My confirmation Saint is the little known Paul Miki. He was a Jesuit in Japan who, along with his companions was martyred by crucifixion. My fascination with Paul Miki began when I was a child and we would read from the Lives of the Saints at the dinner table every night.
Several years later, when it came time for me to pick a confirmation saint I picked St. Paul Miki.
Now, as my faith has matured I have an even greater fascination with this great saint. At the time of his murder, Christianity was outlawed in the Japan. More than two hundred years later when Missionaries were allowed back into the country, they found people who still professed faith in Jesus Christ. For two hundred years they maintained this faith without the sacraments! What a strong faith St. Paul Miki and his companions must have instilled in these Japanese men and women.
The reason I bring this up is because his feast day is this Saturday, February 6th. Here are St. Paul Miki’s last words, delivered as he was being crucified for his faith.
The only reason for my being killed is that I have taught the doctrine of Christ. I thank God it is for this reason that I die. I believe that I am telling the truth before I die. I know you believe me and I want to say to you all once again: Ask Christ to help you become happy. I obey Christ. After Christ’s example, I forgive my persecutors. I do not hate them. I ask God to have pity on all, and I hope my blood will fall on my fellow men as a fruitful rain.
Saint Paul Miki, pray for us.