Life of Saint Paul

Saul of Tarsus

St. Paul was born Saul in the first decade of the first century A.D. in Tarsus, the capital of the ancient Roman region of Cilicia in what is now Turkey.

Though he never met Jesus Christ, he joined the first Christians after a dramatic conversion on the road to Damascus, as told in the Acts of the Apostles, one of the Bible's New Testament books.

Baptized as Paul, he traveled around part of what is now Turkey as well as ancient Greece and Rome, founding a number of religious communities.

Paul's thought largely influenced Christian doctrine by means of 13 or 14 letters, the Pauline epistles, included in the New Testament. Perhaps his most recognizable passage—to modern wedding guests, anyway—is his poetic definition of love ("Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast. … ").

According to later reports, in A.D. 65 Paul of Tarsus was imprisoned in Rome, beheaded, and then buried in the family tomb of a devout Roman noblewoman, Matrona Lucilla
"Around A.D. 320 Emperor Constantine built a first small basilica to receive the pilgrims visiting Saint Paul's tomb," Filippi said.
"In A.D. 390 Emperor Theodosius enlarged the building and encased Paul's remains in a sarcophagus located on view in the middle of the basilica—the same sarcophagus we found."

"We know for sure it's the same object because the stone coffin is embedded in the layer of the Theodosian basilica," he continued.

In A.D. 433 part of the building collapsed during an earthquake. In the course of renovations the floor was elevated. The sarcophagus was buried and covered by a marble tombstone.

In 1823 a fire completely destroyed the ancient basilica, and the modern Saint Paul's Outside-the-Walls was built on the site.

"The sarcophagus and the tombstone were covered by concrete and debris, on top of which the main altar, named the Papal Altar, was placed," Filippi said.

Paul in Athens

Paul on the Hill of Mars

Other Saints of the Church

God BlessYou!