After several restless minutes, he turned and let his knotted legs slide over the edge of the cushions until his dirty bare feet hit the floor. In a pouch hanging from the cord around his waist was a large and misshapen iron nail. He reached inside and pushed a finger against the bent point. It hurt. He pushed harder. “No!” he said aloud, “this is not how it will be. These gifts are one thing, but I’ll never accept what will inevitably come after he returns … We must get our house in order before the persecutions begin again. This is not how it will be!”
When Constantine finally did return sixteen months later, Miltiades, the Bishop of Rome was already at peace in the catacombs beneath the city. A new court was convened and Constantine gave his approval for a much younger man named Silvester to serve as successor to Peter. Where Miltiades saw danger, Silvester saw opportunity and followed it. For the first time, the Pope would be crowned as a Prince.