St. Gregory VII, Pope
May 25, 2024
An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 25 of May, repeating indefinitely
In the eleventh century the Church, held in subjection by lay princes, was ravaged by grave disorders in the moral life of the clergy. But it was not long before a movement for reform began to take shape. To this a monk of Cluny, Hildebrand, gave his adhesion. He was the principal advisor of Alexander II and became Pope himself in 1073, under the name of Gregory VII. He openly opposed the abuse of lay investiture, the source of the evils from which the Church was suffering. His energetic policy earned for him the enmity of the Emperor, Henry IV, whose armed intervention forced him to leave Rome. He died at Salerno on May 25, 1085, apparently defeated, but the principles for which he suffered were not long in finding acceptance on all sides.