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Throughout the Middle Ages he was known as "the Father of Christian Worship" because of his exceptional efforts in revising the Roman worship of his day.
A Roman senator's son and himself the Prefect of Rome at 30, Gregory tried the monastery but soon returned to active public life, ending his life and the century as pope.
Although he was the first pope from a monastic background, his prior political experiences may have helped him to be a talented administrator, who successfully established papal supremacy.
His mother and two paternal aunts are honored by Catholic and Orthodox churches as saints.
The family owned and resided in a villa suburbana on the Caelian Hill, fronting the same street (now the Via di San Gregorio) as the former palaces of the Roman emperors on the Palatine Hill opposite.
After that, there was peace in Italy, and the appearance of restoration, except that the central government now resided in Constantinople.