Monday, the 19th week of Ordinary Time
Mass at noon: Tuesday - Friday
Saturday at 5:00 - Sunday at 9:00 and 11:15am
When the people gather for prayer, all are welcome.
Saint of the day - Maximilian Mary Kolbe
Readings for today’s Mass
What makes a death a martyrdom is not always easy to discern. Primary is that the person died in witness to the faith. Other factors that also weigh in include the death being caused by an enemy out of hatred for the faith, the individual voluntarily accepting their death, and then the actual death itself.
Determining martyrdom can be controversial. Take the case of Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador. He was slain in 1980 by a military death squad while celebrating Mass. He was an advocate of Liberation Theology and spoke out against poverty, social injustice, assassinations, and torture inflicted by the hands of the US backed revolutionary government. Immediately upon his death, he was hailed a martyr by El Salvador and much of the Latin world. A movement to have him declared a martyr was blocked by then Pope John Paul II. Two factors contributing to that action by the Vatican were Romero's embrace of Liberation Theology, which some saw as heretical, and that his death was not brought on by an enemy's hatred for the faith, but by Romero's involvement in the political affairs of El Salvador.
In February, Pope Francis formally recognised Archbishop Romero as a martyr, having been killed “in hatred of the faith” and not for purely political reasons. This cleared the way for his beatification as a martyr. At the same time, Francis also signed a decree recognising the martyrdom of two Polish Franciscans and an Italian priest who were murdered by Shining Path guerrillas in Peru in 1991.