Martyrs

The Latest

Icon of the 21 Martyrs of Libya.

Vatican hosts veneration of relics of 21 Coptic martyrs of Libya on first feast day

Feb 15, 2024

By Courtney Mares

The relics of 21 Coptic martyrs killed by ISIS in Libya will be venerated in St. Peter’s Basilica on Thursday... Read more

Pope Francis at the Nagasaki Martyrs’ Monument on Nishizaka Hill Nov. 24, 2019.

The first Mexican-born martyr: a castaway friar who was crucified in Japan 

Feb 5, 2024

By ACI Prensa

Only 25 when he was killed, San Felipe de Jesus — St. Philip of Jesus — is celebrated Feb. 5... Read more

This painting of St. Peter visiting St. Agatha was created by Federico Zuccari between 1597 and 1599 for the altar of Sant’Agata in the Milan Cathedral. It was directly commissioned by Milan native Federico Borromeo, a cousin of St. Charles Borromeo.

St. Agatha, the early Church martyr who tradition says was visited by St. Peter

Feb 5, 2024

By ACI Prensa

Agatha was ruthlessly tortured and martyred under the Roman Emperor Decius in the third century and credited after her death... Read more

A lamb is wreathed in flowers during a special Mass for the feast of St. Agnes at the Basilica of St. Agnes Outside the Wall on Jan. 21, 2014.

The origins of St. Agnes, child saint and martyr

Jan 21, 2024

By Kate Quiñones

Although not much is known about the life of St. Agnes, there are many stories passed down since her martyrdom... Read more

St. Arcadius.

Today the Church honors 3 groups of martyrs as Christians worldwide continue to face persecution

Jan 12, 2024

By Tyler Arnold

On Jan. 12, we honor the feast days of several martyrs and groups of martyrs at a time when there... Read more

Nicaraguan Bishop Rolando Álvarez.

Report: Over 130 Catholic priests and religious arrested, kidnapped, or murdered in 2023

Jan 10, 2024

By Tyler Arnold

Throughout 2023, more than 130 Catholic priests and religious were either arrested, kidnapped, or murdered, according to a new report. Read more

Painting of St. Stephen’s martyrdom.

St. Stephen: Visiting the spot where the first martyr died

Dec 26, 2023

By Jonah McKeown

A chapel of one form or another memorializing Stephen’s martyrdom has existed at the site since at least the fifth... Read more

Brother Godwin Eze.

‘I am prepared to die a martyr’: Freed Nigerian monk recounts kidnapping, murder of brother monk

Nov 30, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

Brother Peter Olarewaju recounts the horrific kidnapping and torture he and other monks suffered, including the murder of a brother... Read more

Pope Francis at the Sunday, Nov. 19, 2023, Angelus and martyrs beatified in Seville on Nov. 18, 2023.

Pope Francis calls for applause for 20 martyrs of Spanish Civil War beatified in Seville

Nov 20, 2023

By Walter Sanchez Silva

At Sunday’s Angelus, Pope Francis called for applause for the 20 martyrs beatified in the Seville cathedral on Nov. 18. Read more

"Martyrdom of Josaphat Kuntsevych" (c. 1861) by Józef Simmler.

Ukrainian Greek Catholics observe 400th anniversary of St. Josaphat Kuncewycz’s martyrdom

Nov 17, 2023

By Matthew Santucci

The 17th-century saint is called the “Apostle of Unity” because of his efforts to heal the divide between the churches... Read more

The project of the sanctuary of the holy martyrs of the Cristera War in Mexico is expected to be completed in 2026.

Mexican diocese building new shrine to martyrs of Cristero War

Oct 18, 2023

By Diego López Colín

The Archdiocese of Durango in Mexico has begun the construction of a shrine dedicated to the martyrs who offered their... Read more

A new statue of St. Andrew Kim Tae-gŏn, a Korean martyr, was unveiled at St. Peter's Basilica on Sept. 16, 2023.

Who are the Korean martyrs?

Sep 20, 2023

By Kevin J. Jones

On Sept. 20, the Catholic Church remembers the many men, women, and children who died for their faith in Korea. Read more

Pope Francis at the general audience in St. Peter's Square on June 28, 2023.

Vatican to collect stories of Christian martyrs killed since 2000

Jul 5, 2023

By Hannah Brockhaus

“To all of them we owe a great debt and cannot forget them,” Pope Francis said. Read more

Pope Francis receives relics of the Coptic martyrs from Pope Tawadros II, the head of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, May 11, 2023. Pope Francis also announced that the 21 men will be added to the Church’s official list of saints.

Pope Francis adds Coptic Orthodox martyrs to liturgical book of saints

May 11, 2023

By Hannah Brockhaus

After receiving relics of the Coptic martyrs beheaded by ISIS, Pope Francis announced the 21 men will be added to... Read more

The faces of 140 Spanish priests and laity killed during the religious persecution in Spain in the 20th century.

Another 140 Spanish laymen, priests martyred for their faith considered for beatification

Dec 16, 2022

By CNA Staff

The diocesan phase of the beatification processes of 140 priests and laymen murdered in Spain during the religious persecution of... Read more

Pope Francis, pictured in St. Peter's Square Oct. 14, 2017.

Pope Francis: Conscientious objector Bl. Franz Jägerstätter an example for youth

Jul 11, 2022

By Hannah Brockhaus

Pope Francis on Monday invited young people to learn the story of Bl. Franz Jägerstätter, a conscientious objector who was... Read more

The 10 Elizabethan sisters beatified on June 11, 2022, in Wrocław, Poland.

Meet the 10 newest blesseds of the Catholic Church

Jun 18, 2022

By CNA Staff

The 10 Elizabethan sisters were murdered by Red Army soldiers in 1945. Read more

Sister Paschalis Jahn and nine fellow Elizabethan sisters martyred during World War II were beatified June 11, 2022, in Wroclaw, Poland.

Pope Francis praises 'example of faith' of newly beatified Polish nuns martyred in WWII

Jun 12, 2022

By CNA Staff

Sister Paschalis Jahn and nine fellow Elizabethan sisters were beatified Saturday in Wroclaw, Poland. Read more

The beatification of Father Leonard Melki and Father Thomas Saleh in Jal el Dib, Lebanon, on June 4, 2022.

Catholic priests martyred under Ottoman Empire beatified in Lebanon

Jun 6, 2022

By Courtney Mares

Father Leonard Melki and Father Thomas Saleh were martyred in 1915 and 1917 respectively. Read more

Titus Brandsma as rector magnificus of the Catholic University of Nijmegen in 1932.

Who was Titus Brandsma?

Mar 8, 2022

By Luke Coppen

Pope Francis will canonize the World War II martyr in May. Read more