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Thursday 29 July |
Saint of the Day: Sts Martha, Mary and Lazarus of Bethany
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Saint of the Day: Bl. Victor Chumillas-Fernández

Franciscan Killed During the Spanish Civil War

Franciscan Priest and Martyr (1902-1936)

His life

+ Victor was born in Olmeda del Rey, Spain, and was inspired to enter the Franciscans by reading the story of the Martyrs of Japan.

+ He entered the Order of Friars Minor in 1917 and professed his vows the following year. He was ordained a priest in 1925.

+ Victor served as teacher and rector of several Franciscan seminaries and was named Guardian (superior) of the friary of Consuegra in Madrid in 1931. In that community, he also served as the manager, editor, and publisher of a magazine and later founded a journal called Comet, dedicated to the sciences, art, and religion.

+ A noted preacher and catechist, he was also faithful in his service to Franciscan Tertiaries and Poor Clare nuns, as well as a choir director, organist, and poet.

+ Evicted from his community at the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, he and other friars were later arrested and imprisoned. Blessed Victor was shot to death with 19 other friars on August 16, 1936; they was beatified in 2007.

+ Blessed Victor and his companions were among 498 martyrs of the Spanish Civil War beatified together in 2007. In total, more than 6,800 bishops, priests, deacons, and religious men and women, as well as hundreds of lay people, were martyred during the “Red Terror” of the Spanish Civil War. To date, 1,815 of these have been beatified and 11 have been canonized.

For Prayer and Reflection

The Martyrs who are inscribed in the Roll of the Blesseds today behaved as good Christians, and when the moment came, they did not hesitate to offer their lives with the cry on their lips: ‘Long live Jesus Christ!.”—Cardinal José Saraiva Martins at the Beatification of Blessed Victor and other Martyrs of the Spanish Civil War


Almighty and merciful God, who brought your Martyr blessed Victor to overcome the torments of his passion, grant that we, who celebrate the day of his triumph, may remain invincible under your protection against the snares of the enemy. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

(from The Roman Missal: Common of Martyrs—For One Martyr)

Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.

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