Two weeks after becoming the 138th successor of Peter, Pope Gregory V crowns Otto III as Holy Roman Emperor in St. Peter's, making Otto protector of the Church. Coincidentally, it was also on the Solemnity of the Ascension just as we celebrate it today in 1998.
Death of Saint Godric, an English hermit who was known for his austerity, gifts of prophecy, knowledge of events far off in the future, and visions. He died on this date in Finchdale, England in a hermitage.
Death of Conrad IV, King of Germany and Holy Roman Emperor and son of Frederick II of Hohenstaufenwho, along with his father and his sons were thorns in the side of the Holy See.
Birth of Philip II who would go on to become the King of Spain and form an alliance with the Holy League that would lead to the victory over the Turks at Lepanto fifty years later. His monarchy was one of contradiction. While his policies and military prowess helped preserve Catholicism in Spain, his marriage to Queen Mary of England, daughter of Henry VIII by Catherine of Aragon, backfired in that the English, because of their distrust for her and the Spanish Catholic influence, rebelled and embraced Protestantism in retaliation for the harshness of Mary's actions as Queen, dubbing her "Bloody Mary" for her order to burn heretics at the stake.
Catholic Bishops and clergy are ostracized in Geneva, Switzerland as the Protestant Reformation is officially adopted bringing great consternation to Pope Paul III.
Death of Spanish explorer Hernando DeSoto who had discovered the Mississippi River and helped bring the faith to middle America through the missionaries he had in his garrisons.
Death of Saint Eugene de Mazenod, Bishop and Founder of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate in Marseilles, France. He was canonized by Pope John Paul II on December 3, 1995 and his feast is celebrated with great triumph in Canada. For more, see WEEKEND DAILY LITURGY