June 19 – St. François-Isidore Gagelin

June 18, 2018

Saint François-Isidore Gagelin (10 May 1799 – 17 October 1833) was a French missionary of the Paris Foreign Missions Society in Vietnam.

1860 painting of St. François-Isidore Gagelin. Photo taken by PHGCOM

1860 painting of St. François-Isidore Gagelin. Photo taken by PHGCOM

He became the first French martyr of the 19th century in Vietnam. He was born in Montperreux, Doubs. He left for Vietnam in 1821. In 1826, when Emperor Minh Mạng ordered all missionaries to gather at the capital Huế, he fled to the south to Đồng Nai in Cochinchina. He was captured once and released.

On 6 January 1833, a new edict of prohibition was promulgated by Minh Mạng and immediately put in application. Churches were destroyed, and missionaries had to live in hiding. Gagelin surrendered in August 1833, and he was brought to Huế. He was killed by strangulation on 17 October 1833.

He was beatified in 1900, and canonized in 1988.

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