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St Pedro Calungsod

Catechist and martyr, ca. 1654-1672

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His life:

+ Pedro was born in Ginatilan, Philippines.

+ Educated by the Jesuits, he learned to write and speak Visayan, Spanish, and Chamorro. A gifted young man, he was also trained in painting, singing, and carpentry. He began to work alongside the Spanish Jesuit missionaries as a lay catechist.

+ In 1668, he accompanied the missionaries to the Mariana Islands. Despite the violent opposition they encountered, the missionaries succeeded in spreading the Christian Faith in a number of villages.

+ Saint Pedro Calungsod was martyred on April 2, 1672, at Tomhom, Guam, while trying to defend Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores from an attacking mob. He was canonized in 2012.

+ Because they were martyred together, the Church celebrates the memory of both Saint Pedro Calungsod and Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores on April 2.

Fun fact:

Pope Saint John Paul II took special interest in the process of the beatification of Saint Pedro because he wanted to be sure to include a young Asian layperson in the first beatification ceremony of the Jubilee Year 2000.

Quote:

“From his childhood, Pedro Calungsod declared himself unwaveringly for Christ and responded generously to his call. Young people today can draw encouragement and strength from the example of Pedro, whose love of Jesus inspired him to devote his teenage years to teaching the faith as a lay catechist.”—Pope Saint John Paul II

Prayer

We humbly beseech the mercy of your majesty, almighty and merciful God, that, as you have poured the knowledge of your Only Begotten Son into the hearts of the peoples by the preaching of the blessed Martyrs Pedro and Diego Luis, so, through their intercession, we may be made steadfast in the faith. 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.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Martyrs—For Several Missionary-Martyrs)

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