St. Augustine Zhao Rong and Companions (17th-20th Centuries)
Holy Martyrs of China. Today 120 men, women, and children are honoured for giving of their lives as witnesses to the Catholic faith. While at times the Christians mission was well received in China, other times it was met with great persecution. Great care needed to be taken in the work of mission to inculturate the Gospel with ancient Chinese culture. However, Christianity was still feared at times as a form of Western colonialism. So many lost their lives for adhering to their faith in the Saviour Jesus Christ. Augustine Zhao Rong is one of the 120 who are honoured this day. While serving as a soldier, Augustine accompanied St. Gabriel Taurin Dufresse, M.E.P to his martyrdom. Augustine was so moved by the example of Bishop Defresse, that he sought Baptism for himself. Eventually, Augustine was ordained a priest and suffered martyrdom himself.
O God, who in your wonderful providence have strengthened your Church through the confession of the Martyrs Saint Augustine Zhao and companions, grant that your people, faithful to the mission entrusted to it, may enjoy ever greater freedom and witness to the truth before the world.