, including missionaries to Gaul. During his pontificate, he also had the catacombs improved and organized the collecting of records of the trials and stories of the martyrs. From this point on, the Roman Church always sought to keep records of martyrs and saints. Though accused of heresy, Fabian was successfully defended by Origen. Fabian continued as Pope until 250, when he was martyred during the persecution of the Emperor Decius. He is considered a saint by the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church and is also honored by the Anglican Church.

May we, like Pope Fabian, do our utmost to help God’s church wherever He places us.


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