Our Saints & Blesseds

Methodius Dominik Trcka

posted on 02/09/10 12:19 am by Fr. Santo Arrigo C.Ss.R.  

Methodius Dominik Trcka was born on 6 June 1886 at Frydlant nad Ostravici (now in the Czech Republic). He was the youngest of seven children. His parents, Frantiska (Frances) Sterbova and Tomas (Thomas) Trcka, had him baptised the following day. After his elementary education in Frydlant, he attended the secondary school at Mistek and later another school at Cervenka, near the Redemptorist college. Drawn to religious life, he entered the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer in 1902, taking his vows on 25 August 1904, after his novitiate year. When his years of study were over he was ordained priest, in Prague, on July 10th, 1910, by Archbishop Leo Skrbensky.

He spent the first years of his priesthood based in Prague, near the Marian shrine of Svata Hora and at Plezn, engaged in popular missions. In 1919 he was ordered to work among the Greek-Catholics in the Halic zone of Galizia, and subsequently in Slovakia , in the eparchy of Prsov, where he engaged in intense missionary activity. In March 1935 the Congregation for the Eastern Churches nominated him apostolic visitor for the Basilian Sisters in Presov and Uzhorod. With the establishment of the Redemptorist Greek-Catholic Vice-province of Michalovce, Fr. Trcka was nominated vice-Provincial (23 March 1946). He immediately undertook the foundation of new religious houses and the formation of young Redemptorists. The Vice-province was suppressed in 1949 and, during the night of April 13, 1950, all the religious were taken to concentration camps. Fr. Methodius, who at that time was living in Sabinov, was transferred to Podolinec and then taken to the famous “Leopoldov Mill.” After a summary trial, on 21” April 1952, he was condemned to twelve years of imprisonment, during which he was subjected to prolonged interrogations and torture. He was held first in the prison at Ilava and Mirov, then transferred in April 1958 to the Leopoldov prison, where, as a consequence of pneumonia contracted while locked in solitary confinement for “singing a Christmas carol,” he died on March 23’‘ 1959. He was buried in the prison cemetery. After the resurgence of the Greek-Catholic Church, his body was translated by his confreres, on October 17 1969, to Michalovce, where he now rests in the Redemptorist church of the Holy Spirit.

His Holiness Pope John Paul II declared him Blessed in St. Peter’s Square on November 4th, 2001.

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