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St. Jose Thi Dang Le

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Birth: 1825
Death: 1860

Jose Thi Dang Le, of Ke Van, Vietnam, attained the rank of a captain in the army of the Vietnamese emperor, Tu Duc. As a Catholic, Jose stood in great danger from the ongoing persecution of Christians promulgated by the emperor. This situation prompted Jose to resign from the military in August of 1859. On January 17, 1860, the emperor issued a further decree against Catholics, condemning Christianity for "luring people into illusion and ignorance." Twelve days later, Jose was arrested with other Catholic soldiers, whom he encouraged to persevere as they faced imprisonment and torture. Shortly before going to his execution on October 24, Jose was able to receive the last sacraments. Moreover, upon arriving at the execution site, he was given absolution by a priest hiding amid the crowd of spectators. After praying at length on his knees, Jose suffered death by strangulation. A robber whom Jose had converted to the Catholic faith while the two were in prison together was executed with him.


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