Orozco y Jiménez, Francisco

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Mexican archbishop and educator; b. Zamora, Michoacán, Nov. 19, 1864; d. Guadalajara, Feb. 18, 1936. After entering the seminary in Mexico, he was sent to the South American College in Rome, an institution for which he had great affection and whose benefactor he remained all his life. He studied in the Gregorian University, from which he received the licentiate in theology and the doctorate in philosophy. Years later he earned another doctorate in the newly restored Pontifical University in Mexico. On his return from Rome he became professor and then vice rector of the College of Arts in Zamora, held the same post in the Clerical College of Tacuba, and again in the Seminary of Mexico. Consecrated bishop of Chiapas (1902), he devoted himself to caring for the hitherto neglected flock. Among his achievements in the diocese were the following: he founded five schools for girls and one for boys staffed with professors trained in Europe; he brought electricity to San Cristóbal de las Casas; and he helped to pacify the warring Chamulas and to lead them to a peaceful Christian existence. He became archbishop of Guadalajara in 1913, just as the years of persecution and social and political upheaval were beginning in Mexico. By 1914 he had to go into hiding, living disguised for many months, as he again had to do under President Calles in 1925. Three times he was forced into exile because of the desperate conditions. Nevertheless, Archbishop Orozco managed to increase the number of schools and bring about social improvements among his flock. Orozco y Jiménez was a great admirer of the Society of Jesus and helped it in many ways, even with financial aid during the years of persecution and exile. To him the Jesuits owed the construction of the Colegio of Ysleta where their novices and scholastics were trained from 1925 to 1951. The archbishop favored giving the Jesuits charge of the projected Montezuma Seminary. He was responsible for the publishing of various collections of documents on the history of the Church in Chiapas and Guadalajara and even paid personally for the publication of important historical works.

Bibliography: j. i. dÁvila garibi, Serie cronológica de los prelados que a través de cuatro siglos ha tenido la antigua diócesis, hoy arquidiócesis de Guadalajara, 15481948 (Mexico City 1948); Labor científica y literaria del Excmo y Rvo. Sr. Dr. y Mtr.D. Francisco Orozco y Jiménez (Guadalajara 1937). e. valverde tÉllez, Bio-bibliografía eclesiástica mexicana, 18211943, 3 v. (Mexico City 1949).

[d. olmedo]