Skip to comments.Poland: Auschwitz martyr Kolbe remembered
Posted on 08/14/2006 11:55:37 AM PDT by lizol
Poland: Auschwitz martyr Kolbe remembered
By ASSOCIATED PRESS WARSAW, Poland
A leading Roman Catholic official led a Mass at Auschwitz on Monday to mark the 65th anniversary of the death of Maximilian Kolbe, a Franciscan friar who gained martyrdom by volunteering to die in the place of another man at the Nazi death camp.
Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, the archbishop of Krakow and the longtime secretary to the late Pope John Paul II, led the ceremony for the Polish friar whose action during World War II carries symbolic weight for the church and Catholic-Jewish relations.
Kolbe was sent to Auschwitz in 1941 after Nazi officials discovered he had been hiding Jews. He was executed after he volunteered to take the place of a condemned prisoner with a wife and children.
Dziwisz prayed for forgiveness for those who killed Kolbe and called on those gathered to remember his martyrdom. Kolbe was canonized by John Paul in 1982.
A truly great saint.
As I understand it, he doesn't even get a cross marker at Auschwitz.
I wonder why not. =( Perhaps people forget that thousands of Christians were sent their death too.
A very holy saint. It is hard to be forgiving when one ponders the magnitude of the crimes committed by the Germans. They murdered the best of a generation.
When I was there he did... did something change?
St. kolbe bump!
Millions, in fact -- although not all for being Christian.
If You want to see the difference between Islam and Christianity see Maximilian Kolbe, a Franciscan friar who gained martyrdom by volunteering to die in the place of another man at the Nazi death camp.If Kolbe had been an Islamic scumbag he would have volunteered to die ONLY to kill more innocent life !!!
My RC church in PA is actually named after him. His story is truly inspiring.
See, now THIS is a TRUE martyr.
Prayers offered up in honor of his sacrifice.
I disagree with a lot of Kolbe's views on Jews and capitalism, but you can't say anything bad about a man who would give his life for a stranger. It is inspirational.
Except for the motive of the switch and its effect on the survivor, this reminds me of the Anthony Hopkins movie The Tenth Man.
great post - thank you
Kolbe has faith of steel, and guts that most men cannot even fathom.
I don't know about the cross marker, but there's a noteworthy shrine devoted to him in the cell where he died--at least there was in '99 when I visited Auschwitz.
His body was burned.
Where? I didn't see it.
He was interviewed by Fatima -- see more information on my Pilgrimage thread.
"No man hath greater love than this, than a man lay down his life for his friends."
I thought you were talking about Jim Kolbe. I could not figure out how he was ever a martyr. I know he was never one for the Republican Party.
He died in a dark room a colitary starvation room where they put all the people chosen to starve to death -- His cell is where he was held captive.
At least that was my understanding from the tour guide we had through Block 18.
Oops -- He died in a dark room a colitary starvation room where they put all the people chosen to starve to death
He died in a dark room a solitary starvation room where they put all the people chosen to starve to death
the only thing greater, I think, than being my parents' son, my sisters' brother, my brothers' brother; the only thing greater than the awesome privilege of being an American, is being a Catholic. And how I thank God for it.
Amen to prayers for Steve Centanni today.
Pray also for priests in difficult situations and especially the frail and elderly who continue to serve in parishes.
I was there 4 years ago and there was a memorial, wreath, cross etc. Perhaps it was just left by a visitor?
Isn't the resemblence amazing.
No, not really. I think you are seeing what you want to see. They don't look alike. Especially around the mouth. But your religious intent to get the Fox reporter freed with the help of the saint is admirable.
He was a truly great saint. I took him as my confirmation name.
August 14, 2007
St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe
I dont know whats going to become of you! How many parents have said that? Maximilian Mary Kolbes reaction was, I prayed very hard to Our Lady to tell me what would happen to me. She appeared, holding in her hands two crowns, one white, one red. She asked if I would like to have themone was for purity, the other for martyrdom. I said, I choose both. She smiled and disappeared. After that he was not the same.
He entered the minor seminary of the Conventual Franciscans in Lvív (then Poland, now Ukraine), near his birthplace, and at 16 became a novice. Though he later achieved doctorates in philosophy and theology, he was deeply interested in science, even drawing plans for rocket ships.
Ordained at 24, he saw religious indifference as the deadliest poison of the day. His mission was to combat it. He had already founded the Militia of the Immaculata, whose aim was to fight evil with the witness of the good life, prayer, work and suffering. He dreamed of and then founded Knight of the Immaculata,, a religious magazine under Marys protection to preach the Good News to all nations. For the work of publication he established a City of the ImmaculataNiepokalanowwhich housed 700 of his Franciscan brothers. He later founded one in Nagasaki, Japan. Both the Militia and the magazine ultimately reached the one-million mark in members and subscribers. His love of God was daily filtered through devotion to Mary.
In 1939 the Nazi panzers overran Poland with deadly speed. Niepokalanow was severely bombed. Kolbe and his friars were arrested, then released in less than three months, on the feast of the Immaculate Conception.
In 1941 he was arrested again. The Nazis purpose was to liquidate the select ones, the leaders. The end came quickly, in Auschwitz three months later, after terrible beatings and humiliations.
A prisoner had escaped. The commandant announced that 10 men would die. He relished walking along the ranks. This one. That one. As they were being marched away to the starvation bunkers, Number 16670 dared to step from the line. I would like to take that mans place. He has a wife and children. Who are you? A priest. No name, no mention of fame. Silence. The commandant, dumbfounded, perhaps with a fleeting thought of history, kicked Sergeant Francis Gajowniczek out of line and ordered Father Kolbe to go with the nine. In the block of death they were ordered to strip naked and the slow starvation began in darkness. But there was no screamingthe prisoners sang. By the eve of the Assumption four were left alive. The jailer came to finish Kolbe off as he sat in a corner praying. He lifted his fleshless arm to receive the bite of the hypodermic needle. It was filled with carbolic acid. They burned his body with all the others. He was beatified in 1971 and canonized in 1982.