BUDAPEST, Hungary, September 17, 2006
Sister Sara Salkahazi, a nun shot to death for sheltering Jews in Hungary during World War II, was beatified in Budapest on
September 17, 2006.
The beatification was conducted by Cardinal Peter Erdo, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest and president of the Hungarian Episcopal conference. The ceremony took place at St. Stephen's Basilica.
In April, Benedict XVI signed a decree on Sister Salkahazi's martyrdom, a document paving the way for her beatification.
A member of the Sisters of Social Service, a charity organization helping the poor, the woman religious was a journalist, a writer and a cultural activist. She helped to shelter hundreds of Jews, including many women and children, in a convent in the final months of the war.
She was reported to the authorities, and henchmen of the ruling fascist Arrow Cross Party drove her and the people she had sheltered to the banks of the Danube River and shot them on Dec. 27, 1944.
The Sisters of Social Service saved more than 1,000 lives during the war.
Cardinal Erdo, the primate of Hungary, said in reaction to the Pope's decision: "I believe that in the year of the nation's spiritual renewal, the Holy Father could not give a more beautiful gift to the Church, and also to the whole of Hungarian society." (for more information see Cardinal Peter Erdo's Interview before the beatification and excerpts of his homily at the beatification).
Sister Sara website
Photos taken at the Beatification in Hungary