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|St. Jean de Brebeuf, SJ (1593-1649)
Brebeuf comes from a long line of sturdy, handsome, Frenchman and is a yearly favorite come March. This big man was known for his massive build, commanding presence, and brilliant intellect which makes him a perennial powerhouse in the tournament. He joined the Society of Jesus in 1617 and in 1625 went to play internationally in the missionary leagues of what is now known as Canada. As a top seed, this “Apostle of the Hurons,” won his first converts to Catholicism in just ten years (1635). He was brutally martyred in 1649 along-side a fellow Jesuit… but was respected until the end because of his bracket busting bravery. It is said that Brebeuf endured a brutal martyrdom that included being scalped and then “baptized” with boiling water.
It’s hard not to put your money on J de. As one of the North American Martyrs
he’s the ultimate team player. His mental toughness is key when you consider that he
not only wrote the Jesuit Relations, but also the famous Huron Carol, which is recited to this
day. The Huron (Ouendat) People called him “Echon” which translates “healing tree” because of his savvy use of medicines coupled with his impressive physique. Show me the versatility: This man simultaneously coined the word “Lacrosse” and was the first Jesuit fluent in the Huron language. How about good under pressure: legend has it that after Brebeuf finally died, the Huron ate his heart, not only out of respect but also to gain the courage that allowed him to endure his agonizing death without even crying out in pain once. Don’t doubt the real deal…this Jean’s got it goin’ on!
|St. Jean-Francois Regis, SJ (1597-1640)
Jean Francois was born in the south of France in 1597 and entered the Jesuit novitiate at age 19. His enthusiasm for the faith was contagious and he strived for the conversion of the French Huguenots. He is a major player thanks to his courageous work with people suffering from bubonic plague. His skill as a preacher and evangelist were second to none, and he was known to convert entire crowds to the faith in one fell swoop!Regis should not be overlooked because of his skinny and often infirm constitution. He is fiery, courageous, and “has heart,” which makes him a serious threat to those more established/well known saints. He’s got a horse in this race, and you’d better believe it!