Feast of St Maximilian Kolbe

“Greater love has no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends” John 15:12

St. Maximilian Kolbe lived a life of heroic virtue doing battle with the enemies of the Church under the command of the Queen of the Universe, the Blessed Virgin Mary. He had “one freely chosen and beloved, fixed ideal … the Immaculate”, and would remind his spiritual children that only “for Her let us live, toil, suffer, and long to die.”


On the vigil of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, August 14, 1941, Father Maximilian’s two-week ordeal in the starvation bunker was brought to an end by an injection of carbolic acid. Of the ten victims, he was the last to die, very providentially on the feast of Our Lady’s Assumption into heaven! His death was the crowing of a lifetime of Marian mysticism. Years later, in June, 1979, Pope John Paul II would visit St. Maximilian’s death chamber in Auschwitz, proclaiming him “Patron Saint of our Difficult Age.”


The Homily for the Canonization of St. Maximilian Kolbe was given by Pope Saint John Paul II on October 10, 1982.

150,000 people were in attendance at St. Peter’s Square for the three-hour rite, including Franciszek Gajowniczek, a former the former Auschwitz prisoner that Saint Maximilian gave his life to save. (...)

Read full homily here.

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