Memorial of Saint Maximilian Kolbe

Scripture Readings: Ez 2:8-3:4;  Mt 18:1-5, 10, 12-14                               

“Greater love no one has than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (Jn 15:13).  St. Maximillian Kolbe, who took the place of a fellow prisoner condemned to die by starvation at Auschwitz, had such love.  We might never be called to follow his example of heroic love, but we can follow his example and teaching on humility. 

St. Maximillian Kolbe taught that even our sins can help us grow in holiness. He writes, “My beloved, may every fall, even if it is serious and habitual sin, become a step toward holiness.  One reason we’re permitted to fall is to cure us of our pride, and help us to be more docile to divine grace.  The devil tries to infect us with discouragement and depression when we have sinned, which is nothing else than our pride surfacing again.  Do not be surprised by your sinfulness, but thank God for not allowing you to fall even deeper and more frequently.” 1  He continues, “You can taste a little bit of heaven by confessing your sins with sincerity and humility.  You will feel a peace and happiness compared with which the fleeting, unworthy pleasures of this world are really just odious torments.” 2

1.  St. Maximillian Kolbe, “Let Yourself Be Led by the Immaculate,” Angelus Press, 2013.