Joan of Arc
A French patriot who burned at stakeby Rit Nosotro First Published:: 2003
Joan of Arc, the Maid of Orleans, was the third child of parent Jacques d' Arc and Isabelle de Vouthon. She was born in a peasant's world and spent most of her life helping her parents in the farm.
At the age of twelve, it is said that Joan hear "voices" of St. Michael, St. Catherine, and St. Margaret of which she believed were sent from God. These voices told her that it was her divine mission to liberate her country from the English and help the dauphin gain the French throne. The voices also told Joan to cut her hair, dress in a man's uniform and to "pick up the arms."
Joan gained approval of the captain of the dauphin's forces the board of theologians who gave her troops to command and the rank of captain after she had passed the examination. Joan was a pious leader of her army - by the time her army had reached Orleans, she had every soldier in her army going to Mass and going to confessions. She considered the righteousness of her armies so important that she didn't want to stay in Orleans upon arrival, but wanted to stay with her army, "since they were all well confessed and repentant and of good will."
At the Battle of Orleans, in the May of 1429, Joan led the troops to a miraculous victory over the English. She continued fighting the English in other locations along Loire. Her troops were so feared that when Lord Talbot had learned she was approaching, the arm at Patay, most of the English troops and Commander Sir John Fastlofe fled the battlefield.
When Charles VII was crowned King of France on July 17, 1492 in Reims Cathedral. As for gratitude, Joan was given a place of honor next to the king during the coronation and was ennobled for her services to the country of France.
However, despite all the joyous events, Joan was captured by the Burundians in 1430 while defending Compeigne near Paris and was sold to the English. In return, the English handed Joan over to the Ecclesiastical Court at Rouen led Pierre Cauchon, to be tried for witchcraft and heresy. But, much of the blame to her wearing man's clothing. Joan was told that for a woman to wear men's clothing was a crime against God. She did not change for the voices hadn't told her change and because she needed the armor for protection against sexual abuse by jailors. Her determination was seen as a offense toward the English who finally decided her fate. Joan was convicted after fourteen month interrogation and on May 30, 1431 she was burned at stake in the Rouen market place. She was nineteen years old, and meanwhile all this happened, it said that Charles VII made no attempt to help or rescue her.
A second posthumous trial was held twenty-five years later and she was pronounced innocent of the charges which were pressed on to her. She was beatified in 1909 and canonized in 1920 by Pope Benedict XV.