The 26 Martyrs of Japan 6 February

img-martyrs-of-nagasaki

Also known as

  • Nagasaki Martyrs
  • Saint Paul Miki and Companions
  • Saint Peter Baptist and Companions

Memorial

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Twenty-six Franciscan and Jesuit missionaries and Japanese converts crucifiedtogether by order of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.

Following their arrests, they were taken to the public square of Meako to the city’s principal temple. They each had a piece of their left ear cut off, and then paraded from city to city for weeks with a man shouting their crimes and encouraging their abuse. The priests and brothers were accused of preaching the outlawed faith of Christianity, the lay people of supporting and aiding them. They were each repeatedly offered freedom if they would renounce Christianity. They each declined.

 

The Martyrs are

Died

  • crucified on 5 February1597 at Tateyama (Hill of Wheat), Nagasaki, Japan
  • the Japanese style of crucifixion was to put iron clamps around the wrists, ankles and throat, a straddle piece was placed between the legs for weight support, and the person was pierced with a lance up through the left and right ribs toward the opposite shoulder

Beatified

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The Nagasaki Martyrs  by Jay Copp

Some 200 bishops and priests followed the cross-bearer and the servers carrying 26 candles into the sports stadium. On this day, Feb. 5, 1997, there would be no games played here. On this day, the Church, and a nation, paused to remember 26 martyrs killed in Nagasaki four centuries before.[ ]

Source: The Nagasaki Martyrs