Death of Saint Blandina and the Martyrs of Lyons, France. The Christians there were falsely accused of cannibalism and incest and wrongly forced to confess to their crimes, then torn with iron hooks and scalded with hot irons. Through it all Blandina maintained her faith, exclaiming "I am a Christian, and there is no evil done among us."
Death of Saint Erasmus, also known as Saint Elmo, the bishop of Campagna, Italy who was martyred under the persecution of Diocletian though it was not easy for the pagan emperor. Elmo was hurled into a fiery pit but emerged unscathed (thus the phrase "St. Elmo's fire") and then imprisoned. An angel freed him and led him to Formiae where he eventually died of his wounds in dignity. He is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers and is patron saint of sailors.
After a vacancy of almost one year, Pope Benedict I is elected as the 62nd successor of Peter on this date. He would strive to restore order in Italy and in France where the barbaric invasions had thrown those countries into turmoil.
Death of Pope Saint Eugene I, 75th successor of Peter who decreed the perpetual observance of chastity for all priests.
Death of Saint Nicephorus, Patriarch of Constantinople and staunch opponent of iconoclasm. Because of fierce opposition from the Armenian Emperor, he was exiled to a monastery where he lived the last fifteen years of his life.
Marriage of Geoffrey Plantagenet of Anjou to Queen Matilda of England, whose son Henry II began the line of the Plantagenet dynasty and solidified Holy Mother Church in England until the Windsor monarchs and the rebellion of Henry VIII.
Pope Paul III, 220th successor of Peter and pontiff who gave official approval for the Jesuits and called the the 19th Ecumenical Council, publicly declares that, despite the naive perception by so many Europeans that they were savages, the Native American Indians have souls and are therefore to be accorded the dignity of man and could not be enslaved.
Birth of Giuseppe Melchiorre Sarto to a village postman and a seamstress in Upper Venetia, Italy. He would go on to become the holy Pope Saint Pius X, 257th successor of Peter and the Pope who made Holy Communion available to all, especially children from seven years of age up.
The first African Roman Catholic bishop in America Bishop James Healy is consecrated for the Diocese covering the state of Maine.