How can an antipope be a saint?


St. Hippolytus of Rome was an antipope. How can he be a saint? :confused:


Wasn’t Saint Paul a Saint and he participated in persecutions of the Early Church?

Even people who sin or involved in scandal can be Saints.

God Bless


A man can be mistaken about his claim to the papacy and still go on to lead a holy life.
People can make mistakes, repent, and make reparation.

The term “anti-pope” doesn’t necessarily mean a person was a “bad” person. It means their claim to authority was not valid.


[quote=JSmitty2005]St. Hippolytus of Rome was an antipope. How can he be a saint? :confused:

St. Hippolytus was elected antipope against valid Pope Callistus c. 217, and “reigned” throughout the pontificates of Callistus’ successors until the reign of Pope Pontianus. Both Hippolytus and Pontianus were exiled to Sardinia, and there, Hippolytus reconciled with the Pope and the Roman Church. They both died there and their remains were returned to Rome, where they were honored as martyrs.


I’ve never liked using that term “antipope” so broadly - it is too negative (probably because it is immediately associated with the term ‘antiChrist’). I prefer “psuedo-pope” in some situations such as this (psuedo means ‘apparently similar but actually false’).

“anti” means ‘against’ or ‘opposed to’. There have been many antipopes (in the full sense of the word), but there have been a few psuedo-popes who were good and saintly men who really believed they had legitimate claim to the Papal office (but, alas, were mistaken - or tricked).


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