Saint of the Day ~ September 2

BLESSED MARTYRS of SEPTEMBER (d.1792), priests and religious martyrs

Today, the Church honors a group of 191 faithful Christians who were martyred during the French Revolution on September 2nd and 3rd, 1792.

After refusing to take an oath in support of the Civil Constitution of the Clergy – which was signed into law in 1791 and required all priests and religious to take an oath which amounted to a denial of the faith, an act condemned by the Vatican which placed Catholic priests under the authority and control of the state – 191 priests and religious brothers and sisters were imprisoned in a Carmelite convent, and then massacred in the space of two days at the hands of bloodthirsty revolutionary mobs.

These faithful disciples of Jesus Christ, in the midst of a war-torn Europe, had been the helpless victims of a wild revolutionary ideology. As usual, however, the spiritual heroism exemplified in their faithfulness to the Church and defense of the papacy have continued to be remembered long after the names of their blood-thirsty executioners had long been forgotten. And their faithfulness saved the reputation of France as the “eldest daughter of the Church”.

They were beatified as a group, each person being honored with the title Blessed, on October 17, 1926 by Pope Pius XI.

We commemorate their joint feastday on September 2.

(From catholicnewsagency.com, saints.sqpn.com, americancatholic.org and blessedcatholicsaints.blogspot.com)

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PRAYER

(The following prayer is from the Roman Breviary from the Commons for Several Martyrs)

“All-powerful and Ever-living God, turn our weakness into strength. As You gave Your one hundred ninety-one martyrs the courage to suffer death for Christ, give us the courage to live in faithful witness to You.

“Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

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