Ordinary Time: October 26th
Friday of the Twenty-Ninth Week of Ordinary Time
Old Calendar: St. Evaristus, pope and martyr
"This is a Saint who strove for the truth, even unto death, and feared not the words of sinful men, forasmuch as he was founded upon a sure foundation." — Antiphon for VespersBefore the reform of the General Roman Calendar today was the feast of St. Evaristus, one of the first popes and the successor of St. Clement. Pope Evaristus governed the Church from 97 to about 107. He was buried at the Vatican.
The episcopate of Evaristus began in the third year of Emperor Trajan's reign. Sources refer to him as a Greek from Antioch, the son of a Jew named Juda from Bethlehem. The exact length of his reign has been disputed by historians, as have been the authenticity of his letters and decretals; however, early scholars credit Evaristus with dividing Rome into specific parishes and with ordaining fifteen bishops, seven priests, and two deacons. Lack of historical evidence for these acts, though, would make them questionable.