Wednesday, September 7, 2016
The Emperor and Religion -- 100th Anniversary of the Death of Franz Joseph
On the 100th year of death of Emperor Franz Joseph I, Schönbrunn Palace, also shows its religious side. A reading speaks of the downfall of the ancient world.
Vienna (kath.net/cz) 2016 brings the 100th anniversary of the most famous emperor of modern, Austrian history - Emperor Franz Joseph I. Historians speak of the Catholic Monarchs and mean the King of Spain. France is referred to as the eldest daughter of the Church - at least since the French Revolution, it is hardly still that. But the Emperor of Austria, the Habsburgs, are probably simply just the Catholic dynasty. And Emperor Franz Joseph was entirely in this tradition.
Influenced by his devout mother, Bavarian princess and afterwards, Archduchess Sophie, the emperor developed a very natural relationship with the Catholic faith. In Schönbrunn Palace one can see his worn pew and his personal rosary he prayed upon. An image showing the emperor in prayer for those who died in his time, often murdered, family members, his wife Elisabeth, his son Rudolf, his brother Maximilian of Mexico, his nephew Franz Ferdinand, etc.
The hymn written in 1854 in honor of his marriage to Elisabeth became imperial anthem. The official anthem of Imperial Austria says: God save, God defend our Emperor, our land - powerful because he supports the faith, he leads us with a wise hand ... the whole country was Catholic and focused on the faith and which it was above all, thanks to its former leadership, the imperial house. Therefore, his nephew, Otto von Habsburg once said that the de-Christianization of Europe was due mainly to the ruling classes, and therefore, it would also be their responsibility to rebuild the Christian West.
In many current discussions one seems to recognize the fact that the Christian West fallen with its faithful Emperor. Karl Kraus has made a monument of "The Last Days of Mankind." The Austrian actor Martin Ploderer, himself connected to the faith, will be reading on the 8th and 9th of September, at 7 o'clock, against the backdrop of the imperial hearse which led the emperor on his last journey, within the Schönbrunn Palace, from this epochal work. Ploderer is a highlight of the anniversary year of the Catholic Emperor, Franz Joseph I of Austria and his time.