Historical Events in Church Annals for November 19

Pope St. Hilary

Pope from 461-468 and guardian of Church unity. He was born in Sardinia, Italy, and was a papal legate to the Robber Council of Ephesus in 449, barely escaping with his life from this affair. Hilary was used by Pope St. Leo I the Great on many assignments. When Leo died, Hilary was elected pope and consecrated on November 19,461. He worked diligently to strengthen the Church in France and Spain, calling councils in 462 and 465. Hilary also rebuilt many Roman churches and erected the chapel of St. John Lateran. He also publicly rebuked Emperor Anthemius in St. Peter’s for supporting the Macedonian heresy and sent a decree to the Eastern bishops validating the decisions of the General Councils of Nicaea, Ephesus, and Chalcedon. Hilary consolidated the Church in Sandi, Africa, and Gaul. He died in Rome on February 28.


461 A.D.
Pope Saint Hilary
becomes the 46th successor of Peter when this Cagliarian-born priest succeeds the Pope Saint Leo the Great who he followed in political thought, deciding that a certain level of culture was needed in order to become a priest and that popes and bishops should not nominate their successors. Hilary would also institute an apostolic vicariate in Spain.


498 A.D.
Death of Pope Anastasius II
, 50th successor of Peter, who had been elected on November 24, 496. During his two year pontificate he brought about the conversion of Clovis, King of the Franks, and of his people. It was the beginning of a long faith relationship with France. Unfortunately Anastasius was weak with the schismatics and was even accused of heresy. It was this Pope who the poet Dante Alighieri placed in hell in “Dante’s Inferno” but it was unfair for Anastasius was a good man who the opposition painted as weak and incompetent.




Pope Boniface VIII

Benedetto Caetani was born in 1235 of a noble family in Anagni, Italy. It is believed that Cardinal Caetani, one of the greatest jurists of his age, pressured his predecessor, Pope Celestine V, a "simple-minded recluse," to abdicate and to simultaneously issue a papal resignation constitution legalizing a pope’s right to abdicate. Cardinal Caetani was quickly elected by the conclave on Christmas Eve 1294, and amid much pomp and celebrity, Pope Boniface VIII was elevated and coronated on January 23, 1295.

1302 A.D.
Pope Boniface VIII
issues his famous “Unam sanctam” Papal Bull on the supremacy of the spiritual over the temporal power. It would have had even more impact had it not been for Boniface’s bitter fued with Charles IV, equally stubborn king of France.


1523 A.D.
Cardinal Giulio de’ Medici
is chosen 219th successor of Peter, taking the name Pope Clement VII. This Firenze-born pontiff would go on to reign for 11 years, but was unable to curb the bitter struggle between Catholics and the Lutherans of the Protestant Revolt. He would excommunicate King Henry VIII and the faith would be lost in England with the establishment of the State-run Anglican Church. Clement celebrated the 9th Jubilee in1525. 1544 A.D. Pope Paul III, 220th successor of Peter, officially announces the landmark 19th Ecumenical Council, also known as the Council of Trent in the Tridentine mountain village in northern Italy.