The Drew Mariani Show – St. Maximilian Kolbe and Stories of Mercy at Auschwitz

Do you love St. Maximilian Kolbe? Do you have a special devotion to him or feel a closeness to him? He’s a great example of heroic virtue which can give you the strength to accept any suffering that comes your way.

Drew Mariani shares his story; he is the patron saint of drug addicts and journalists. St. Maximilian Kolbe was born as Raymond Colby in 1894 and had a transformative experience after his mother’s question about his future led him to a vision of the Virgin Mary, who presented him with two crowns symbolizing purity and martyrdom. He chose both paths and became a Franciscan Friar with a mission of evangelization.

St. Maximilian Kolbe founded radio stations, magazines, and the Militia Immaculata to counteract groups like Freemasonry and promote devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Despite battling sickness, he achieved significant accomplishments, including publishing magazines and newspapers, establishing a large monastery, and expanding his mission to Japan.

Drew highlights Kolbe’s sacrificial act in Auschwitz, where he offered his life to take the place of another prisoner condemned to die of starvation. He and his fellow inmates prayed and sang hymns in the starvation bunker, providing an inspiring example of faith in the face of unimaginable suffering. Eventually, Kolbe was killed with carbolic acid and his ashes scattered in the Auschwitz ovens.

Drew also touches on Rudolf Haas, a notorious commandant at Auschwitz responsible for the deaths of millions. After World War II, Haas experienced a profound conversion while in prison due to the mercy and love shown to him by Polish guards and a Jesuit priest. He was absolved of his sins and received the sacraments before his execution, highlighting the transformative power of mercy and forgiveness.

Don’t ever despair and that you are too far gone from God’s mercy. No matter how much you have strayed, you can be assured that Jesus will always bring you back.

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Jake Moore serves as a Digital Audio Content Producer for Relevant Radio®. He is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, and is passionate about classic movies, Christian music, young adult ministry, and leading this generation to Christ through compelling media. You can listen to more of his podcasts at and on the Relevant Radio® app.