Our patron, St. Kizito Saint Kizito (1872 – June 3, 1886) was a Ugandan child martyr. He was 14 years old when he died for his beliefs. He, and eleven others, were wrapped in reed mats and laid on a furnace bonfire where they were burned alive because they would not renounce their Christian faith or follow any action deemed contrary to Church teachings. This angered Mwanga, king of Buganda (Uganda), who became determined to deal harshly with all Christian followers in his kingdom.
Mwanga came to power at the age of 16 and demanded that Christians renounce their faith on pain of torture or death. He also demanded that his servants perform sexual favours for him. Kizito and his peers refused to comply and were sentenced to death. Kizito was very scared.
There was another young man with him, Charles Lwanga, who told him he would hold his hand when the fire was lit so that together they would go to heaven. Kizito’s final words were, “Goodbye, friends, we are on our way”.
The Martyrs of Uganda inspired many others to become Christian. Kizito was beatified in 1920 by Pope Benedict XV and canonised on October 18, 1964 by Pope Paul VI. He is the patron saint of children and primary schools. He is the youngest African saint and martyr, and his feast day is June 3.
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