Saturday, March 16, 2013

Papal Names

For the first five centuries, popes used their birth names.  However, it is now the custom for popes to choose a name after their election.  As part of tradition, Peter, the name of the first pope, is not chosen.

The ten most common papal names are the following:

John, Gregory, Benedict, Clement, Innocent, Leo, Pius, Stephen, Boniface, Urban.

Double names are an innovation.  The first pope to take a double name was Pope John Paul I in 1978.

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