Catholic priest guillotined by Nazis is beatified in Poland

Cardinal Marcello Semeraro presides at the beatification of Fr. Jan Macha in Katowice, Poland, Nov. 20, 2021 The beatification of Fr. Jan Macha in Katowice, Poland, Nov. 20, 2021. | Screenshot from Katedra Katowice YouTube channel.

A Catholic priest guillotined by the Nazis in 1942 was declared blessed on Saturday.

Cardinal Marcello Semeraro, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, presided at the beatification of Fr. Jan Macha at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Katowice, southwest Poland, on Nov. 20.

EpiskopatNews via Flickr.

Preaching at the live-streamed Mass, the Italian cardinal said: “The witness of Jan Franciszek Macha, now blessed, to the Lord Jesus is a truly heroic page of faith and charity in the history of this Church in Upper Silesia.”

“He too died, just like the grain of wheat: he was killed by a Nazi system full of hatred for those who were sowing good, in order to show the people of today that earthly dominion is passing away, while the Kingdom of Christ — which, as its supreme law, has the commandment of charity — endures.”

EpiskopatNews via Flickr.
EpiskopatNews via Flickr.

Jan Franciszek (John Francis) Macha, known as Hanik, was born on Jan. 18, 1914, in Chorzów Stary, a village in the southern Polish province of Silesia. He had two sisters and a brother.

In 1934, he entered the Silesian Theological Seminary. He was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Katowice on June 25, 1939, just three months before Nazi Germany invaded Poland.

After a two-month substitution in his home parish, he was appointed to the parish church of St. Joseph in Ruda Śląska, a city near Katowice.

Fr. Jan Macha (1914-1942). episkopat.pl.

Fr. Jan Macha (1914-1942). episkopat.pl.

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