Biography of Leokadia Matuszewska (Blessed Sister Maria Heliodora, CSFN)

Born February 8, 1906, in Stara Guta. Finished four years of the German high school. In 1933 she entered the Congregation of the Holy Family of Nazareth; she spent her novitiate in Grodno and professed vows taking the name Sr. Maria Heliodora. From 1935 she was at the Holy Family convent in Novogrudok where she worked as the portress and in the kitchen and cleaned the school. On the night of July 17/18, 1943, the Gestapo arrested 120 residents of Novogrudok. The Sisters with their mother superior offered themselves in place of the arrested citizens. July 31, 1943, in the evening, the mother superior and ten sisters were summoned to the local commissariat, and at dawn on August 1 they were all shot in a nearby forest. March 5, 2000, the Sisters were beatified by Blessed Pope John Paul II. Sources: “Beatifikatsia muchenits iz Novogrudka”; “Doroga v ochakh Gospodnikh…”; Górska, CSFN, “Męczennice z Nowogródka”
Variant Names:
Matuszewska, Leokadia; Blessed Sister Maria Heliodora, CSFN; Matushevskaia, Leokadiia (Mariia Geliodora)
Hrodna (Belarus); Navahrudak (Belarus)
female; clergy and religious; executed