Friday, August 14, 2009

St Maximillian Kolbe

"Although not everyone loves the truth, only the truth can be the basis of enduring happiness. There is no one to be found in the world that does not search for happiness; indeed, in all of our actions happiness presents itself to us, in one form or another, as the end toward which we naturally tend. However, a happiness which is not built on the foundation of truth cannot endure, because everything else is a lie. The truth can be and is the only the unshakable foundation of happiness, for individuals and of all humanity."
Saint Maximilian Kolbe

In 1938, the Nazis invaded the Polish City of the Immaculate. They stopped the wonderful work going on there. In 1941, the Nazis arrested Father Kolbe. They sentenced him to hard manual labor at Auschwitz.

Three months after he arrived at Auschwitz a prisoner managed to escape. The Nazis became very angry and decided to punish the rest of the prisoners.

They decided to choose ten prisoners and put them in a bunker without food or water so that they would starve to death. All the prisoners stood straight, while ten men were pulled out of line.

One prisoner they chose was a married man with a family. He begged and pleaded to be spared for the sake of his children. Father Kolbe, who was listening, felt deeply moved and decided to help that suffering prisoner. He stepped forward and asked the commander if he could take the man's place. The commander agreed.

Father Kolbe and the other prisoners were sent into the bunker and they remained alive without food or water for many days. One by one, as they died, Father Kolbe helped and comforted them. He was the last to die on August 14, 1941.

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