28 Jan: St. Joseph Freinademetz, priest, missionary

Joseph FreinademetzBe sure to check this story at The Catholic Herald in their “Saint of the Week” feature.

This week they focus on Joseph Freinademetz, priest, whose feast is today, 28 January.

Fr. Freinademetz was a missionary to China who embraced the people and culture.  He would come to say:

I would die for them a thousand times over.

Born in the Italian Dolomites he died in China of typhus in 1907.  He said: “I want to be Chinese in heaven.”

Joseph Freinademetz was canonized in 2003.

You might invoke his intercession today for our brothers and sisters, Catholics, in China.

There is a longer story about this saint over at the Catholic Herald.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Saints: Stories & Symbols and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Katherine says:

    Was he a Jesuit invovled in the ‘Chinese rites’ controversy?

  2. Jack Hughes says:

    No he was a SVD (Society of Divine Word) Priest

  3. Vox clamantis in deserto says:

    Btw, St. Joseph Freinademetz is the patron saint of the University Pastoral Center in Bratislava, Slovakia…run by SVD priests, of course. :-) A large picture of the saint (almost the same as in Father Z’s post) hangs on a wall there. And, surely also because of St. Joseph’s prayers, from time to time some ‘non-theology’ students enter SVD after they finished their studies, become priests and go to eastern missions…although not to China so far, mainly to Russia.

  4. The Chinese Rites Controversy was from the 1630’s up until the early 1700’s, way before the American Revolution. So St. Joseph Freinademetz is a bit less than 200 years later.

  5. Gaz says:

    Reminds me of Bl Maria Assunta Pallotta.

  6. J Kusske says:

    Thank you Fr. for another enlightening post! In looking up his story, I am interested to see that there is a German-speaking Catholic congregation here in Beijing named in his honor (he was a Tyrolian). He may be a Chinese in Heaven, but I’m sure he’s very happy about it. Now I want to know what there is in Shandong where his mission area was!

Comments are closed.