For a time he followed the legal profession, and was remarkable for his advocacy of the poor and his respectful language towards his opponents. Finding it difficult to become both a rich lawyer and a good Christian, Fidelis entered the Capuchin Order, and embraced a life of austerity and prayer.
He rejoiced at being sent to Switzerland by the newly-founded Congregation of Propaganda. . . . When preaching at Sevis, he was fired at by a Calvinist, but the fear of death could not deter him from proclaiming divine truth. After his sermon, he was waylaid by a body of Protestants headed by a minister, who attacked him and tried to force him to embrace their so-called reform. But he said, “I came to refute your errors, not to embrace them; I will never renounce Catholic doctrine, which is the truth of all ages, and I fear not death.” On this they fell upon him with their poignards, and the first martyr of Propaganda went to receive his palm.
Illustration and text from Pictorial Lives of the Saints With Reflections for Every Day in the Year (New York: Benziger Bros., 1922).