Roman Martyrology: In Greece. Advisor to Pope Gregory III. 91st pope. First pope after Saint Gregory the Great to not seek imperial confirmation on his election. Negotiated peace between the Lombards and Greek empire. Restored the Lateran palace and many churches around Rome. Encourged the missionary work of Saint Boniface, and appointed Saint Abel as archbishop of Rheims, France.
St. Zachary was born at Calabria, Italy. Son of Polichronius, but little else is known of his early life.
Deacon, then a Benedictine monk from Greece. He became a cardinal and then pope. In his time, there was fighting all over Italy. Pope St. Zachary kept making peace and saving people from terrible wars. At times he risked his life to do it.
It was because the saint was so gentle and kind that the leaders did what he asked. Even for his enemies he would do favors and give them the kindest treatment possible. He never took revenge on them. When Pope Zachary learned that the Lombards were about to attack Rome, he asked to have a meeting with their leader. The pope and Liutprand of the Lombards met. Whatever they said to each other, the results were impressive. Liutprand canceled his attack. He also returned all territory taken in that area over the previous thirty years. He even released all prisoners. Liutprand signed a twenty-year treaty in which the Romans would be guaranteed freedom from attacks from the Lombards.
St. Zachary was also known as a real father toward the poor. He built homes for the poor and for travelers. His loving heart could not bear to see people suffer. Once he heard that Venetian slavers bought slaves at Rome to sell to Saracens in Africa, Zachary bought them all so that Christians should not become the property of heathens. He called those men and scolded them for being so cruel.
Translated the Dialogues of Gregory the Great into Greek. Many of his actions among the royal powers of the day continued to echo for centuries.
When St. Zachary died in March 22, 752, all the people were saddened to have lost such a good and saintly father.