Pope Celestine V was born in Moline in 1215.

He was the eleventh of twelve children born to a peasant family and he became a Benedictine monk at the age of seventeen and was later ordained in Rome.

He was a great lover of solitude and this led him to lead the life of hermit in monte Morone in the Abruzzi which is why he was (before he became Pope) called Pietro di Murrone or Peter of Morone.

He lived a life of humility and self-sacrifice: he knotted his clothes to make them less comfortable and he also kept four lents a year.

Unfortunately his desire for solitude in itself caused him the fame that he so disliked and others flocked to him and followed him and his way of life. In 1264 Urban IV declared the Celestini an official branch of the Benedictine order and they numbered over 600 monks by the time of Celestine’s death.

Celestine was crowned Pope at Aquila on the 29th of August 1294. But although he was a deeply religious and spiritual man he was a terrible administrator and hated the pressures of his new office. Throughout his Papacy he relied heavily on the help of Cardinal Gaetani.

Soon his responsibilities became too much for him and he abdicated on the 13th of December 1294. Cardinal Gaetani was crowned Boniface VIII a few weeks later.

He died in the Castle of Fumone in 1296.

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