Manríquez y Zárate, José de Jesús

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Mexican bishop and militant defender of the Church;b. León, Guanajuato, Nov. 7, 1884; d. Mexico City, June 28, 1951. He studied at the seminary of León and the South American College in Rome. Ordained on Oct. 28, 1907, he obtained his doctorate in theology, Canon Law, and philosophy, and returned to Mexico on June 19, 1909. He was vicar of the sacristy and prefect of the seminary of León (190911). As pastor of Guanajuato (191222), he founded nine parochial schools, a secondary school for boys and one for girls, the school of higher studies for men, the Ketteler Workers' Circle, and the League for Catholic Social Action (which supplied clothing for the poor, loan and saving facilities, medical service, and libraries). He was nominated first bishop of Huejutla on Dec. 11, 1922. After being consecrated on Feb. 4, 1923, he organized his diocese, evangelized 60,000 Indians, and multiplied schools and Catholic social works, showing intransigence toward the Revolution. A fearless defender of the Church, he challenged the actions of President Calles (March 10, 1926), who imprisoned him for one year and exiled him to the United States (April 24, 1927). There he was an apologist for Mexican Catholic armed defense and put an end to the revolutionary "Arreglos" (June 21, 1929), which, suppressing all Catholic counterrevolutionary resistance, consolidated the power of the revolutionary group. Bishop Manríquez y Zárate called them a "shameful modus vivendi." This abrogation gave life to the crusade (1934), which was stimulated by the prelate, whom José Vasconcelos called "the standard-bearer" of the persecuted faith, de facto leader of the militant Church. Manríquez y Zárate had to resign his bishopric on July 6, 1939. Gravely ill, he was permitted to return to Mexico, March 8, 1944, after 17 years in exile. He regained his health and preached all over the country (194449). On Nov. 7, 1949, he was named vicar-general of the archbishopric of Mexico City, representing it in Rome (1950) at the declaration of the dogma of the Assumption. He made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land on his way back to Mexico City. When he died, thousands of Catholics venerated his body and attended the burial, at which they sang the hymn to Christ the King and waved the flag of the National League for Defense of Liberty. In 1963 his remains were transferred to the national monument to Christ the King. He left 23 pastoral letters; the books En la hora de suprema angustia, Jesucristo a través de las edades, Luchando contra la bestia, and El socialismo; and a great many sermons, addresses, statements, articles, prefaces, and personal letters. He preached a strong, bold Catholicism as the only way of religious survival and insisted that it should be combined with a love of the traditions of Mexico.

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Manríquez y Zárate, José de Jesús

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