MEXICAN HISTORY: The movie, For Greater Glory, is based on a true story of the Cristiada in Mexico and will be in theaters June 1, 2012. It’s a tragic story of how Mexican Catholics fought for their freedom of religion in Mexico. The assault on religious freedom began when Mexico adopted a Constitution in 1917 which contained strong anticlerical language, setting the stage for organized resistance against the government.
MEXICO’S PRESIDENT in 1924 was Plutarco Elias Calles. The Calles administration aggressively attacked the teachings of the Catholic Church. In 1926 a shootout occurred between 400 armed Catholics, who shut themselves in the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, in Guadalajara, in Jalisco state, against federal troops. The altercation left 18 dead and 40 injured.
A DAY after the Guadalajara shootout, federal troops stormed a Catholic church in Sahuayo, in the State of Michoacan, where the pastor and his vicar died in the violence. Federal troops also raided the home of St. Luis Batiz Sainz, a priest and member of the Knights of Columbus, killing him with three members of the Mexican Association of Catholic Youth.
A YEAR LATER, the formal Cristero rebellion began with the release of “A la Nacion” [To the Nation], a document written by Rene Capistran Garza, a leader of the Mexican Association of Catholic Youth. It decried the attack on religious freedom and urged organized resistance. The Cristero fighters received the support of Catholic women who formed the Feminine Brigades of St. Joan of Arc. A parish priest and member of the Knights of Columbus, St. Rodrigo Aguilar Aleman, was tortured and martyred by Mexican troops that same year.
YOUNG Jose Sanchez del Rio convinces his mother in 1927 to let him join the Cristeros. The youngster served as a flag bearer. On Feb. 10, 1928, Jose was martyred after refusing to renounce his faith. In 1929, The Cristero fighters and the government reached an agreement to end the conflict. The government agreed to permit public worship and the Catholic bishops agreed to cease calls for the elimination of constitutional language against religious freedom.
BLESSED Pope John Paul II beatified 25 Cristero martyrs in 1992 and in 2000 he canonized all 25 as saints. On Nov. 20, 2005 on Christ the King Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI beatified another group of 13 Cristero martyrs, including Blessed Jose Sanchez del Rio.
“FOR GREATER GLORY” stars Andy Garcia as Enrique Gorostieta Velarde, Eva Longoria as Tulita, Ruben Blades as President Plutarco Elias Calles, Peter O’Toole as Father Christopher, Eduardo Verastegui as Blessed Anacleto Gonzalez Flores and Mauricio Kuri as Blessed Jose Sanchez de Rio; and actors Oscar Isaac, Santiago Cabrera and actress Catalina Sandino Moreno [Academy Award Nominee]. Shooting of the movie was done on historic locations throughout Mexico.
“EVERY person of faith should draw courage from the tragically heroic witness of the Cristeros. Their sacrifice reminds us that unless we learn from history, we risk repeating it. Besides being an important movie, it is extremely well done,” said Father Andrew Small, National Director, Pontifical Mission Societies.
FOR MORE information on ticket purchases—including getting posters, flyers and other promotional materials—contact The Maximus Group at 1-877-263-1263.
A TEN COUNT: Champion boxer Johnny Tapia, a Mexican-American, died Sunday, May 27, 2012 at his Albuquerque home. It was reported his death did not appear suspicious. Tapia 5 feet 6 inches, was a five-time boxing champion who had a turbulent career. His chaotic life included jail-time, struggles with mental illness, suicide attempts and being declared clinically dead five times as a result of drug overdoses. He was 45.
TAPIA WON the WBA bantamweight title, IBF and WBO junior bantam eight titles and the IBF featherweight belt. Tapia was married to Teresa Tapia in 1994 and had two children where he lived with in Albuquerque, NM. Tapia had many tattoos, which were prominent when he was fighting. One of them said Mi Vida Loca ("My Crazy Life"), the nickname he adopted. He wrote an autobiography by that title.
IT’S TRADITONAL in the sport of boxing to honor the memory of a deceased boxer by giving him a ten count of the boxing bell to signify that the boxer is out. The fans stand in silence as the bell is solemnly struck slowly ten times. Tapia, will always be remembered a great warrior, a Champion and one of a kind.
HEALTH FAIR: A mini Health Fair is scheduled for Saturday, June 23, 2012 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Little Village Community Council, 3610 W. 26th St. in partnership with St. Anthony Hospital. The services that will be provided are:
- Blood pressure
- Diabetes screening
- Podiatry/foot screening
- Community Wellness Program [CWP]
- Senior Wellness Information
- Asthma screening
ST. ANTHONY Hospital, 2875 W. 19th St. is a faith based non-profit community teaching hospital founded in 1896 that services the Little Village community. For over 100 years, St. Anthony physicians and staff have provided medical care, social services and community outreach to Chicago's near southwest side communities.
SUMMERFEST: St. Anthony is sponsoring its Sixth Annual Family Summerfest on Saturday June 9, 2012 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Families are invited to the Summerfest to play carnival games, enjoy a variety of local entertainment and sample the menus of neighborhood restaurants. The event is free to the general public and each family who register will receive a free back pack for each child in the family.
FOR MORE information contact Rita Esquiliano, Director of Community Relations, at 773/484-4396, or email resquili@SAHChicago.org anyone who wants to participate in the event with a table or tent, give Rita a call.
|Senior Master Sgt. Pedro Ortiz, Technical Sgt. Jose Pereda,|
Perez Jr. Post Commander Joe Ramirez, Senior Airman
Julian Torres, Airman First Class Anthony Ochoa
TWO WORLD War II veterans Tony Gonzalez [Navy] and Benito Morales [Army] were also present. Bill Luna, Post Commander of the Dr. Hector P. Garcia AMVETS gave recognition to the three Medal of Honor recipients honored in the mural at the memorial plaza: Manuel Perez Jr., WW II; Roy Benavidez, Vietnam and Rudy Hernandez, Korea. “This is the only military memorial plaza in Chicago and sacred ground so that we can pay homage to our deceased military heroes,” said Luna.
SPECIAL GUEST were activist Victor Vela from Milwaukee, Wisc. Vela is an Army Vietnam veteran; Abundio Zaragoza, Superintendent of Veteran Assistance Commission of Cook County; Frank Corona, American G.I. Forum of South Chicago and Dominic Delgado, represented the 173rd Airborne Association. A moment of silence was held for Jose Lupe Martinez, a Korean war veteran who recently passed away. After the playing of the taps at the ceremony, the Manuel Perez Jr. American Post Commander Joe Ramirez invited all the veterans, family members and guests for coffee, cake and tamales at their Post headquarters.