The beatification and canonization of St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe added two more definitions to Christian martyrdom. Formally, a person is martyred out of ‘hatred for the faith.’ But Pope Paul VI named him a Confessor of the Faith and a Martyr of Charity. Pope John Paul II named him a true martyr since the systematicNazi hatred for all of humanity included Christianity.
We may not undergo true martyrdom by shedding our blood but traditionally Benedictine monasticism is called, the “new martyrdom.” Confronting the wrongs of a fellow Christian, and, living with the foibles and fables of all sorts of personalities is truly a martyrdom of charity.
In the words of the psalmist, “Blessed be God who fills my soul with fire!”
St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe, pray for us!