The more Father Seraphinus Shih refused Tui-Shih Li’s encouragement and enticement of apostasy, the more the Communists pounded away on him, beating him, clubbing him, kicking him without stopping.
The more he remained constant in his faith, the more the Communists resented him, loathed him, hated him.
With each passing day, the brutality of his torturers increased. His hands were bound behind his back by tying his thumbs together with wire, then his big toes were bound together with wire, and, finally, his legs were pulled behind him so that his toes and thumbs were joined by a short wire, so short that he could only kneel or lie on his side at all times. He remained hogtied for several weeks, and the beatings continued.
“We know that you don’t fear death, but we will beat and torture you continuously so that you will never possess more than half of your life. Thus being half alive and half dead, you will agree with what we say,” the torturers taunted.
When Father Seraphinus was dragged back to his place among the other prisoners after interrogations, he never complained. He merely lay with his body quivering from pain. Occasionally, only a sob would escape.
But Father Seraphinus never gave in.
Then, on January 20, Father Seraphinus was rounded up with five fellow monks: Chrysostomus Chang, Brother Eligius Hsu, Brother Damianus Huang, Brother Alexius Liu, and Brother Joannes Maria Miao.
“You are going to be freed,” the soldiers told them.
Jostled in the madness, the monks fell to their knees. With their swollen hands tied and chained behind their backs, they couldn’t even cross themselves – In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost – a final time.
The death squad – Communist soldiers at the ready – loaded their rifles with fresh rounds of ammo.
Shots rang out. One, then the next, followed by the next, the monks collapsed upon the blood-splashed, frozen ground. Their lifeless bodies, dragged to a nearby sewage ditch and dumped into a heap, one on top of the other. Alerted by the shots, wild dogs, roaming the village’s dirt roads, scavenging for scraps, hurried over to the bodies to investigate. Sniffing, they lapped up the warm blood, steaming in the icy air.
It was all over. Our Lady of Consolation was no more.
VIVA CRISTO REY! 萬歲耶穌基督國王!