St Josaphat

  • Celebrated on

Archbishop. Born in 1584 in Wolodimir in Poland, he became a monk of the Byzantine rite when he was about 20. Ten years later he was made abbot of Vilnius. Josaphat devoted his life to promoting unity between the Orthodox and Catholic churches. In 1618 he was made archbishop of Polatsk in Bielarus, and continued to defend the Byzantine rite Catholics against the Roman rite Polish clergy. When Russia set up a rival Orthodox hierarchy in 1623, he was murdered by a mob of Cossacks at Vitebsk. He was the first Eastern-rite Catholic to be formally canonised in 1867. The Latin rite recognised him in 1882.

Share this saint