St. Peter and St. Paul

The worship of Saints Peter and Paul, considered to be the champions of the Christian Church, spread to Sicily with the advent of the Normans, during the process of Latinisation and Christianisation of the island. The medieval chronicler Goffredo Malaterra notes that the Norman victory against the Saracens at Cerami, and thus the conquest of Sicily, were willed by God and St Peter. It can be assumed that the link with the first Pope symbolised that of the Normans with the Papacy itself. Peter is Christ’s beloved disciple and the first bishop of Rome. Saul, later Paul, was a persecutor of Christians who, after his conversion, began to preach the Gospel.