Monday, November 12, 2007

St. Josaphat

Wow! What a saint! Learning about the lives of saints is so interesting. They really help us put our own troubles in perspective.
(c. 1580-1623) St. Josaphat was the first eastern saint to be formally canonized. He was ordained a priest of the Byzantine rite and became an advocate for the union of the Ukrainian Church with Rome. He became bishop of Vitebsk, Russia. The diocese was a mess. Clergy were marrying, there was widespread opposition to Rome, ect. He put reforms into effect which were unpopular among certain groups. The archbishop of Polotsk claimed the Josaphat was a Latin priest and said Roman Catholicism was not for the Ruthenians. Riots broke out and people began to choose sides.
Josaphat was wrongly accused of causing trouble, and so he went to meet the
Photo Credit: Catholic Culture
opposition despite threats against him. One priest named Elias, who had harassed Josaphat numerous times was jailed. Protesters demanded Elias' release, and even though Josaphat complied, he was beaten and shot to death, and his body was thrown in the river.
All information from Pocket Dictionary of Saints

No comments: