Bishop and Martyr (1030-1079)
+ Stanislaus was born near Krakow, Poland, and was ordained a priest after completing his theological studies in Paris.
+ In 1072, he was ordained bishop of Krakow. As a bishop, he was beloved because of his care for the poor and he made frequent pastoral visitations of the clergy.
+ On account of his criticisms about Poland’s King Bolesław II—whom Stanislaus had excommunicated because of his sexual immorality and harsh treatment of his subjects—the king himself murdered Stanislaus as he celebrated Mass in Wawel Castle.
+ Saint Stanislaus was honored as a martyr immediately after his death and he was canonized in 1253.
Pope Saint John Paul II, who had served as archbishop of Krakow, had wanted his first visit to Poland after having been elected Pope to occur in April 1979, in honor of the 900th anniversary of the martyrdom of Saint Stanislaus. Because of opposition by Communist authorities, the visit had to be delayed until June of that year.
“The sacrament of Confirmation is received by us only once in our lifetime (just as Baptism is received only once). All of life which opens up in view of this sacrament assumes the aspect of a great and fundamental test: a test of faith and of character. Saint Stanislaus has become, in the spiritual history of the Polish people, the patron of this great and fundamental test of faith and of character. In this sense we honor him also as the patron of the Christian moral order.”—Pope Saint John Paul II
O God, for whose honor the Bishop Saint Stanislaus
fell beneath the swords of his persecutors,
grant we pray,
that we may persevere strong in faith even until death.
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)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.