Leo | Pope

● Memorial Day Orthodox: February 18, November 12
● Name means: the lion (Latin.)
● Pope
● Born around 400 in Tuscany, Italy

● Died on November 10, 461 in Rome
Saint Leo came from the Tuscan nobility and became a priest at an early age. He later rose to
become Archdeacon of the Church of Rome, and in 440 he was elected in absentia to succeed
Pope Celestine during a mission to Gaul. He distinguished himself above all in the fight against
heresies. When the pseudo-council of Ephesus of 449, which Leo himself called a synod of
robbers, condemned and deposed the Holy Patriarch Flavian of Constantinople (February 16) as
a result of the intrigues of the monophysite heretic Eutychés and the influential minister
Chrysáphios, the pope allowed the decisions of these unlawful Annul Assembly by Synod of
Western Bishops. Even before Flavianos was deposed, Leo had sent the Patriarch a letter in
which he clearly stated the belief of the Church regarding the two natures of our Lord Jesus
Christ. At the synod of robbers in Ephesus this letter was rejected by the heretics, but at the 4th
Ecumenical Council in Chalcedon of 451 (13-19 July) it was solemnly read before all the Holy
Fathers, and they approved it, unanimously exclaiming: “This is the faith of the apostles, this is
the faith of the fathers. Peter spoke through Leo’s mouth!”.
After Saint Leo had confronted the Hun Attila and his hordes near Mantua in 452, thereby
causing his retreat, and in 455 had persuaded the Vandal Genseric to renounce the pillage of
Rome and the slaughter of its inhabitants, he devoted the rest of his life to consolation and
rebuilding its sorely tried faithful, rebuilding Christian life in the city and fighting to defend the
dogma of Chalcedon, threatened by the reaction of the many Monophysites, especially in the
Church of Alexandria. He passed away in peace in 461, after a 21-year tenure.