WOLFGANG RAUFER, GEORGE PRUCKMAIR, AND HANS AICHER, A. D. 1585 In the year 1585, three brethren, namely, Wolfgang Raufer, George Pruckmair, and Hans Aicher were apprehended for the faith, while on a journey, half a league from Riet, they having taken some refreshments in an inn, and after eating returned thanks. Hence, immediately beadles were sent for, and it was told that there were people there like Anabaptists. While they were then counting out the money for what they had received, and the innkeeper took it, the wicked men came, apprehended all three of them, and took them to Riet. A few days after, they were taken from Riet to Berckhausen, where the council and the judges sent eminent doctors to them, who were to speak with them, and if possible to overcome them and turn them from their faith; but they could accomplish nothing, nor were they (neither the doctors nor the priests) able, by disputing, in any wise to turn these brethren. In the meantime they executed the aforementioned Brother Leonhart Sumeraver, with the sword, on a Friday, about eight o'clock in the morning. Afterwards the judge and other lords went into the castle, and announced it to these brethren, and told them that if they would not renounce, that they should share the same fate with him; whereupon they replied, "We are ready to die; whatever be God's will with us, we will patiently suffer." Now when they had been imprisoned for a considerable time, about fourteen weeks, at Berchhausen, and they could not prevail upon them, nor intimidate them, they were separately placed in carts, on the next following day of execution, namely, the 3rd of August, led forth from prison, and about four o'clock brought before the council house, where the royal decree was read to them, according to which they were to be dealt with. In the meantime the judge called the executioner, and commanded him, that he should bind these three persons and convey them out to the usual place of execution, and then (since they had been sentenced from life to death) to execute them with the sword, and afterwards lay them upon a pile of wood and burn them with fire. Thereupon, Brother Wolfgang replied, "Not from life to death, but through death into eternal life." Then George and Wolfgang said, "Now since we must die, we die solely for the sake of the divine truth, for we have done no evil or wrong to any one, and here is not a single person to whom we have done any injury, or who can complain of us; since we then must lose our lives for the faith and for the Word of God, we shall find it again in eternity, as the holy Gospel testifies." They then said to the authorities that they should henceforth take better heed, for the innocent blood should cry for vengeance upon those that were guilty of it; but since it was the will of God concerning them, they would willingly die, since our Lord Jesus Christ had to suffer the same death in this world. Then Wolfgang said to George and Hans, "Now my dear brethren, we will take leave from one another; and let us be joyful, for the Lord is with us." Thereupon, Brother George, requested the executioner, that he would loose their hands a little, so that they could give each other the hand, and thus take leave; to which the executioner consented, doing it willingly. Thus they took joyful leave from one another. In the meantime a priest came to Brother Wolfgang, and admonished him to renounce. But Brother Wolfgang briefly answered him, that he should himself renounce his ungodly life and fornication; and would not tolerate the priest with him. He then went on, and when he came into the marketplace, he commenced to sing joyfully, and then gave praise and thanks to God, that they had come to this, that they might be truly refined. And he further said, "Would to God, that among this multitude of people there might be some one from our country that could inform our brethren of this; then we would greatly thank God for it. However, we trust that God will send some one that will notify them of this, whether it be orally or by writing; and this causes our heart to rejoice." This wish was also fulfilled, as the facts show. Then Wolfgang said to the executioner, "Now, Master Christoffel, I shall henceforth be more quiet, and contain myself a little; but my heart experiences no anxiety at all, but there is only laughter within; and if- my brethren, my wife and child, knew this, they would rejoice for our sakes, though they might otherwise, according to the flesh, weep and mourn. And I pray, and also hope, that God will send some one to our country, to our church, who will for us take leave from all brethren and sisters, our wives and children, and all our acquaintances according to the flesh." While Wolfgang was thus speaking, they were led out and came to the place of execution. The other two brethren, George and Hans, had mostly been silent; but when they arrived at the place of execution, all three of them were joyful, again took leave from one another, and offered up their prayer together in quietness. They were then beheaded, and their bodies laid upon piles of wood and burnt. When the executioner had performed this, he said to the people, "These persons would not desist from their faith, nor would they tolerate priests; they also have a much stronger faith than I and all that are here. I would rather execute thirty robbers than these." Thus these dear brethren testified to the faith in Jesus Christ and the divine truth with their blood, to which end God gave them power and strength, for which praise be to Him forever. Amen.