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5 Spanish Civil War martyrs beatified

April 25, 2016

Describing persecution as the “daily bread of the Church,” Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, presided at the Mass of beatification of Father Valentín Palencia (1871-1937) and four companions on April 23.

The Mass took place in Burgos Cathedral in Sprain.

Father Palencia, a diocesan priest, devoted his priesthood to ministry to poor children. After the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, he administered the sacraments secretly.

On January 15, 1937, Father Palencia and four young laymen who collaborated in his apostolate-- Donato Rodríguez García, Germán García García, Zacarías Cuesta Campo and Emilio Huidobro Corrales-- were shot to death in Ruiloba out of hatred for the faith.

During his April 24 Regina Caeli address, Pope Francis paid tribute to the martyrs.

Noting that the martyrs were “killed for their faith during the Spanish Civil War,” the Pope said that “we praise the Lord for these courageous witnesses and beseech their intercession to free the world from all violence.”

 
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