Blessed Josef Mayr-Nusser

Blessed Josef Mayr-NusserAlso known as

  • Pepi (nickname)
  • Martyr of the First Commandment



Raised in a pious, rural Italian farm family; his brother Jakob became a priest. Devotee of Blessed Antoine-Frédéric Ozanam and Saint Vincent de Paul. To follow their example, he joined the Saint Vincent de Paul Society in 1932, and by 1937 was the president of the Bolzano, Italy division. In addition to directly caring for the poor, he became a vocal spokesman for them. A member of Catholic Action, in 1934 he became the head of the organization in the diocese of Trent, Italy. Student of the writing of Saint Thomas More and Saint Thomas Aquinas, concentrating on their correspondence as he thought that letters would reveal the real men themselves. He joined the covert antiNazi group Andreas Hofer Bund in 1939. Married to Hildegard Straub on 26 May 1942; their son Alberto was born in 1943.

Drafted into the German army in World War II, assigned to an SS unit in 1944, and sent to Prussia for training. On 4 October 1944 he announced that his faith prevented him from taking the oath of loyalty and obedience to Hitler, or of cooperating with the antiChristian Nazi ideology. Imprisoned for his belief, Josef was sentenced in February 1945 to be executed in the Dachau concentration camp, he died while en route there. Martyr.





MLA Citation

  • “Blessed Josef Mayr-Nusser“. CatholicSaints.Info. 29 May 2021. Web. 16 June 2021. <>