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Chinese Martyrs

Saint Augustine Zhao Rong and Companions are a group of Chinese martyrs. They lived and died for their Catholic faith in China. This group includes both Chinese and foreign missionaries. They died between 1648 and 1930.

Many were killed during the Boxer Rebellion from 1899 to 1901. This uprising led to much violence against foreign and Christian influences in China. They are honored together because of their shared witness to Christ.

Augustine Zhao Rong was a Chinese soldier. He guarded a Catholic bishop who was a prisoner. Augustine was moved by the bishop’s faith and became a Catholic. He later became a priest. During a time of persecution, he was arrested and killed for his faith.

Along with Saint Augustine, there were many other martyrs. This is a very diverse group of martyrs. They include men, women, and children. The martyrs were clergy, members of religious orders, and laypeople. Some were native Chinese, and others were missionaries. They sought to spread the Catholic faith in China despite the risks.

These martyrs are an example of courage and faith. They show us the strength of believing in Jesus. Pope John Paul II canonized them in the year 2000. They remind us of the cost of following Jesus and the hope of eternal life.

Their feast day is July 9. This day is set aside to remember their sacrifice. It is a time to honor their courage and faith. We are reminded of the strength needed to follow Christ. These martyrs inspire us to stay true to our faith no matter the cost.

Lasting Light of Faith

The legacy of the Chinese Martyrs lives on today. They showed great courage in the face of danger. Their faith did not waver, even when faced with death. This strong faith inspires Catholics around the world.

Their story is a reminder of the cost of following Jesus. The Chinese Martyrs gave up their lives for their faith. This shows us the importance of standing firm in our beliefs. It encourages us to be brave and faithful in our own lives.

The Chinese Martyrs also highlight the spread of Christianity. Despite persecution, the faith grew in China. Their sacrifices helped to plant the seeds of faith. Today, many Chinese Catholics honor these martyrs and their legacy.

Their feast day on July 9 is a time of remembrance. Catholics everywhere celebrate their courage and faith. It is a day to thank God for their witness. The legacy of the Chinese Martyrs continues to inspire and guide us.

Patron Saint of …

The Chinese Martyrs are the patron saints of China.

Daily Mass Readings for the Optional Memorial of Saint Augustine Zhao Rong, Priest, and Companions, Martyrs

The readings may be taken from those below, the Mass of the day, or from the Common of Martyrs.

  • First Reading1 John 5:1-5: Believing in Jesus makes us children of God. We show love for God’s children by obeying His commands. Our faith in Jesus conquers the world.
  • Responsorial PsalmPsalm 126: When the LORD restored Zion’s captives, they rejoiced. God has done great things. Those who sow in tears will return with joy, bringing in the harvest.
  • Gospel John 12:24-26: Jesus teaches that a grain must die to produce fruit, and those who prioritize eternal life over worldly life will be honored by the Father.


Diaries of the Chinese Martyrs: This book tells the stories of brave Catholic martyrs in China. These four autobiographical testimonies share the experiences of Gaetano Pollio, Dominic Tang, SJ, John Liao Shouji, and Leon Chan. Despite severe persecution under Mao’s dictatorship, their faith remained strong. Their stories inspire with their courage and hope.

Social Media Graphics

going to heaven today
On July 14th, Yuxian, the Governor of Shanxi Province, issued an order: All male Christians who are not willing to deny their faith must gather near the North Gate. When the Catholics heard this order they became very excited, and their hearts were filled with joy. They all began marching towards the appointed place. On the way they supported and encouraged one another. My grandfather was one of these fervent Catholics. As soon as he heard the order, he said to my fifteen-year-old father and my uncle, Let’s go. We are going to heaven today! – Fr. Francis Li, grandson of a Chinese martyr

Questions and Answers about the Chinese Martyrs

Who are the Chinese Martyrs?

The Chinese Martyrs are 120 Catholics who died for their faith in China.

When did the Chinese Martyrs live and die?

They lived and died between 1648 and 1930.

How many Chinese Martyrs were there?

There were 120 Chinese Martyrs.

When were the Chinese Martyrs canonized?

Pope John Paul II canonized them in 2000.

What is the feast day of the Chinese Martyrs?

Their feast day is July 9.

What types of people are among the Chinese Martyrs?

The group includes men, women, children, clergy, members of religious orders, and laypeople.

Did the Chinese Martyrs include only native Chinese?

No, the group included both native Chinese and foreign missionaries.

Why were the Chinese Martyrs killed?

They were killed for their Catholic faith, especially during times of persecution.

Did the Chinese Martyrs die only during the Boxer Rebellion?

No, they died between 1648 and 1930, but many were killed during the Boxer Rebellion from 1899 to 1901.

Why are the Chinese Martyrs important?

They show great courage and faith. Their story inspires Catholics around the world.

What are the Mass readings for it?

First Reading – 1 John 5:1-5: Faith and Love
Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 126: Sowing and Reaping Joy
Gospel – John 12:24-26: The Grain of Wheat


The Chinese Martyrs are a group of 120 Catholics who were killed for their faith in China. They lived between 1648 and 1930. These martyrs were canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2000. Their feast day is celebrated on July 9.

This group includes men, women, and children. Some were native Chinese, and others were foreign missionaries. They were priests, laypeople, and members of religious orders. Many were killed during the Boxer Rebellion from 1899 to 1901. This was a time of great violence against Christians in China.

The Chinese Martyrs showed great courage. They chose to die rather than give up their faith. Their story reminds us of the cost of following Jesus. They inspire Catholics around the world to stay strong in their beliefs.

On their feast day, we remember their sacrifices. We honor their bravery and their dedication to spreading the faith. Their legacy continues to encourage and guide us today.

Your Turn

Learn more about the Chinese Martyrs. Their stories are inspiring and show great courage. Take some time to read about their lives and their sacrifices. Reflect on their faith and bravery.

Share your thoughts in the comments below. How do their stories inspire you? What can we learn from their example? Let’s discuss and support each other in our faith journey.

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