Today we celebrate Blessed Franz Jägerstätter who refused to serve in the German Wehrmacht. He was convinced that as a devout Catholic he could not engage in active military service. His was one of the most prominent acts of resistance by an ordinary Austrian during World War II. In addition, Jägerstätter denounced Wehrmacht war crimes on the Eastern front, long before anyone publicly dared any critique of what became known as the Holocaust. Franz Jägerstätter was imprisoned and beheaded by the Nazis on this day in 1943. He is the patron saint of conscientious objectors.
On a recent Sunday afternoon, we watched Terrence Malick's very moving film about Franz Jägerstätter.