Monday, November 12, 2012

Not Just Latins

Wen we think of Catholics, many of us still think exclusively of the Latin Rite Churches. Today's memorial of St. Josaphat reminds us of the importance of all of the Eastern Rite Churches at are as much a part on the Catholic Church as we are.

Born around the year 1580 as many priests of the time was of a noble family. Josphat at a young age embraced the Catholic faith and the reunion of the Ukrainians with the Catholic Church became a passion for him. He subsequently became the superior of several monasteries, and on November 12, 1617, was consecrated Bishop of Vitsebsk, with right of succession to the Archbishopric of Polotsk. He became archbishop in 1618. Ultimately the enemies of reunion martyred him in 1623.

He was canonized in 1867 and to this day devotion to him remains strong in the Polish community.