Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila (1600-1637)
Lorenzo Ruiz and Anti-Christianity in Japan in the 1600s
The followers of Christ, arriving unexpectedly in Japan, not only came here carrying their goods, but also, without any permission, have spread and propagated their wicked law, destroying the good and legitimate one and plotting to overthrow authority in the country. This is the beginning of great calamity, which we should avoid by all means. Japan is a Shintoist and Buddhist country, which venerates the gods, honours Buddha, and respects the ‘way of benevolence’ (Confucius).
The followers of the Fathers (the Christians) have all disobeyed the orders already given by the government despising religion…and destroying the good. They are overjoyed when they see those about to be executed; they run after them wherever they go and adore them … Such is the supreme ideal of this religion. Unless it is suppressed immediately, endless misfortunes will fall on the State. In all the regions of Japan, all these Christians should be eliminated without any delay … If anyone dares contravene this order, he will be put to death …… (Extracts of the 1614 Edict, substantially alike those of 1633, 1636).
Lorenzo Ruiz arrived in Nagasaki on September 21, 1637. At this time, Lorenzo entered Japan still without the slightest intention – as he latter confessed to his judges – of becoming a martyr.
They were arrested and taken to the tribunals of the governors of Nagasaki. During one of Ruiz’ interrogations, a judge asked him a question if he will denounce his faith. The response was categorical and immediate: “That I will never do, because I am a Christian, and I shall die for God, and for Him I will give many thousand lives if I had them. And so do with me as you please.”
More About Lorenzo Ruiz
- WikiPedia: Lorenzo Ruiz
- Chapel of San Lorenzo: San Lorenzo Ruiz
- Blessed Sacrament Parish: San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila
- Catholic Online: St. Lorenzo Ruiz
- San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila: Proto-Martyr
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