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Our Lady of Purgatory

Heroic Forgiveness

In the middle of the 19th century, Archduchess Sophie, mother of the Emperor of Austria, gave a beautiful and sublime example of Christian charity. When this princess was told of the execution of Lebenyi, who, as is well known, had made an attempt on the life of the young and chivalrous Emperor Franz Joseph and had seriously wounded him, she said: “Will anyone in this vast empire think of praying for the soul of this unfortunate man? Well! I want to take upon me this duty that our holy religion prescribes; I forget that it caused me the greatest pain that can reach the heart of a mother worried for the life of her son, and, as a Christian, I resolved to have celebrated, from today, anniversary masses for the soul of this unhappy man.”

(Published by the archduchess in the Journal du peuple)

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