Tuesday, April 29, 2008

About truth

Do you know about St. Maximilian Maria Kolbe? Here's part of his story:
On February 17, 1941 he was arrested by the German Gestapo and imprisoned in the Pawiak prison, and on May 25 was transferred to Auschwitz I as prisoner #16670.

In July 1941 a man from Kolbe's barracks vanished, prompting SS-Hauptsturmf├╝hrer Karl Fritzsch, the deputy camp commander, to pick 10 men from the same barracks to be starved to death in Block 13 (notorious for torture), in order to deter further escape attempts. (The man who had disappeared was later found drowned in the camp latrine.) One of the selected men, Franciszek Gajowniczek, cried out, lamenting his family, and Kolbe volunteered to take his place.

During the time in the cell he led the men in songs and prayer. After three weeks of dehydration and starvation, only Kolbe and three others were still alive. Finally he was murdered with an injection of carbolic acid.
Here's something he said that I found very insightful and challenging:
No one in the world can alter truth. All we can do is seek it and live it.
It strikes me that many (if not most) of the conflicts of the world are due to people trying to alter truth. What would happen if we chose to live it instead?


  1. I like that quote and believe it to be true. Thanks for the info about this good man.

  2. I've never heard about Kolbe. It's an inspiring story.


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