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Saint Peter
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Saint Peter
Pope Peter
Apostle Peter

Born: ?
Died: c. 68
Feast Day: June 29

Saint Peter is an important figure in Christianity generally and Roman Catholicism specifically. For all Christians, he is regarded as one of Jesus' leading disciples. For Roman Catholics, tradition says that Peter was the first bishop of Rome and therefore also the first pope, thus in theory establishing an unbroken line between the current Catholic leadership and the disciples personally chosen by Jesus.

According to the synoptic gospels, Peter was originally a fisherman from the village named Capernaum named Simon and was the first chosen by Jesus to be a disciple. Jesus chosen the name Cephas (or Peter) which means "rock" as a symbolic name for this first of his followers. Capernaum would become an important center of Jesus' ministry - the gospels depict him returning here often.

Unlike other disciples in the early church, Peter doesn't appear to have stayed in Jerusalem. Despite his apparently important status there, he traveled around the empire and eventually ended upon in Rome. Unfortunately, nothing it really known about his time there. Roman leader Clement records his trials and Eusebius records that he was crucified. None of that is attested to by any outside sources and it is all that we have.

According to tradition, Peter established the line of popes in Rome. In reality, the monarchical episcopate of a single bishop ruling over a diocese doesn't seem to have developed until the second century. Before that - and therefore during the time Peter was there - the Roman church was controlled by a body of presbyter-bishops who worked together.

Also Known As: none

Alternate Spellings: none

Common Misspellings: none

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