Soon to be beatified 38 Albanian martyrs

The martyrs at the main Tirana square during the Pope visit - 2014

 Soon to be beatified 38 Albanian martyrs killed during the communist regime. "The process has now arrived at the conclusion to the Holy See, and before long time the Holy Father will make his decision about," confirmed Bishop Marcello Semeraro, bishop of Albano and secretary of the Council of Cardinals instituted by Pope Francis.

The meeting between Don Simon and Pope during his apostolic trip in Albania

The anti-Christian persecution perpetrated in Albania is "probably the most tragic of those that occurred in the past century," he recalled Semeraro stressing that "the historical documents show that for all these martyrs death was caused" dalla odium fidei". Among the records of the trial, were the bishop had access to as a member of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, "are to many the eyewitnesses that they return what neither the regime nor the time managed to erase, ie the torment of bodies, taking emerge at the same time the fortitude of these Christians in front of their captors who wanted to take away hope, not only the faith in the hearts of those people. "

In short, therefore, the two bishops Vincent Prennushi and Fran Gjini, diocesan priests and religious (Franciscan and Jesuit), a seminarian, three layman and the twenty-two years-old Maria Tuci, extractor Stigmatine, will be beatified.

Theirs is a story of harassment and abuse. No coincidence that Pope Francis, on the occasion of his visit in September 2014, did not hesitate to define Albania "a nation of martyrs" after listening to two survivors, Sister Maria Kaleta and Don Ernest Simoni. The embrace of the Pope, evidently moved, the Albanian priest who for nearly 28 years has been subjected to torture, imprisonment, forced labor, went around the world.

And today the witness of faith of Don Simoni, who forgave his captors and calls for them to the mercy of God, still resonates strongly in a world plagued by fear and violence, where the martyrdom continues to be the news almost daily. "This is an Albanian martyr," said Pope Francis presenting Don Simoni to  the Archbishop Georg Gänswein, prefect of the Pontifical Household, at the General Audience yesterday when the priest, Muolo and Sister Marisa Orizio, commercial manager of ' Pauline publishing, presented the book. "I remember well what she said in the Cathedral of Shkodra," smiled Bergoglio who stooped to kiss the hands of Don Simoni.

A moment of the presantation of the book of Muolo
"We live only in the present, while the Church is living the past and towards the future: this is a lesson in courage, but also of strength in weakness," noted Don Marco Gnavi, parish priest of Santa Maria in Trastevere, for which the book "returns the face, the strength, the eloquence in people, to whom the freedom and family was taken away, who suffered hell, but still preserved the faith." And Don Simoni, Gnavi concluded, "it is a witness of the Gospel in the world that speaks a language understandable that whoever faces the evil with the weapons of the good and stays true to its roots also helps others to find new resources.


Soon to be beatified 38 Albanian martyrs Soon to be beatified 38 Albanian martyrs Saturday, April 23, 2016 Rating: 5
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