On September 1, 1939, Hitler's death troops invaded Poland.
On September 7, 1939, Reinhard Heydrich, head of the Reich Main Security Office, ordered, "The leading layers of the Polish population should be disposed of as much as possible."
The German Socialists soon began targeting the intellectual elites, in an action of repression, retaliation and execution called the Intelligenzaktion. Subsequently, 50,000 teachers, priests, landowners, social and political activists were executed. Another 50,000 were shipped to extermination camps, where most were killed.
Father Antoni Zawistowski, along with bishops and about 100 other priests from Lublin, Chełm and other towns, were arrested on November 17, 1939. On November 23, the Jesuits were arrested.
Transported to Sachsenhausen, during the solemnity of Pentecost 1940, Father Zawistowski secretly celebrated Mass for the Polish priests, his fellow prisoners.
"We are here for faith, the Church and the Fatherland; for this matter we consciously give life," he said.
On December 14, 1940, he was shipped to Dachau extermination camp, where he received the number 22553 and was beaten, starved, tortured and forced to labor.
After he was, again, beaten and tortured by one of the guards, Father Zawistowski died, on June 4, 1942.
VIVA CRISTO REY! Niech żyje Chrystus Król!