- Carmen Salles y Barangueras (1848-1911) was born outside Barcelona, Spain, and from her youth nurtured a special devotion to the Virgin Mary. Despite her parents' desire that she should marry, she entered the entered religious life and in 1892 founded the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception, seeking to fulfill her plan for "the formation of young people, using the heart to reach the intellect as well." The order she founded now boasts 60 communities in 11 countries, stretching across all of the world's continents.
- Eugen Bossilkov (1900-1952) is the first victim of Stalinism to be beatified, as well as the first Catholic from Bulgaria-- a predominantly Orthodox population-- to claim that honor. Having been invited to visit Bulgaria, Pope John Paul II had hoped to conduct the beatification ceremony in that country, but divisions within the Orthodox Church there led to a postponement of the papal visit, and thus led to the beatification in Rome.
Born in Belene, on the Danube, Vincent Bossilkov took the name "Eugen" when he entered the Passionist community. A promising student, he was assigned to study in Rome, where he wrote a thesis on the union between the Church in Bulgaria and the Holy See. That intellectual proposition was tested when, having become bishop of Nicopoli, he was asked by the Communist government to renounce his attachment to Rome. When he refused, he was arrested and tortured.
Bishop Bossilkov was apparently killed by a firing squad in 1952. His surviving niece reports that at their last meeting he said, "I have the sense that the Lord has given me the grace to accept death." Because of the intense secrecy that enshrouded the Soviet death camps, his death was never officially accepted by the Holy See until 1975, when the new Bulgarian head of state, Todor Zikov, an anti-Stalinist, confirmed that he had been killed.