You may know his name from Christmas carols and may wear a quality Saint Wenceslaus medal necklace, but you may not know the heroic story of this king's martyrdom.
Wenceslaus, like many people, sadly endured unrest in his family. His Christian father died when Wenceslaus was young, and his holy grandmother, St. Ludmilla, raised him and formed him in the Faith. At the urging of his grandmother, he seized power, which resulted in splitting the kingdom in half: one half Catholic, and one-half pagan (ruled by his Catholic-hating pagan mother). Wenceslaus dedicated his duchy to the Lord, reinstituted the Latin Mass, and lived a celibate and virtuous life. The Holy Roman Emperor, Otto I, bestowed on Wenceslaus many relics and first named him "King Wenceslaus." His brother and mother feigned a desire to meet and make peace, but it was a set-up to murder Wenceslaus. His brother slayed him with a lance while King Wenceslaus was praying in the chapel. His mother also arranged the murder of St. Ludmilla. The murderous brother eventually came to regret and repent of the murder.
The feast day of St. Wenceslaus is September 28, and he is the patron saint of Bohemia and the Czech Republic.
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