St. Zachary lived in the eighth century, a time when there was fighting all over Italy. Pope St. Zachary would risk his own life to make peace and save lives from the ravages of war. Because Zachary was so gentle and kind that the leaders of his time did what he asked. Even the enemies of Rome couldn't resist his kindness. even so far as preventing the Lombards to attack the city. St. Zachary also had a large heart for the poor. His loving heart could not bear to see people suffer. Once he encountered Venetian merchants selling African slaves. Zachary forbade the trafficking of human beings and paid the merchants their price, giving the slaves their liberty. When St. Zachary died in 752, all the people were saddened to have lost such a good and saintly father.
Reflection: Resolving conflicts requires great humility and compassion. Let us pray for these two virtues that were so present in the life of St. Zachary. This great Pope is the shining example of what every shepherd including parish priests should aspire to in these days of religious oppression.