Thursday, April 28, 2016

April 28: Saint Peter Chanel

St. Peter Chanel


Peter was a French priest who went to the South Pacific on a missionary journey. Peter visited the island of Futuna with two laymen. King Niuliki was happy to meet them – at first. But once the missionaries learned the local language and started to teach people about Jesus, the king felt his position as high priest in their pagan religion was being compromised. When the prince decided to become a Christian, that was the last straw. King Niuliki had the missionaries killed. But that didn’t end Christianity on that island. Within months, almost everybody was a Christian, including the man who killed Peter Chanel. 


Christians on the island of Futuna were very sorry that Saint Peter Chanel had been martyred. They created a special song and dance as a prayer of penitence. It’s called the eke, and it is still performed today. Watch this video to see it and think about how God was able to use Saint Peter Chanel to spread the Gospel even after he was killed.

Saint Peter Chanel, pray for us!

More reading for parents:

Catholic Encyclopedia