Five years ago today.

Interrupted while saying Mass at his parish church in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, the 85-year old priest struggled to repel his two 18-year old attackers with his feet. “Go away Satan!”, he repeated.

Fr. Jacques Hamel was murdered, in odium fidei, a martyr to the Faith, his throat slashed by Islamic terrorists.

Five years ago today.

His cause has been opened.

Fr. Jacques Hamel by Neilson Carlin

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    On 7 July, a French weekly, La Vie, published transcriptions of conversations between the terrorist murderers and their Islamic State ‘sponsor’ in Syria prior to the attack. The French journal, La Pointe, reported on this the same day (updated 8 July). Both are accessible online as I write. The English account I read of the La Pointe report says “the pair’s ‘sponsor’ gave instructions on committing their terrorist attack, including: ‘You take a knife, you go to a church, you do some carnage, you slice two or three heads, it’s good.'” [In La Pointe, “Tu prends un couteau, tu vas dans une église, tu fais un carnage, tu tranches deux-trois têtes, c’est bon.”]

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  3. Elizium23 says:

    So there is something unsettling about this image, and it is not what you think. I have a small issue with the glowing halo around his head.

    The Holy Father has seen fit to make this an “off-the-cuff” canonization decree, in much the same way he “excommunicated” the N’drangheta. [No. That’s NOTHING like, at all.] I am sorry; you do not formally decree stuff by talking to reporters about it. [Mind you, while there has yet been no official decree, Fr. Hamel’s cause is open, since 2017. Francis dispensed the 5 year waiting period between death and the opening of the cause. That is not all that unusual, especially in a pretty obvious case like this. BTW… I was not in favor of dispensing the waiting period for John Paul II, because there is simply too much in his complicated life that needed time to investigate.]

    This is in the vein of funerals that we all decry as the homilist canonizes the deceased without fail, every time; I just witnessed a beloved priest’s funeral when he was solemnly declared in Heaven with the Holy Angels, well before the process could begin to even examine his life. [That has NOTHING to do with this.]

    At first I was concerned that this artist was the guy who canonizes anyone who dies, like Fr. Mychal Judge, but this artist appears to be quite orthodox and extremely talented; I do love the style he uses and he seems to be an expert in sacred art. So I have difficulty explaining this lapse. [Say what you will about other aspects of Fr. Judge’s life, he went to the Twin Towers in placed himself in extreme danger so as to be able to give Last Rites. He was killed because of his choice, which falls under the rubric for causes of “oblatio vitae”.]

    I do not know if the Church formally condemns or even frowns on artists placing halos on the non-canonized, but it seems to me to put the cart before the horse. Our Church has come a long way since “popular acclamation” was the only way to venerate saints; we have a process in place for such things, and there are more-or-less mandatory waiting periods. Five years is not long enough to examine this man’s life in toto. [Two things here. Yes, there is a prohibition of halos on those who are not at least beatified when the image is a place such as a church and offered for public veneration. That is a very bad thing for a cause, as a matter of fact, and it is forbidden. That is not the case with this image, however. Were it in a church for public veneration, that would be bad. Second, “popular acclamation” is still, in other terms, a necessary part of a cause. There ought to be fama sanctitatis or fama martyrii. The “cult” that people have for a Servant of God must also grow organically amongst people. That is an important element in a cause.]

    I understand that a declaration of martyrdom can waive most of the other requirements for canonization, such as verified miracles, and acts of heroic virtue. [You do not seem to understand the term “heroic virtue”, but it is true that a life of heroic virtue does not need to be demonstrated in cases of true martyrdom from odium fidei.] But I simply do not think that the Holy Father’s spontaneous, emotional, off-the-cuff public comments amount to a formal decree. [Nor have they been claimed to be. There is a cause in progress. His remarks did not start the cause and they did not stop the cause. The cause goes forward by its proper procedure once it has begun.]

  4. Semper Gumby says:

    Islamism remains a problem, and terror is sometimes a “family business.”

    PARIS: Notre Dame Terror Suspect Engaged To Murderer of Fr. Hamel

  5. Semper Gumby says:

    The Battle of Jaffa began on July 27, 1192 when Saladin (who had crushed a Crusader army at nearby Hattin in July 1187) surrounded the port of Jaffa with an army of 20,000. Raymond Ibrahim describes this battle in “Sword and Scimitar.”

    The Jaffa garrison dispatched a messenger to Richard the Lionhearted who was in nearby Acre preparing to leave for England. King Richard and 2,000 knights and footmen sailed for Jaffa and arrived the night of July 31.

    By then Jaffa’s walls had been breached, the garrison driven into the Citadel, and the beach, once Saladin noticed the Crusader ships, occupied by Muslim archers and javelin troops to oppose a Crusader boat landing.

    At dawn a priest in the Citadel dove into the sea, swam to King Richard’s ship and delivered a grim battle report. The King replied, “If it so please God, we should die here with our brothers.”

    King Richard put on light armor, picked up a battle axe and a crossbow and, according to a chronicler, shouted “death only to those who do not advance” as he jumped into the water followed by his two thousand. Richard “forced himself powerfully on to dry land” and he and his men proceeded to hack their way through the Muslim army aiming directly for Saladin, who soon turned and fled. “The king and his fellow-knights steadfastly pursued him, continually slaying and unhorsing…for more than two miles.” Deus Vult.

  6. Semper Gumby says:

    In France since Fr. Hamel’s murder (the Nice truck attack was earlier that month) there have been other attacks such as the beheading of Samuel Paty, the murder of Sarah Halimi, a series of Islamist attacks in October 2020 (including at Notre-Dame de Nice), and an increase in sexual assaults by Islamists. Construction of mosques and mega-mosques has increased. Attacks on police precincts and ambushes of police have increased (“kill them all” incidents). In April a group of active-duty and retired military personnel issued a public warning letter to Pres. Macron over Islamism, cultural Marxism and the expansion of no-go zones.

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