Saint Stanislaus Kostka – biography

"To the higher things I am created"

Saint Stanislaus Kostka was born in Rostkowo near Przasnysz, Poland in October 1550 as the son of Jan Kostka, the senator of the Kingdom of Poland and the Lord of Zakroczym. His mother, Margaret, was the sister and niece of the Duke Palatin of Masovia and the aunt of the celebrated Chancellor of Poland, Felix Kryski. Stanislaus the son of a noble family was brought at home where the main feature of the early education were firmness, severity, training and respect for the others.

As a 14-year-old boy he was sent with his elder brother Paul to Vienna to Jesuit College. The modest boy was devoted to education and religious favour. Stanislaus spent in there three years thinking about joining the Society of Jesus despite the fact that his parents were strongly against such a decision. The young man respected and admired his parents but finally he decided to escape from Vienna and head for Rome to fulfil his strong need.

He arrived in Rome exhausted which resulted in illness, high fever and extreme weakness. Without no obstacles was Stanislaus accepted to novitiate of Saint Andrew and during his remaining months of his life he became a model and mirror of religious perfection. He clearly knew that his health condition is getting worse and his last hour had come so he wrote a letter to the Blessed Virgin begging her to call him to the skies there to celebrate with her glorious anniversary of her Assumption. Stanislaus’s prayer was heard out. He died on 15th August 1568.

His beatification took place in 1605 and canonization on 31st December 1726. Saint Stanislaus became one of the most popular saints in Poland and patron saint of the young Catholics. He is also often chosen as the protector of religious institutions, novitiates and schools.