Saint of the Day – 6 June – Blessed Innocenty Józef Wojciech Guz OFM (1890-1940) Priest of the Franciscan Conventual and Martyr of the Nazi Regime – born as Józef Adalbert Guz on 8 March 1890 in n Lemberg, Austria (present-day Poland) and died from trauma resulting from having a charged fire hose stuffed down his throat on 6 June 1940 in the prison camp at Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg, Oberhavel, Germany. He was 50 years old. Additional Memorial – 12 June as one of the 108 Polish Martyrs of World War II.
After high school Jozef tried to join the Jesuits but was turned down. On 25 August 1908 be joined the Franciscans, taking the name Innocenty. He studied philosophy and theology in Krakow, Poland and was ordained on 2 June 1914. He served as a Parish Priest in a number of cities and worked with Saint Maximilian Kolbe.
He was a confessor to a Franciscan monastery at Niepokalanów, Poland from 1933 to 1936, vice-master of clerics and singing teacher in the minor seminary and Parish Priest in Grodno, Poland.
He was imprisoned by invading Russia troops on 21 March 1940 for the crime of being a Polish Priest but he managed to escape and went to the German zone, where he was arrested by the Gestapo. He was sent to several prisons before finally ending at the concentration camp at Sachsenhausen where he was severely beaten and put to forced labour. When he could not work, owing to a broken leg, he was nearly drowned and finally murdered.
He was Beatified on 13 June 1999 by St Pope John Paul II at Warsaw, Poland. Below are the Franciscan Martyrs of the World War II.