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Isidore of Seville, unofficial patron saint of the Internet.

A saint (from the Latin sanctus) in Christianity is a human being who has answered the call to holiness. The term is used differently by various denominations. In high-church contexts, such as Roman Catholicism or Anglo-Catholicism, a Saint is generally one to whom has been attributed (and who has generally demonstrated) a high level of holiness and sanctity. In this use, a saint is therefore not simply a believer, but one who has been unusually transformed. On the other hand, many denominations, notably in Protestantism, emphasise the traditional New Testament meaning of the word, preferring to write saint (lower case) to refer to any believer, in continuity with the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers. Several denominations venerate the dead saints, while others vehemently reject this. Some make a distinction between a "Romish" and a "Patristic" doctrine concerning the invocation of saints, permitting the latter.

The use of the term saint is not exclusive to Christianity. In most religious cultures, there are people who have been recognised within that culture as having fulfilled the highest aspirations of religious teaching. In English, the term saint is often used to translate this idea from many world religions.

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St Peter's Square, Vatican City - April 2007.jpg
Credit: Diliff

Saint Peter's Square is located directly in front of St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, the papal enclave within Rome.

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Saint Mammes and Duke Alexander Tapestry

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A Serbian icon of Prince Jovan Vladimir, who was recognized as a saint shortly after his death
Saint Jovan Vladimir or John Vladimir (Serbian Cyrillic: Јован Владимир; died 22 May 1016) was ruler of Duklja, the most powerful Serbian principality of the time, from around 1000 to 1016. Duklja was conquered in around 1010 by the expansionist Tsar Samuel of Bulgaria, who took Jovan Vladimir prisoner. A medieval chronicle asserts that Samuel's daughter, Theodora Kosara, fell in love with Vladimir and begged her father for his hand. The tsar allowed the marriage and returned Duklja to Vladimir, who ruled as his vassal. He was acknowledged as a pious, just, and peaceful ruler. In 1016 Vladimir was beheaded in Prespa by order of Samuel's successor, Ivan Vladislav, and was buried there. He was soon recognized as a martyr and saint; his feast day is celebrated on 22 May. Kosara reburied him in Duklja, and in 1381 his relics were preserved in the Church of Saint Jovan Vladimir near Elbasan. Since 1995 the relics have been kept in the Orthodox cathedral of Tirana, Albania; on his feast day they are taken back to the church near Elbasan for a celebration. The cross Vladimir held when he was beheaded is traditionally under the care of the Andrović family from southeastern Montenegro. The cross is carried on the Feast of Pentecost in a procession to the summit of Mount Rumija. Jovan Vladimir is regarded as the first Serbian saint. He is fabled to have carried his severed head to his place of burial.




The Saints Wikiproject aims primarily at standardizing the articles about people venerated by some Christians as saints or the blessed and ensuring quality articles. If there is an interest in including saints from religions other than Christianity, please propose those changes on our talk page.

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