samedi 18 novembre 2017

Saint NOÉ, patriarche


Patriarche de l'Ancien Testament

01  Le Seigneur dit à Noé: «Entre dans l'arche, toi et toute ta famille, car tu es le seul juste que je vois dans cette génération.

02  De tous les animaux purs, tu prendras sept couples de chaque espèce; des animaux qui ne sont pas purs, tu prendras un couple de chaque espèce;

03  et des oiseaux du ciel, sept couples de chaque espèce pour en perpétuer la race sur toute la terre.

04  Car il ne reste plus que sept jours, et je vais faire tomber la pluie sur la terre, pendant quarante jours et quarante nuits, pour effacer de la surface du sol tous les êtres que j'ai faits.»

05  Noé fit tout ce que le Seigneur lui avait commandé.

10  Sept jours plus tard, les eaux du déluge étaient sur la terre.

Le Déluge (Gn 6-9) Dieu renouvelle la surface de la terre et fait Alliance avec tous les hommes!

Après le déluge, Dieu dit à Noé et à ses fils: «Voici que moi, j’établis mon alliance avec vous, avec tous vos descendants, et avec tous les êtres vivants qui sont autour de vous: les oiseaux, les animaux domestiques, toutes les bêtes sauvages, tout ce qui est sorti de l’arche pour repeupler la terre. Oui, j’établis mon alliance avec vous: aucun être vivant ne sera plus détruit par les eaux du déluge, il n’y aura plus de déluge pour ravager la terre.» Dieu dit encore: «Voici le signe de l’alliance que j’établis entre moi et vous, et avec tous les êtres vivants qui sont autour de vous, pour toutes les générations à venir: Je mets mon arc au milieu des nuages, pour qu’il soit le signe de l’alliance entre moi et la terre. Lorsque je rassemblerai les nuages au-dessus de la terre, et que l’arc-en-ciel paraîtra au milieu des nuages, je me souviendrai de mon alliance avec vous et avec tous les êtres vivants, et les eaux ne produiront plus le déluge, qui détruit tout être vivant.»
Dieu bénit Noé et ses fils. Il dit : "Soyez féconds, multipliez-vous, remplissez la terre." Gn. 9, 1


[Hebrew Nôah, "rest"; Greek Noah; Latin Noah].

The ninth patriarch of the Sethite line, grandson of Mathusala and son of Lamech, who with his family was saved from the Deluge and thus became the second father of the human race (Genesis 5:25-9:29).

The name Noah was give to him because of his father's expectation regarding him. "This same", said Lamech on naming him, "shall comfort us from the works and labours of our hands on [or more correctly "from", i.e. "which come from"] the earth, which the Lord hath cursed." Most commentators consider Lamech's words as an expression of a hope, or as a prophecy, that the child would in some way be instrumental in removing the cursepronounced against Adam (Genesis 3:17 sqq.). Others rather fancifully see in them a reference to Noah's future discovery of wine, which cheers the heart of man; whilst others again, with greater probability, take them as expressing merely a natural hope on the part of Lamech that his son would become the support and comfort of his parents, and enable them to enjoy rest and peace in their later years.

Amid the general corruption which resulted from the marriages of "the sons of God" with "the daughters of men" (Genesis 6:2 sqq.), that is of the Sethites with the Cainite women, "Noah was a just and perfect man in his generations" and "walked with God" (6:9). Hence, when God decreed to destroy men from the face of the earth, he "found grace before the Lord". According to the common interpretation of Genesis 6:3, Noah first received divine warning of the impending destruction one hundred and twenty years before it occurred, and therefore when he was four hundred and eighty years old (cf. 7:11); he does not seem, however, to have received at this time any details as to the nature of the catastrophe.

After he reached the age of five hundred years three sons, Sem, Cham, and Japheth, were born to him (6:10). These had grown to manhood and had taken wives, when Noah was informed of God's intention to destroy menby a flood, and received directions to build an ark in which he and his wife, his sons and their wives, and representatives, male and female, of the various kinds of animals and birds, were to be saved (6:13-21). How long before the Deluge this revelation was imparted to him, it is impossible to say; it can hardly have been more than seventy-five years (cf. 7:11), and probably was considerably less.

Noah had announced the impending judgement and had exhorted to repentance (2 Peter 2:5), but no heed was given to his words (Matthew 24:37 sqq.; Luke 17:26, 27; 1 Peter 3:20), and, when the fatal time arrived, no one except Noah's immediate family found refuge in the ark. Seven days before the waters began to cover the earth, Noah was commanded to enter the ark with his wife, his three sons and their wives, and to take with him seven pairs of all clean, and two pairs of all unclean animals and birds (7:1-4). It has been objected that, even though the most liberal value is allowed for the cubit, the ark would have been too small to lodge at least two pairs of every species of animal and bird. But there can be no difficulty if, as is now generally admitted, the Deluge was not geographically universal (see DELUGE; ARK).

After leaving the ark Noah built an altar, and taking of all clean animals and birds, offered holocausts upon it. Godaccepted the sacrifice, and made a covenant with Noah, and through him with all mankind, that He would not waste the earth or destroy man by another deluge. The rainbow would for all times be a sign and a reminder of this covenant. He further renewed the blessing which He had pronounced on Adam (Genesis 1:28), and confirmedthe dominion over animals which He had granted to man. In virtue of this dominion man may use animals for food, but the flesh may not be eaten with the blood (8:20-9:17).

Noah now gave himself to agriculture, and planted a vineyard. Being unacquainted with the effects of fermented grape-juice, he drank of it too freely and was made drunk. Cham found his father lying naked in his tent, and made a jest of his condition before his brothers; these reverently covered him with a mantle. On hearing of the occurrence Noah cursed Chanaan, as Cham's heir, and blessed Sem and Japheth.

He lived three hundred and fifty years after the Deluge, and died at the age of nine hundred and fifty years (9:20-29). In the later books of Scripture Noah is represented as the model of the just man (Sirach 44:17;Ezekiel 14:14, 20), and as an exemplar of faith (Hebrews 11:7). In the Fathers and tradition he is considered as the type and figure of the Saviour, because through him the human race was saved from destruction and reconciled with God (Ecclus., 44:17,18). Moreover, as he built the ark, the only means of salvation from theDeluge, so Christ established the Church, the only means of salvation in the spiritual order.

The Babylonian account of the Deluge in many points closely resembles that of the Bible. Four cuneiform recensions of it have been discovered, of which, however, three are only short fragments. The complete story is found in the Gilgamesh epic (Tablet 11) discovered by G. Smith among the ruins of the library of Assurbanipal in 1872. Another version is given by Berosus. In the Gilgamesh poem the hero of the story is Ut-napishtim (or Sit-napishti, as some read it, surnamed Atra-hasis "the very clever"; in two of the fragments he is simply styled Atra-hasis, which name is also found in Berosus under the Greek form Xisuthros. The story in brief is as follows: Acouncil of the gods having decreed to destroy men by a flood, the god Ea warns Ut-napishtim, and bids him build a ship in which to save himself and the seed of all kinds of life. Ut-napishtim builds the ship (of which, according to one version, Ea traces the plan on the ground), and places in it his family, his dependents, artisans, and domestic as well as wild animals, after which he shuts the door. The storm lasts six days; on the seventh the flood begins to subside. The ship steered by the helmsman Puzur-Bel lands on Mt. Nisir. After seven days Ut-napishtim sends forth a dove and a swallow, which, finding no resting-place for their feet return to the ark, and then a raven, which feeds on dead bodies and does not return. On leaving the ship, Ut-napishtim offers a sacrificeto the gods, who smell the godly odour and gather like flies over the sacrificer. He and his wife are then admitted among the gods. The story as given by Berosus comes somewhat nearer to the Biblical narrative. Because of the striking resemblances between the two many maintain that the Biblical account is derived from the Babylonian. But the differences are so many and so important that this view must be pronounced untenable. The Scripturalstory is a parallel and independent form of a common tradition.


HUMMELAUER, Comm. in Gen. (Paris, 1895), 257 sqq.; HOBERG, Die Genesis (Freiburg, 1908), 74 sqq.; SELBST, Handbuch zur bibl. Gesch. (Freiburg, 1910), 200 sqq.; SKINNER, Critic. and Exeg. Comm. on Gen. (New York, 1910), 133 sqq.; DILLMANN, Genesis, tr., I (Edinburgh, 1897), 228 sqq.; DHORME, Textes religieux assyro-babyl. (Paris, 1907), 100 sqq.; VIGOUROUX, La bible et les decouv. mod., I (6th ed., Paris, 1896), 309 sqq.; SCHRADER, Die Keilinschrift. u. das A. T. (2nd ed., Giessen, 1882), 55 sqq.; JENSEN in SCHRADER,Keilinschriftl. Bibliothek, VI, i, (Berlin 1889-), 228 sqq.; VIGOUROUX, Dict. de la Bible, s. vv. Ararat, Arche, and Noe; HILPRECHT, The earliest version of the Babylonian deluge story (Philadelphia, 1910).

Bechtel, Florentine. "Noah." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 11. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 18 Nov. 2017<>.

Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Sean Hyland.

Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. February 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.

Noah's Ark

The Hebrew name to designate Noah's Ark, the one which occurs again in the history of Moses' childhood, suggests the idea of a box of large proportions, though the author of Wisdom terms it a vessel (Wisdom 14:6). The same conclusion is reached from the dimensions attributed to it by the Bible narrative: three hundred cubits in length, fifty in breadth, and thirty in height. The form, very likely foursquare, was certainly not very convenient for navigation, but, as has been proven by the experiments of Peter Jansen and M. Vogt, it made the Ark a very suitable device for shipping heavy cargoes and floating upon the waves without rolling or pitching. The Ark was constructed of gofer wood, or cypress, smeared without and within with pitch, or bitumen, to render it water-tight. The interior contained a certain number of rooms distributed among three stories. The text mentions only one window, and this measuring a cubit in height, but there existed possibly some others to give to the inmates of the Ark air and light. A door had also been set in the side of the Ark; God shut it from the outside when Noahand his family had gone in. Apart from Noah's family, the Ark was intended to receive and keep animals that were to fill the earth again (Genesis 6:19-20; 7:2-3) and all the food which was necessary for them. After the Flood, the Ark rested upon the mountains of Armenia (Genesis 8:4 — according to Vulgate and Douay, the mountains of Ararat, according to Authorized Version). Tradition is divided as to the exact place where the Ark rested. Josephus(Ant., I, iii, 6), Berosus (Eusebius, Praep. Ev., IX, ii, P.G., XXI, 697), Onkelos, Pseudo-Jonathan, St. Ephrem, locate it in Kurdistan. Berosus relates that a part of Xisuthrus's ship still remained there, and that pilgrims used to scrape off the bitumen from the wreck and make charms of it against witchcraft. Jewish and Armenian traditionadmitted Mount Ararat as the resting place of the Ark. In the first century B.C. the Armenians affirmed that remnants of it could yet be seen. The first Christians of Apamea, in Phrygia, erected in this place a convent called the monastery of the Ark, where a feast was yearly celebrated to commemorate Noah's coming out of the Arkafter the Flood.

Suffice it to remark that the text of Genesis 8:4 mentioning Mount Ararat is somewhat lacking in clearness, and that nothing is said in the Scripture concerning what became of the Ark after the Flood. Many difficulties have been raised, especially in our epoch, against the pages of the Bible in which the history of the Flood and of theArk is narrated. This is not the place to dwell upon these difficulties, however considerable some may appear. They all converge towards the question whether these pages should be considered as strictly historicalthroughout, or only in their outward form. The opinion that these chapters are mere legendary tales, Easternfolklore, is held by some non-Catholic scholars; according to others, with whom several Catholics side, they preserve, under the embroidery of poetical parlance, the memory of a fact handed down by a very old tradition. This view, were it supported by good arguments, could be readily accepted by a Catholic; it has, over the age-long opinion that every detail of the narration should be literally interpreted and trusted in by the historian, the advantage of suppressing as meaningless some difficulties once deemed unanswerable.

Souvay, Charles. "Noah's Ark." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 1. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1907. 18 Nov. 2017 <>.

Transcription. This article was transcribed for New Advent by Michael T. Barrett. Dedicated to Sean Mazza.

Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. March 1, 1907. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.

San Noè Patriarca

Desterà forse un po’ di sorpresa il fatto che il santo oggi in questione non solo non sia cristiano, ma neppure ebreo come i patriarchi ed i profeti biblici. Analogo caso è però costituito dal re-sacerdote San Melchisedech.

Il patriarca Noè è infatti una figura nota, seppur sotto diversi nomi, ad altri popoli mesopotamici e la storia del diluvio a lui connessa è narrata anche da vari antichissimi testi babilonesi, quali per esempio l’Epopea di Ghilgamesh ed il Poema di Atrakhasis. Il fatto storico che probabilmente ispirò questo racconto leggendario sta in un catastrofico evento verificatosi forse nell’area dei due maestosi fiumi Tigri ed Eufrate, le cui inondazioni opportunamente incanalate si rivelarono sempre fonti di benessere, ma con le loro piene eccessive furono talvolta causa di devastazioni.La figura di Noè è così nota da rendere incompleto ogni possibile tentativo di riproporre così in breve la sua vicenda, narrata per esteso nei capitoli 6-9 del libro della Genesi, pur con qualche incongruenza, dovuta all’intrecciarsi di due differenti tradizioni. L’arca tratteggiata nel racconto biblico con misure esorbitanti, lunga 156 metri, alto 30, larga 26, con la capacità di 65/70.000 metri cubi, desta da secoli lo stupore degli artisti, che cercano di raffigurarla, e degli archeologi, che invano tentano di scovarne eventuali resti, nonostante le discordanze sulla suo possibile collocazione.Noè costituisce comunque un emblema dei giusti presenti indubbiamente anche nel mondo pagano: Abramo verrà infatti parecchi secoli dopo. Dio stabilì già con Noè un’alleanza anticipatrice di quella che stipulò poi con Israele sul monte Sinai. Questo è dunque l’atto culminante del racconto del diluvio, cioè il Signore che nella sua giustizia irrompe per colpire il male dilagante con le acque impetuose, simbolo per l’antico Vicino Oriente del nulla e del caos. Ma Dio si fa portatore di salvezza nei confronti di tutti i giusti, incarnati in Noè, “uomo giusto e integro” in una “terra corrotta e piena di violenza” (Gn 6,9.11).L’arcobaleno sfolgorante nel cielo divenne segno non solo del giudizio divino ormai ottemperato, ma anche della nuova alleanza cosmica intersorsa tra Dio e l’intera creazione. Tuttavia il male non fu così del tutto estirpato, riaffiorando infatti nel finale del racconto della storia di Noè, più precisamente nella mancanza di rispetto che Cam, uno dei tre figli di Noè, ebbe nei confronti di suo padre, qualora “vide il padre scoperto e raccontò la cosa ai due fratelli” (Gn 9,22).

Fu così evidente che purtroppo, anche nell’umanità appena rinnovata, il germe del male era già pronto a risorgere tra gli uomini e trovare nuovo vigore.

Autore: Fabio Arduino

dimanche 12 novembre 2017

Bienheureux JOSÉ MEDES FERRIS, martyr

Bienheureux Joseph-Raymond Medes

  José Ramon ( Joseph-Raymond ) Medes Ferris, fidèle laïc, naquit le 13 janvier 1885 à Algemesi dans la province de Valence. Ses parents étaient paysans, et lui-même était agriculteur.

Il fut baptisé le jour de sa naissance en l' église Saint-Jacques d' Algemesi.

Il menait une vie d' agriculteur conscient de ses devoirs religieux. Il faisait partie du syndicat agricole catholique. Il épousa à 28 ans, le 29 janvier 1913, Marie de la Purification Esteve Martinez.

Il adhéra à l' Action Catholique et fut un excellent catéchiste. Au début de l' insurrection qui allait donner suite à la réaction républicaine et à la persécution religieuse, il donna asile dans sa maison à deux Frères Carmes déchaux et à une religieuse Cistercienne. Ceux-ci furent découverts et arrêtés le 7 novembre 1936.

Le bienheureux agriculteur fut arrêté le jour suivant et emprisonné. Il subit le martyre, avec ses frères, dans la nuit du 11 au 12 novembre 1936, à Alcudia de Carnet, aux cris de " Vive le Christ-Roi ! Vive le Sacré-Coeur de Jésus ! "

Il a été béatifié avec les autres martyrs de Valence, le 22 mars 2001, par le Pape Jean-Paul II.

Blessed José Medes Ferrís



Beato Giuseppe Raimondo Medes Ferris Laico coniugato, martire

José Ramón Medes Ferrís, fedele laico, nacque il 13 gennaio 1885 ad Algemesí (Valencia) e fu battezzato il medesimo giorno nella chiesa parrocchiale di San Giacomo di Algemesí. Contadino, appartenente al Sindacato Cattolico agricolo, si sposò il 29 gennaio 1913, con la Purificación Esteve Martínez. Aderì all’Azione Cattolica e fu un eccellente catechista. All’inizio della Rivoluzione ospitò a casa sua due fratelli carmelitani scalzi e una sorella suora cistercense, i quali furono imprigionati il 7 novembre 1936. Il servo di Dio fu imprigionato il giorno seguente e la notte dall’11 al 12 novembre subì il martirio, insieme ai suoi fratelli, ad Alcudia de Carnet, al grido di: “Viva Cristo Re! Viva il Sacro Cuore di Gesù!”. La sua beatificazione è stata celebrata da Papa Giovanni Paolo II l’11 marzo 2001.

Martirologio Romano: Nel villaggio di Alcudia de Carlet nel territorio di Valencia in Spagna, beato Giuseppe Medes Ferrís, martire, al quale il Signore diede il premio eterno, nel corso della persecuzione religiosa, per la sua impavida fedeltà. 


12 de noviembre

1936 d.C.

   Nació en Algemesí. Casado con Purificación Esteve Martínez, no tuvieron hijos. Trabajaba en el campo. Era miembro de la Acción Católica, la Adoración Nocturna, terciario carmelita. Colaboró con el Sindicato Católico Agrícola. 

  Cuando cerraron los conventos en 1936, albergó en su casa a sus hermanos Ernesto y Vicente, carmelitas, y a su hermana Natividad, cisterciense. Con ellos rezaba todos los días el rosario y se ponían en manos de Dios animándose mutuamente. En 1936, el Frente Popular, arrestó a sus tres hermanos, y José y su esposa oraron intensamente. Al día siguiente José fue detenido y llevado al monasterio cisterciense de Fons Salutis, donde estaban sus hermanos pero no pudo hablar con ellos. Fue fusilado con sus tres hermanos en Alcudia de Carlet, mientras gritaron vivas a Cristo Rey y al Sagrado Corazón. José es hasta ahora el único de los hermanos beatificado, el 11 de marzo de 2001 por san Juan Pablo II.

Saint MARGARITO FLORES GARCIA, prêtre et martyr

Saint Margarito Flores Garcia

Prêtre mexicain et martyr ( 1927)

Canonisé le 21 mai 2000 avec Saint Cristóbal Magallanes et ses 24 compagnons.

Dans la grande persécution mexicaine, il fut arrêté en raison de son sacerdoce et abattu par une rafale de mitrailleuse à Tuliman au Mexique.
Martyrologe romain

Saint Margarito Flores

   Margarito Flores Garcia naquit le 22 février 1899 au Mexique, dans le diocèse de Chilapa à Taxco. Sa famile était d' origine humble, aussi, lorsqu' à 14 ans il décida d' entrer au séminaire, ses parents s' y opposèrent, ne pouvant subvenir à ses études. Il avait déjà terminé son école primaire, et gagnait sa vie depuis l'âge de douze ans, comme commis de magasin.

Finalement il réussit à les convaincre, et il entra au petit séminaire de Chilapa à l' âge de 15 ans. Pour gagner un peu d' argent et le donner à ses parents, il faisait office de coiffeur, pour les autres séminaristes. Il fut ordonné prêtre dans la chapelle du grand séminaire, le 5 avril 1924.

Il fut nommé vicaire de la paroisse de Chilpancingo, toujours dans l' Etat de Guerrero. Chaque premier vendredi du mois, il redoublait d' activité et attiraient ses paroissiens à la confession.

Lorsque les événements de 1926, qui allaient mener à la guerre civile, intervinrent, il fut nommé à Tecalpulco.
Il rendait une visite à un curé de la région, l' abbé Pedro Bustos, lorsqu' il fut arrêté par les troupes fédérales. Libérés, les deux prêtres partirent se réfugier en montagne. De temps en temps, ils descendaient chercher des vivres chez des proches.

L' interdiction du culte catholique par le gouvernement franc-maçon de Calles l' exposait à de grands risques ; néanmoins il partit pour Mexico, afin de prendre contact avec des proches, et de suivre des cours de dessin à l' académie Saint-Charles. C' était une façon pour lui de continuer son apostolat pacifique.

Un jour, il fut interrogé en chemin dans une auberge par des soldats fédéraux qui cherchaient un prêtre, mais il se fit passer pour médecin.

A Mexico, il fut appréhendé par la police, en juin 1927, car on le soupçonnait d' appartenir à la Ligue Nationale de Défense Religieuse. Il fut accusé d' avoir confessé des citoyens mexicains...En prison, il soutenait spirituellement ses codétenus.

Sur l' intervention de la famille Calvillo qu' il connaissait et qui était amie du général de la police, il fut finalement libéré fin juillet ; mais dès lors il redoubla de ferveur et se prépara au sacrifice ultime en se dévouant totalement à son ministère de prêtre. La mort du prêtre David Urribe (1 ), survenue en avril, pour avoir refusé de devenir évêque schismatique d' une Eglise créée par le gouvernement, lui inspira le martyre. Il repartit pour Chilapa en octobre. La veille il offrit sa messe pour le salut du Mexique.

Alors qu' il allait à Atenango del Rio pour secourir des âmes, il fut surpris par des soldats fédéraux. Les mains attachées, en sous-vêtements, et pieds nus, il fut forcé par les soldats qui étaient à cheval de parcourir sous les coups le chemin de Tuliman pour comparaître devant les autorités locales. Il réclamait de l' eau en vain et recevait des coups en échange.

 A l' issue de quelques questions expéditives, il fut condamné par le capitaine Manzo le 12 novembre.
On lui permit cependant de choisir le lieu de son exécution et le jeune prêtre leur désigna le côté arrière de l' église du bourg.

Il prit quelques minutes pour prier à haute voix le Tout Puissant,et il baisa le sol. Un des soldats du détachement lui demanda pardon et il lui répondit que non seulement il lui pardonnait, mais qu' il le bénissait...Ils le fusillèrent.

Le cadavre du prêtre resta trois heures sur le sol pour l' exemple. Plus tard deux bonnes personnes l' inhumèrent.

Dix-huit ans après son martyre, sont corps fut transféré à Taxco et plus tard enterré dans la chapelle de Notre-Seigneur d' Ojeda, le quartier de Taxco où il vit le jour.

Il fut béatifié en 1992 et canonisé par Jean-Paul II, le 21 mai 2000 à Rome.

Il est fêté le 21 mai. 

Lien ( en espagnol ) :

(1) Il fut canonisé le même jour que Margarito Flores.


Saint Margarito FLORES GARCIA

Prénom: Margarito
Pays: Mexique

Naissance: 22.02.1899  à Taxco (Guerrero – Diocèse de Chilapa)
Mort: 12.11.1927  à Tuliman (Guerrero)

Etat: Prêtre   Martyr du Groupe des 25 martyrs du Mexique (1915-1937)  2

Note: Prêtre en 1924. La mort héroïque du Père David URIBE  2  lui inspire le désir du martyr. Curé d’Atenango du Rio (Guerrero). Emprisonné et fusillé à Tuliman.

Béatification: 22.11.1992  à Rome  par Jean Paul II
Canonisation: 21.05.2000  à Rome  par Jean Paul II

Fête: 21 mai

Réf. dans l’Osservatore Romano: 1992 n.48   2000 n.22 p.5-7
Réf. dans la Documentation Catholique: 1993 n.1 p.49

Saint Margarito Flores-García



Saint Margarito Flores Garcia, Priest and Martyr

Taxco, Mexico, February 22, 1899 – Tulimán, Mexico, November 12, 1927

He was born in Taxco, Guerrero (Diocese of Chilapa) on February 22, 1899. Pastor of Atenango del Rio, Guerrero (Diocese of Chilapa). His three years in the ministry were enough to know his priestly character. The Vicar General of the Diocese appointed him vicar to act as pastor of Atenango del Rio, Guerrero. Father Margarito set to work. He was discovered and identified as a priest when he was about to reach that goal; he was imprisoned and taken to Tulimán, Guerrero, where orders were given to shoot him. Father Margarito asked permission to pray, he knelt for a moment, kissed the ground and then rose and waited for the shots that destroyed his head and forever united him to Christ the Priest, on November 12, 1927. On May 21, 2000, he was Canonized by Pope John Paul II together with 24 other martyrs of Mexico. The group is known as Christopher Magallanes Jara and 24 companion and is celebrated with an optional Memorial on May 21.Each is celebrated separately, on their martrydom anniversary.

Roman Martyrology: In the city of Tulimán Mexico, Saint Margarito Flores, Priest and Martyr, who, during the great persecution against the Church, was arrested for his priesthood and crowned by glorious martyrdom with the shooting.

Source: Santi e Beati


Martyr, priest; b. Feb. 22, 1899, Taxco, Guerrero, Diocese of Chilapa, Mexico; d. Nov. 12, 1927, Tulimán, between Chilapa and Chilpancingo. From the age of 12, Margarito dedicated himself to God's service, while working in the fields to help support his poverty-stricken family. He entered the seminary at Chilapa and was ordained priest (1924). Soon thereafter he was appointed professor in the seminary. He took refuge in Mexico City during the persecution and attended the academy of San Carlos. After he was arrested, then released there, he decided to return to Chilapa, where the vicar general had named him pastor of the parish at Atenango del Rio, Guerrero. He was captured upon his arrival, humiliated, and led to Tulimán where he was shot. Fr. Flores was both beatified (Nov. 22, 1992) and canonized (May 21, 2000) with Cristobal magallanes [see guadalajara, martyrs of, ss.] by Pope John Paul II.
Feast: May 25 (Mexico).
Bibliography: j. Cardoso, Los mártires mexicanos (Mexico City 1953).
[K. I. Rabenstein]
New Catholic Encyclopedia 
COPYRIGHT 2003 The Gale Group Inc.

The Cristero War: the Story Behind the Cover Up

Historian Gives Evaluation of Film, Explains What Happened in 1920s Mexico

By Kathleen Naab


If one asks a young Mexican about the basics of the Cristero War — what it was and when it happened — it's entirely possible to get a blank stare in response. Though one of the most important chapters in 20th-century Mexico, the war has been largely covered up.

The film "For Greater Glory," which opens Friday in the United States and has found great success in Mexico since it opened in April, aims to correct that injustice and bring the war and its heroes to light.

"For Greater Glory" (titled Cristiada in Spanish) is essentially historically accurate, says historian Ruben Quezada, who has written “For Greater Glory: The True Story of Cristiada" as a companion book to the film. The companion volume is being published by Ignatius Press and will be released June 15 in English and Spanish.

ZENIT asked Quezada for an overview of the history of the Cristero War, and about some of the heroes of the conflict — heroes both for society and for the Church.

ZENIT: Neither a film nor a ZENIT interview is sufficient to explain all the historical intricacies of such a complex epoch. Still, could you give us a brief overview of the Cristero War? 

Quezada: The Cristero War is a chapter in Mexico’s history in the 1920s, when thousands of Catholics answered this crucial question [of religious freedom] at the cost of their very lives. President Plutarco Calles launched a direct attack on the Catholic Church using articles from Mexico’s Constitution, which created this uprising and counter-revolution against the Mexican government during that time. The original rebellion was set off by the persecution of Roman Catholics and a ban on their public religious practices.

There are two important dates to point out here. 

The persecution began on Aug. 1, 1926, when the government re-enacted the penal code and forced the closure of all Catholic churches throughout the entire country with its new anticlerical laws. However, the first coordinated uprising for religious freedom did not occur until Jan. 1, 1927.

It was not until mid June 1929 when the truce was officially signed, bringing an end to the Cristero War.

ZENIT: Is For Greater Glory a historically accurate film? 

Quezada: Apart from some “artistic license” the film is essentially accurate.

ZENIT: The movie alludes to some discrepancy between the Vatican's position regarding the religious persecution, and that of the Cristero fighters. Could you explain this? 

Quezada: When the oppression was about to begin, the Vatican granted permission — requested by the Mexican bishops — to cease any Catholic religious services in order to avoid confrontations. Additionally, the Holy See wrote letters to the government requesting they abolish the Calles Law. The government ignored each request. As the war intensified, Rome continued to have direct communications with President Calles to ask for leniency. Not only were Vatican officials [in Mexico] dismissed, but diplomatic relations were broken off by the government.

Lastly, Pope Pius XI wrote an encyclical letter to the clergy and the faithful of Mexico to give them courage and hope during this persecution. There was really not much else the Holy See could do. On Nov. 18, 1926, the Pope sent the encyclical letter Iniquis Afflictisque (On the Persecution of the Church in Mexico) to offer prayers and encouragement during this difficult time.

ZENIT: Some of the characters of the film are real-life blesseds or saints. Who are they and what is their story?

Quezada: Anacleto González Flores (played by actor Eduardo Verástegui of Bella) was born on July 13, 1888, in Tepatitlán, Jalisco, Mexico. 

He was greatly involved in social and religious activities and was an enthusiastic member of the Catholic Association of Young Mexicans (ACJM). He taught classes in catechism, was dedicated to works of charity and wrote articles and books with a Christian spirit. In 1922 he married María Concepción Guerrero and they had two children. 

By 1926, the situation in Mexico had worsened and Anacleto, who up until this time had advocated passive, non-violent resistance, joined the cause of the National League for the Defense of Religious Freedom upon learning of the murder of four members of the ACJM.In January 1927 guerrilla warfare spread throughout Jalisco; and from his many hiding places, Anacleto wrote and sent bulletins and studied major strategies. The young man was captured on the morning of April 1, 1927, in the home of the Vargas González family, along with the three Vargas brothers. 

He was taken to Fort Colorado where his torture included being hung by his thumbs until his fingers were dislocated and having the bottom of his feet slashed. He refused, however, to supply his captors with any information. Anacleto González Flores was condemned to death and was shot together with the Vargas González brothers and Luis Padilla Gómez on that same day, April 1, 1927.

It is important to note here that Anacleto González Flores along with Miguel Gómez Loza both received the “Pro Ecclesia Et Pontifice” award for their incredible works of service to the Catholic Church.

Miguel Gómez Loza (played by actor Raúl Mendez) was born on Aug. 11, 1888, in Tepatitlán, Jalisco, Mexico. From a young age he had a strong love for God and a great devotion to the Blessed Mother.When he was 26, Miguel entered the University of Morelos where he earned a law degree, and eventually opened an office in Arandas (state of Jalisco) as an attorney.In 1915 he became a member of the ACJM, and in 1919 he established a national congress of Catholic workers to unify industry workers, commercial employees and agricultural laborers. He also worked tirelessly to defend the rights of the needy, which caused him to be arrested 59 times for organizing protests against the government.In 1922, Miguel married María Guadalupe Sánchez Barragán and they had three children. He joined the "National League for the Defense of Religious Freedom" in 1927, but believed in non-violence in order to resist the persecution. 

After the death of Anacleto, he was appointed by Catholics as governor of Jalisco and strove by all the means at his disposal to defend liberty and justice.By March of 1928, Miguel was living on a ranch near Atotonilco, Jalisco. On March 21, federal forces who had been hunting for him discovered his whereabouts; he was executed by firing squad the same day.

José Sanchez del Rio (played by actor Mauricio Kuri) was a young Cristero soldier who joined the uprising to defend religious liberty. He was horrified to see the attacks on the priests and the desecration of churches in his small hometown of Sahuayo, Michoacan.When the Cristero War broke out in 1926, his brothers joined the rebel forces, but his mother would not allow him to take part [because of his young age]. The rebel general, Prudencio Mendoza, also refused his enlistment.The general finally relented and allowed José to become the flag bearer of the troop. He was known to be one of the youngest members of the Cristero movement.After his arrest we know of the gruesome events that transpired after the government's failure to break José's resolve on the evening of Feb. 10, 1928: “Consequently they cut the bottom of his feet and obliged him to walk around the town toward the cemetery. They also at times cut him with a machete until he was bleeding from several wounds. He cried and moaned with pain, but he did not give in. At times they stopped him and said, ‘If you shout ‘Death to Christ the King’ we will spare your life.’ José would only shout, "I will never give in. Viva Cristo Rey!" When they reached the place of execution, they stabbed him numerous times with bayonets. He only shouted louder, "Viva Cristo Rey!" The commander was so furious that he pulled out his pistol and shot Blessed José Sanchez del Rio in the head.

We do have a list of priests and laymen who have been beatified and canonized from this persecution in Mexico.

St. Agustín Caloca 
St. Atilano Cruz Alvarado 
St. Cristobal Magallanes 
St. David Galván Bermudes 
St. David Roldán Lara 
St. David Uribe Velasco 
St. Jenaro Sánchez Delgadillo 
St. Jesús Méndez Montoya 
St. José Isabel Flores Varela 
St. José Maria Robles Hurtado (Priest)* 
St. Jóven Salvador Lara Puente 
St. Julio Álvarez Mendoza 
St. Justino Orona Madrigal 
St. Luis Batiz Sáinz (Priest)* 
St. Manuel Morales 
St. Margarito Flores García 
St. Mateo Correa Magallanes (Priest)* 
St. Miguel De La Mora (Priest)* 
St. Pedro de Jesús Maldonado Lucero (Priest)* 
St. Pedro Esqueda Ramírez 
St. Rodrigo Aguilar Alemán (Priest)* 
St. Román Adame Rosales 
St. Sabas Reyes Salazar 
St. Tranquilino Ubiarco 
St. Toribio Romo González 
Blessed Anacleto González Flores 
Blessed Andrés Solá Molist (Priest)* 
Blessed Ángel Darío Acosta Zurita (Priest) 
Blessed Ezequiel Huerta Gutiérrez 
Blessed Jorge Vargas González 
Blessed José Sánchez del Río 
Blessed José Trinidad Rangel Montaño (Priest) * 
Blessed Leonardo Pérez Larios * 
Blessed Luis Magaña Servín 
Blessed Luis Padilla Gómez 
Blessed Miguel Gómez Loza 
Blessed Mateo Elías del Socorro Nieves (Priest) 
Blessed Miguel Agustin Pro Juárez (Priest) 
Blessed Ramón Vargas González 
Blessed Salvador Huerta Gutiérrez 

* Indicates member of Knights of Columbus

Our site will have documentation on the lives of each one along with the new book “For Greater Glory: The True Story of the Cristiada.” It’s the official companion book to the film published in English and Spanish by Ignatius Press. As an expert on the Cristero War, I was honored to write it. The book also includes a foreword by Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles and an introduction by Eduardo Verástegui, and there is an essay by Knights of Columbus Supreme Knight Carl Anderson.  

ZENIT: The Cristero War is a page mostly lost to history, even for young Mexicans, who don't learn about it in school. How is this possible? 

Quezada: As recently as the 1980s it was difficult to find a single book that mentioned anything substantive about the Cristiada. If it was mentioned, it usually was no more than a single sentence in President Calles’ biography. School systems did not include the Cristiada as part of its history so that future generations would soon lose any knowledge of it.

But even today, it is important to note a crucial difference between the official state narrative and the Catholic understanding of events. The Mexican government portrays the Cristiada as a rebellion because the Cristeros “rebelled” against the enforcement of the Calles Law. But rebellion is hardly a fitting way to describe an attempt to restore customs in place for centuries before the Mexican Revolution. Catholics see the Cristiada as a response, albeit a violent one, to unjust persecution because Catholics were persecuted by unjust laws that inhibited their religious freedom.  

There is more freedom of the press today, and a large volume of untold stories about the Cristiada — testimonies and images that were illegal to print or publish for many years — are finally emerging. There are literally thousands of testimonies coming to light that reveal an inspiring history that has been hidden for decades under a dark shadow of fear and denial.


On the Net:
“For Greater Glory: The True Story of Cristiada”:

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San Margarito Flores Garcia Sacerdote e martire

Taxco, Messico, 22 febbraio 1899 - Tulimán, Messico, 12 novembre 1927

Nacque a Taxco, Guerrero (Diocesi di Chilapa) il 22 febbraio 1899. Parroco di Atenango del Río, Guerrero (Diocesi di Chilapa). I tre anni trascorsi nel ministero furono sufficienti per conoscere la sua indole sacerdotale. Il Vicario generale della Diocesi lo nominò vicario con funzioni di parroco di Atenango del Rio, Guerrero. Il Padre Margarito si mise all'opera. Fu scoperto, identificato come sacerdote, quando stava per giungere alla meta; fu imprigionato e condotto a Tulimán, Guerrero, luogo in cui venne dato l'ordine di fucilarlo. Il Padre Margarito chiese il permesso di pregare, si inginocchiò per qualche secondo, baciò il suolo e quindi, in piedi, attese gli spari che gli distrussero la testa e lo unirono per sempre a Cristo Sacerdote, il giorno 12 novembre 1927.

Emblema: Palma

Martirologio Romano: Nella città di Tulimán in Messico, san Margherito Flores, sacerdote e martire, che, durante la grande persecuzione contro la Chiesa, fu arrestato per il suo sacerdozio e coronato da glorioso martirio con la fucilazione. 

Soltanto perché non potevano permettersi il lusso di pagargli la scuola, si erano opposti con tanta fermezza all’idea che uno dei loro figli entrasse in seminario. Per il resto, Germano Flores e Mercede García erano buoni e ferventi cristiani e non si sarebbero mai permessi di ostacolare una vocazione sacerdotale. Siamo in Messico, nel 1915, e precisamente a Taxco, Guerrero, nella diocesi di Chilapa, dove vivere non è sempre facile, specie in quel periodo e per far andare avanti una famiglia servono anche le braccia di un ragazzo di 14 anni. Che è però talmente convinto che quella del sacerdozio sia la sua strada, da mettersi in quattro per trovare da sé, presso sacerdoti e amici, i benefattori di cui ha bisogno per andare in seminario di Chilapa, dove studia senza farsi pregare; tutti gli riconoscono intelligenza e capacità non comuni e lui collabora per quanto può al suo mantenimento, tagliando barba e capelli a questo e a quello. Intraprendente e determinato, dunque, il ragazzino, che nel poco tempo libero si dedica anche con profitto alla scultura e alla pittura. Il 5 aprile 1924 è ordinato sacerdote e lo mandano subito ad esercitare il ministero nella parrocchia di Chilpancingo, dove rimane fino allo scoppio, nel 1926, della persecuzione religiosa. In quell’anno dovrebbe trasferirsi a Tecalpulco, ma la situazione è così incandescente e i preti sono così braccati e perseguitati che deve darsi alla macchia, vivendo per parecchio tempo tra i monti, patendo la fame e la sete fino a quando riesce a trovare rifugio nella casa paterna. Qui si ferma il meno possibile, cosciente dei pericoli che fa correre anche ai suoi familiari, e nei primi giorni del 1927 raggiunge Città del Messico, qualificandosi come medico e frequentando anche per alcuni mesi l’Accademia, dove perfeziona le sue inclinazioni artistiche. Ma nella capitale non resta con le mani in mano: oltre ad esercitare clandestinamente il suo ministero, insieme alla Lega Nazionale per la Difesa della Religione cerca di pacificare gli animi nel clima torrido della persecuzione religiosa che si sta respirando in tutto il Messico. Così facendo, finisce per esporsi troppo e con un bel gruppetto della Lega a giugno finisce in cella e vi resta per oltre un mese, tutto trascorso in preghiera e nel sostegno spirituale degli altri detenuti. A tirarlo fuori dal carcere ci pensa una famiglia amica, ma Padre Margarito ormai ha il presentimento che la sua sorte è definitivamente segnata. Ne parla apertamente, con serenità e fermezza, raddoppiando le preghiere e le occasioni per esercitare bene il suo ministero, consapevole che il tempo a sua disposizione si fa sempre più breve. E’ sicuramente questo il pensiero che lo accompagna in quel giorno di ottobre, quando celebra l’ultima messa nella capitale, poche ore prima della sua partenza per tornare in diocesi. È sicuramente la sua messa più sofferta, celebrata per ottenere il dono della pacificazione del suo amato Messico, durante la quale offre la propria vita perché non venga più sparso altro sangue innocente. Arrivato fortunosamente a Chilapa, non ha neppure il tempo di disfare le valigie che il vicario generale subito lo destina come parroco di Atenango del Rio. Si rimette in viaggio per raggiungere la sua nuova parrocchia , ma qui trova ad accoglierlo le truppe federali. Spogliato e lasciato con i soli indumenti intimi, picchiato e malmenato, viene trascinato fino a Tuliman a piedi nudi, circondato come un malfattore dalle guardie, che gli negano anche il conforto di un goccio d’acqua. Qui lo attende un processo sommario , al termine del quale è scontata la sua condanna a morte per il semplice motivo di essere un prete. Sceglie come luogo per essere fucilato il muro posteriore della chiesa e vi si dirige con assoluta serenità. È il 12 novembre 1927. Come ultimo desiderio chiede il tempo necessario per una breve preghiera e per baciare la sua amata terra messicana; il gesto non deve passare inosservato al plotone d’esecuzione, se una delle guardie gli si avvicina per sussurrargli una richiesta di perdono. “Non solo il mio perdono, ma anche la mia benedizione per tutti voi”: sono le ultime parole, prima che una raffica di pallottole gli fracassino il cranio. Padre Margarito Flores Garcia, il parroco massacrato a 28 anni a causa del suo ministero, è stato beatificato nel 1992 e proclamato santo il 21 maggio 2006.

Autore: Gianpiero Pettiti

San Margarito Flores, sacerdote
Nació en Taxco el 22 de febrero de 1899. A los 12 años, cuando concluyó sus estudios primarios se dedicó con fervor al servicio de Dios y visitaba diariamente el santísimo sacramento. Por las dificultades económicas de la familia se puso a trabajar la tierra. A los 14 años manifestó sus deseos de ingresar al seminario y al poco tiempo lo hizo.
Fue ordenado sacerdote en el seminario de Chilapa en 1924, y al poco tiempo se le nombró catedrático del seminario. Era un hombre de carácter serio, atento y amable con todos, siempre dispuesto a servir con humildad. Durante la persecución contra los cristianos se refugió en la ciudad de México y asistió a la academia de San Carlos.
Al poco tiempo fue capturado y cuando salió libre decidió regresar a Chilapa. A su arribo fue apresado y conducido a Tulimán semidesnudo, descalzo, atado a la caballería y bajo un sol agobiante. El 12 de noviembre de 1927 el capitán Manzo ordenó su ejecución.
Fue beatificado el 22 de noviembre de 1992 y canonizado el 21 de mayo del 2000 por el Santo Padre Juan Pablo II.

Nació en Taxco, Gro. (Diócesis de Chilapa), el 22 de febrero del 1899. Párroco de Atenango del Río, Gro., (Diócesis de Chilapa). Tres años de ministerio fueron suficientes para conocer la entrega sacerdotal del Padre Margarito. Se encontraba fuera de la Diócesis a causa de la persecución, cuando supo de la muerte heroica del Sr. Cura David Uribe, exclamó: «Me hierve el alma, yo también me voy a dar la vida por Cristo; voy a pedir permiso al Superior y también voy a emprender el vuelo al martirio». El Vicario general de la Diócesis le nombró vicario con funciones de párroco de Atenango del Rio, Gro. El Padre Margarito se puso luego en camino. Fue descubierto como sacerdote al llegar a su destino; apresado y conducido a Tulimán, Gro., donde se dio la orden de fusilarlo. El Padre Margarito pidió permiso para orar, se arrodilló unos momentos, besó el suelo y luego, de pie, recibió las balas que le destrozaron la cabeza y le unieron para siempre a Cristo Sacerdote, el 12 de noviembre de 1927.