St. Laszlo (c. 1040-1095), also known as St. Ladislaus I of Hungary, was born to a royal family in Krakow, Poland. His father became King Bela of Hungary, and his mother was the daughter of the King of Poland. He was raised as a Christian, spending his childhood in the court of the Polish king. After the death of his father and brother, he became the King of Hungary in 1077 and also later the King of Croatia in 1091. He was a beloved king, highly regarded as a moral and pious man and a great leader. He is remembered for his accomplishments in bringing peace and stability to his country following the strife of civil war, for his success in defending the kingdom of Hungary against the invading Cumans, and for politically and financially supporting the spread of Christianity in his kingdom. According to legend, while in battle he witnessed a Cuman warrior abducting a Hungarian girl. He pursued the enemy, defeated him, and liberated the girl. Because of his skills in military and diplomacy, as well as his religious devotion and chivalry, St. Laszlo was chosen to lead the first Crusade to the Holy Land, but died before the mission commenced. He was canonized by Pope Celestine III. His feast day is June 27.
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