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Bl. Franciscan Martyrs of China

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Feastday: June 5
Death: 1900

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Twenty-nine Franciscans and Franciscan tertiaries who became victims of the Boxer Rebellion. They represent more than 100,000 Christians of China who were martyred in the reign of Empress Tz'u hsi. These martyrs are recorded as being slain in the palace of the viceroy of Taiyuan-fu of Xian-fu Province. The martyrs are: Bishop Gregory Grassie, Bishop Francis Fognolla, Father Elias Facchini, Father Theodore Balat, Father Franco Benedictine hermit. He was born in Castel Regni, in Abruzzi, Italy. Entering the Benedictine monastery at Colimento, he lived as a herĀ­mit there for twenty years. He spent the last decade and a half of his life at Asserigo.

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