Above: U.S. Soldiers at Dachau Concentration Camp, April 29, 1945
Image in the Public Domain
BLESSED GIUSEPPE GIROTTI (JULY 19, 1905-APRIL 1, 1945)
Roman Catholic Priest and Martyr
Everything I do is for charity.
–Blessed Giuseppe Girotti, explaining why he helped Jews illegally
Here slept Saint Giuseppe Girotti.
–Carved into the empty bed of Girotti at Dachau Concentration Camp after his execution
Giuseppe Girotti was one of the Righteous Gentiles. He, born at Alba, Cuneo, Italy, on July 19, 1905, joined the Order of Preachers (the Dominicans) in 1923. He, ordained a priest in 1930, studied under Marie-Joseph Lagrange at the Ecole Biblique, Jerusalem. Girotti, a professor of theology at the Dominican theological seminary at Turin, Italy, wrote an analysis of the Book of Isaiah. Of particular interest to him was the Suffering Servant. Girotti, who respected the Jewish people, referred to them as “elder brothers” and “carriers of the word.” In 1943, when Italian Jews became vulnerable to the Holocaust, our saint began to hide some of them and to help others escape to safety. For this he became a suffering servant. Nazi authorities arrested him on August 19, 1944. He died at Dachau on April 1, 1945, shortly before the liberation of that concentration camp. Our saint was 39 years old.
Pope Francis declared Girotti a Venerable in 2013 and a Blessed the following year.
Girotti took up his cross and followed Christ until he received the crown of martyrdom.
KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR
FEBRUARY 12, 2017 COMMON ERA
THE SIXTH SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY, YEAR A
THE FEAST OF ABSALOM JONES, RICHARD ALLEN, AND JARENA LEE, EVANGELISTS AND SOCIAL ACTIVISTS
THE FEAST OF CHARLES FREER ANDREWS, ANGLICAN PRIEST
THE FEAST OF CHRISTOPH CARL LUDWIG VON PFEIL, GERMAN LUTHERAN HYMN WRITER
THE FEAST OF MICHAEL WEISSE, GERMAN MORAVIAN MINISTER AND HYMN WRITER AND TRANSLATOR; AND JAN ROH, BOHEMIAN MORAVIAN BISHOP AND HYMN WRITER
Holy and righteous God, you created us in your image.
Grant us grace to contend fearlessly against evil and to make no peace with oppression.
Help us, like your servant Blessed Giuseppe Girotti,
to work for justice among people and nations, to the glory of your name,
through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
–Adapted from Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 60