St. Stanislaus was the tragic hero of a life spent working against corruption in government. An eastern European saint, he was made the Bishop of Kraków, Poland in 1072. During a series of immoral acts and unjust wars waged by King Boleslaus II, Stanislaus found himself speaking out against the King’s behavior and encouraged him to repent.
Like Saints Thomas More and Thomas Becket, he became a martyr as he followed the example of Christ by preaching repentance and adherence to a just and moral way of life. Boleslaus continued with his corrupt ways and St. Stanislaus excommunicated the regent. Enraged, Boleslaus ordered his soldiers to execute the saintly bishop. When they refused, the King was forced to complete the bloody task himself.
Because St. Stanislaus stood firm against a corrupt Polish king, he is the Patron Saint of Poland and of Polish people everywhere. He carries the Bishop’s staff and his Saint’s Day is celebrated on April 11.