Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 3 October – Blessed Szilárd István Bogdánffy (1911-1953)

Saint of the Day – 3 October – Blessed Szilárd István Bogdánffy (1911-1953) aged 42, Bishop (auxilliary), Martyr, Spiritual Director, Professor – Patronages – Bishops, Priests.

Szilárd Bogdánffy was born to Hungarian parents on 21 February 1911 in the village of Feketetó, then part of Torontál County, Austria-Hungary.    He lived there with his family until 1925.   He was baptised in the parish church of Čoka to which his village belonged and where his father was a cantor.bogdanffy-szilard-zalder-andras-festmenye-print-formatum_0.jpg

The Bogdánffy family is a Transylvanian Armenian family which was granted nobility by the Habsburgs.   The Bogdánffys are a branch of an ancient Armenian Gajzágó family, one of the families that built the Transylvanian town of Szamosujvár (Armenopolis, Gherla now in Rumania) in the 18th century and which gave many Armenian Catholic (in union with Rome) Priests to the town which became the Armenian Catholic Bishopric of Transylvania.

Bogdánffy went to elementary school in Crna Bara until 1925, when the Bogdánffy family moved to Timişoara, a city in Eastern part of Banat.   There he went to the Piarists high school.   After his final exams, he was accepted to the Catholic seminary of the Latin-rite Diocese of Oradea.   He was ordained a Priest by the Bishop of Oradea Stefan Fiedler on 29 June 1934.    He continued his studies at the University of Budapest, where he earned a PhD in philosophy and dogmatics (with a thesis on “Apocalyptics in the Synoptic Gospels”).   Upon his return to Romania he became professor of the Catholic seminary in Oradea and confessor at the Ursuline convent in the city.   In 1939 he was followed by the Royal Romanian Secret Services for alleged anti-Romanian activity.   During World War II – because he was hiding Jews – he was also interrogated by the Hungarian Fascist “Nyílas” gendarmes.

After the end of the war, the new Romanian communist leadership started a campaign against the Christian religion (especially against catholic Christians).    As a consequence, the Vatican allowed secret consecration of bishops.    Fr Szilárd Bogdánffy was consecrated as Bishop of Oradea of the Latins and Auxiliary Bishop of Satu Mare on 14 February 1949 by Gerald Patrick O’Hara, Regent of the Apostolic Nunciature to Bucharest.   The new Bishop was arrested and imprisoned only two months later.430px-F6Bogdánffy_Szilárd_(1911-ca.1970)_kat._püspök

He had previously been approached, on several occasions, by representatives of the regime, with the request that he lead an “independent Romanian Latin-rite Church, with no ties to the Vatican” which he adamantly refused.   Until his death he spent four years as a captive in various prisons throughout Romania, including the evil reputed Capul-Midia camp.   He fell seriously ill, being affected by the atrocious conditions and regular torture.   In Aiud Prison, as the Byzantine rite Catholic Bishop of Lugoj, Ioan Ploscaru recalled, Bishop Bogdánffy was “humble and serene, always ready to help his fellow sufferers.”   Although suffering with serious pneumonia, the prison doctor refused him the necessary medication claiming he was not worthy of it.   He died in solitary confinement on 3 October 1953 in the prison of Aiud, Romania.

His Beatification took place on 30 October 2010 in Oradea as approved by Pope Benedict XVI.1024px-Beatification Oradea_oratio-Bogdanffy.jpg

His Beatification Mass with 200 Priests, 42 Bishops and two Cardinal.   Cardinal Péter Erdő, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, President of the Council of European Bishops’ Conferences, preached.  Cardinal Angelo Amato, President of the Congregation for causes of the Saints, presided on behalf of Pope Benedict XVI.

He is the first Catholic martyred during the Communist regime in Romania to be elevated to the honour of the altars.bl bogdanffy

stamps hungasrian saints and blesseds
The second stamp shows the 3 Hungarian Saints and Blessed

Author:

Passionate Catholic. Being Catholic is a way of life - a love affair both with God and Father, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, our most Blessed and Beloved Virgin Mother Mary and the Church. "Religion must be like the air we breathe..."- St John Bosco With the Saints, we "serve the Lord with one consent and serve the Lord with one pure language, not indeed to draw them forth from their secure dwelling-places, not superstitiously to honour them, or wilfully to rely on the, ... but silently to contemplate them for edification, thereby encouraging our faith, enlivening our patience..." Blessed John Henry Newman Prayer is what the world needs combined with the example of our lives which testify to the Light of Christ. This site will mainly concentrate on Daily Prayers, Novenas and the Memorials and Feast Days of our friends in Heaven, the Saints who went before us and the great blessings the Church provides in our Catholic Monthly Devotions. "For the saints are sent to us by God as so many sermons. We do not use them, it is they who move us and lead us, to where we had not expected to go.” Charles Cardinal Journet (1891-1975) This is a papal fidelity site. Loyal and Obedient to the Current Pope and to the Magisterium United With Him.

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