St. Josaphat was born in Poland in 1580 to noble parents.  He became the first great leader of the Ruthenian Catholics (or Uniates).  The former schismatics had returned to the Church through the treaty of Brest-Litovsk in 1595.  He entered the Order of St. Basil at 20 years of age and reformed it, giving it a more active character.  He was recommended to the Pope by his own people to rule over them as Archbishop of Polotsk in 1617 because of his wisdom and knowledge.  He worked intensively for the conversion of schismatics and the reform of his own clergy who were ignorant and venal.  He established the ascendancy of the Uniate Church through his boundless charity and powerful preaching.  Because of this, he was slain by the Orthodox fanatics in 1623 at Vitebak.

FEAST DAY:  November 12

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