St. Kilian (c. 640 – c. 689), also known as Saint Kilian of Würzburg, was an Irish missionary and martyr who lived in the 7th century. He traveled from Ireland to Franconia, in present-day Germany, to spread the Christian faith. Kilian and his companions faced opposition from the ruling duke, who was married to his own brother’s widow, a violation of Church law. Kilian fearlessly confronted the duke, urging him to end the sinful relationship, but his pleas were ignored. As a result, Kilian and his companions were martyred, beheaded in defense of their faith. Saint Kilian is revered as a patron saint of Franconia and is venerated for his courageous witness and commitment to upholding moral values. His relics are enshrined in the cathedral of Würzburg. The feast day of Saint Kilian is celebrated on July 8th, and he is remembered as a model of fidelity to the Gospel and a patron of the unity of marriage.
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