The Popecast-logo

The Popecast

History Podcasts >

Short bios on the popes of the Roman Catholic Church, and periodic interviews with experts and commentators on the papacy & Church history. Become a patron and find extra bonus content at

Short bios on the popes of the Roman Catholic Church, and periodic interviews with experts and commentators on the papacy & Church history. Become a patron and find extra bonus content at
More Information


United States


Short bios on the popes of the Roman Catholic Church, and periodic interviews with experts and commentators on the papacy & Church history. Become a patron and find extra bonus content at






The Brothers Pope (Sisinnius & Constantine)

It’s a Popecast first, folks. The first time we’re covering two popes in a single episode AND the first of three times in Church history that two brothers each held the Chair of Peter – and interestingly enough, also the first of three times that the brothers reigned back-to-back. Mama must’ve been so proud. SUPPORT THE POPECAST: LINKS * Pope Sisinnius ( (Flocknote's Popes in a Year) * Pope Sisinnius...


Another Very Bad Pope (Alexander VI)

In 1492, something else happened besides Columbus sailing the ocean blue, namely, that the most notorious pope EVER ascended to the Chair of Peter. This week it's the guy who typically tops the list of every rundown of the so-called “Bad Popes”, and who was described by contemporary historian as “more evil and more lucky than perhaps any pope before him”. SUPPORT THE POPECAST: LINKS * Letter of Pope Pius II rebuking Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia...


The Popecast's Guide to Pope Benedict XVI's Letter on the Sex Abuse Scandal

This episode serves as a brief recap and analysis on Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI's recent letter on the Church's sexual abuse crisis – paired with the audio version of the letter released exclusively by The Popecast – for those who have neither the time nor the interest to wade through the minefield of Catholic Twitter to sort it all out. LINKS MENTIONED ON THE EPISODE * Full Text of Pope Emeritus Benedict's letter: LINK...


EXTRA: Audio of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI's Letter on Church Sex Abuse Scandal

On April 10, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI released a letter addressing the scandal of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church – of which the full audible reading can be found here. The retired pope gave historical background to how the scandal came to be, how it's affected the formation of priests in seminaries, and what the Church ought to do about it. FULL TEXT: SUPPORT THE POPECAST...


The Abuse Scandal, Human Nature, & the Altar of the Heart (Interview w/ Dr. Chad Pecknold)

Dr. Chad Pecknold, associate professor of theology at the Catholic University of America, joins the Popecast this week to talk about the present scandal in the Church, human nature, St. Augustine's two Cities, and the papacy's role in securing the Church as a divine institution. Dr. Pecknold will be speaking at Healing the Breach of Trust on March 26, a day of talks at Catholic University of America and part of a series of planned conferences on the Church's current crisis. Dr. Pecknold's...


The Pope Who Didn't Do Anything Funny (Pope St. Hilarius)

This week’s pope has a bit of an ironic name. During his six years in the Chair of Peter, nothing too exciting happened, and certainly nothing that seemed to live up to, uh, how we currently define "hilarious." Become a patron and get early access to Popecast episodes, ask a question to be answered on the show, and get special bonus content – LINKS Pope St. Hilarius"Four Saints with Laughably Ridiculous Names"Pope St. HilarusPope Hilarius


Interview w/ Trent Horn (Apologist, Speaker, & Author)

Catholic apologist, speaker, and author Trent Horn joins Matt on The Popecast this week. Topics covered (among others) include: BECOME A PATRON: LINKS (mentioned in this episode) Bad ShepherdsUt Unum SintDonum Veritatis The Papacy: What the Pope Does and Why It Matters Special Guest: Trent Horn.


EXTRA: The Feast of the Chair of St. Peter

Normally the Church celebrates feast days for persons – men and women from every age who the Church has held up as models of holy living – but today is a day that celebrates a chair. Well, at least what the chair represents. BECOME A PATRON: LINKS General Audience, February 22, 2006Feast of the Chair of St. Peter


The Pope Who Had RBF (Servant of God, Pope Benedict XIII)

This week’s pope didn’t want the job, and lived like he didn’t have the job, which got him in some hot water. But the people who worked closest with him knew him only as the parish priest of Rome, and ultimately his personal virtue carried the day. Plus he had RBF. BECOME A PATRON:


The Pope Who Was BFFs With Charlemagne (Pope Adrian I)

This week’s pope is defined by two words. Charlemagne and iconoclasm. And no, I’m not talking the Trump Twitter kind of iconoclasm. BECOME A PATRON: LINKS Pope Adrian IPope Adrian IPope Adrian IThe Republic of St. PeterThe History of Charles the Great Duodecimum Saeculum DUBIA LINKS LINKThe Catholic Herald LINKN.C. Register LINK


The Pope Who Outsmarted Napoleon (Servant of God, Pope Pius VII)

The pope we’re talking about today was mild-mannered and monkish on the outside, but tough as nails on the inside. He’s went toe to toe with the tiny tyrant for 10 years, and was imprisoned for 6 of them. Never one to let the Church be bullied, he returned the papacy to the respect it deserved, after decades of being drug through the proverbial mud. One of my personal favorites, Pope Pius VII. BECOME A PATRON: FURTHER READING: Diu Satis (On a Return to Gospel...


The Pope Who Made the Emperor Kneel in the Snow (St. Gregory VII)

This week’s pope was once described as the epitome of a Christian gentleman, a man of universally recognized virtue, and a profound scholar. He was never one to back down from a fight, and stopped at nothing to reform a broken Church. 1000 years ago, that is. BECOME A PATRON: FURTHER READING: The Cluniac ReformLetter of Gregory VII to the German BishopsPope St. Gregory VIIPope St. Gregory VII


The Pope Who Built the Wall (St. Leo IV)

A worker of miracles, a battler of barbarians, and someone described as a man who lived to perfection the saying “pray as if everything depends on God, and work as if everything depends on you.” This week it's Pope #103, St. Leo IV. FOLLOW & SUPPORT THE PODCAST: LINKS AMAZON


The Pope They Called a Heretic (Honorius I) - Infallibility Series, Pt. 3

Wait, a pope was actually condemned as a heretic by an ecumenical council of the Church? Sounds like the jig is up – papal infallibility is a false doctrine! Right? Well...we shall see. SUPPORT THE PODCAST: LINKS- Letter from Pope Honorius to St. Honorius of Canterbury- Popecast on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook – @thepopecast - [BOOK] Pope Fiction (by Patrick Madrid):


The Pope Who Was Once an Antipope (Vigilius) - Infallibility Series, Pt. 2

This week's pope was one of the only guys to have been an anti-pope before getting legitimately elected, he pretty much killed his predecessor, and was a bit of a wuss to boot. Yes, even the Bishop of Rome can be a weak-willed flip-flopper, and it followed him around during all 18 years in office. SUPPORT THE POPECAST: LINKS- [BOOK] Pope Fiction (by Patrick Madrid): Popecast on Twitter: @thepopecast- Matthew on Twitter: @MatthewJSewell


Gaudete et Exsultate: Interview w/ Katie Prejean McGrady

Speaker & author Katie Prejean McGrady joins the Popecast to chat about Pope Francis' new apostolic exhortation, Gaudete et Exsultate (Rejoice & Be Glad), her recent trip to Rome for a pre-Synod gathering of young people, and how Pope Francis knows exactly what he's doing in his mission of evangelization. Support the Podcast: LINKS Gaudete et Exsultate (FULL TEXT)Follow: Your Lifelong Adventure with JesusSpeech by Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio (aka Pope Francis) pre-2013...


The First Pope to Not Be a Saint (Liberius) - Infallibility Series, Pt. 1

How would you like to be the first pope to not be named a saint? First in 350 years and the only non-saint pope in 5 centuries was still pretty holy, but people thought he might be heretic. Also, people use him as an argument against papal infallibility. SUPPORT THE POPECAST: Popecast on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook – @thepopecast [BOOK] Pope Fiction (by Patrick Madrid):


The Pope who Condemned the Sexual Revolution (St. Paul VI)

Paul VI was nothing short of a prophet. He called out society’s future ills decades before they actually happened, and reigned as pope through the assassination of an American President, the sexual revolution, and a sweeping reform in the Church. Plus … drumroll … he just became a saint. SUPPORT THE PODCAST: HUMANAE VITAE:


The Pope Who Confirmed the Canon of Scripture (St. Damasus I)

Ever wonder where the official list of the books of the Bible came from? Well, this guy you’re about to learn about is who we have to thank. Every single one of those 73 books you find in Catholic Bibles was listed out by this guy, at a meeting in Rome, 16 centuries ago. SUPPORT THE PODCAST:


The Pope Who Founded Western Civilization (St. Gregory the Great)

Lent is upon us, and we have just the pope. It’s the guy who instituted giving out ashes on Ash Wednesday. The former monk. The humble, generous pontiff who basically founded Western Civilization. SUPPORT THE POPECAST: