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7 Fun facts about the pope

Antoine Mekary

Philip Kosloski - published on 03/14/21

Does the pope have an annual salary? Why does the pope wear white?

The papacy is fascinating to many people and mysterious to others.

Here is a brief list of 7 fun facts about the pope that help explain the papacy and its traditions.

  1. Why does the pope wear white? – Pius V did not wish to give up the habit of St. Dominic de Guzman that marked him as a member of the Order of Preachers. The distinctive white robes have since become standard papal apparel.
  2. History behind red and black papal shoes – Pope Francis initially chose to wear the red shoes only indoors and opted for the black outdoor shoes he has always worn — and with which he arrived to the Vatican — as a sign of humility and austerity.
  3. Why the pope wears a “pointed” hat– The more prominent hat that bishops wear is the miter and denotes the authority of the bishop.
  4. History of the “zucchetto,” the white hat the pope always wears – Literally translated to “little pumpkin” from Italian, the zuchetto’s original version was a felt skullcap known as the pileolus, meant to keep clerics’ heads warm in the cold.
  5. Does the pope have an annual salary? – In 2001 there were rumors that St. John Paul II made a decent salary, but the New York Times reported, “Vatican spokesman, Joaquín Navarro-Valls, ended speculation about the pope’s salary, saying, ‘The pope does not and has never received a salary.'”
  6. Here are 10 official titles of the pope and their meaning – Over time the pope has gained many different titles that reflect different aspects of his ministry.
  7. What do Catholics mean by apostolic succession? – Apostolic succession refers to the belief that today’s bishops in the Catholic Church are direct successors of the apostles.


Read more:
What is the annual salary of Pope Francis?

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