(ANS – Vatican City) The Supreme Pontiff, Pope Francis, has granted that the celebration of the rite of beatification of the Servant of God Stephen Sándor, lay professed member of the Society of St Francis de Sales, born at Szolnok (Hungary) on 26 October 1914 and killed in hatred of the Faith in Budapest (Hungary) on 8 June 1953, should take place in the city of Budapest on Saturday 19 October 2013.
The date and place were communicated officially to Fr Pierluigi Cameroni, Postulator General of the Salesian Family, by Mons. Angelo Becciu, Substitute Secretary of State. The Holy Father will be represented by Cardinal Angelo Amato, SDB, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints.
The martyr Stephen Sándor, a Salesian Brother, was sent by the Holy Spirit to the young to bear witness to the Gospel according to the spirit of Don Bosco. He remained with them and kept guard over them even to the point of giving his life. He offered his life for the salvation of the young people of Hungary and in defence of the rights of the Church.
“We thank God for this special gift to the Church and to the Salesian Family in this Year of Faith as we prepare for the bicentenary of the birth of Don Bosco” said Fr Cameroni, as soon as he heard the news. “This event is a moment of joy especially for the Salesian Congregation in Hungary which this year celebrates 100 years of Salesian presence in the country. We receive this news also as a gift of Mary Help of Christians as we begin the Novena in her honour. Stephen Sándor had great devotion to the Mother of God and he spread this devotion among the young with great enthusiasm and fervour.”