Blessed Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio

A friend recently sent me this moving account about Blessed Jose Luis along with an invitation to pray through his intercession: 

jose-sanchez-del-rio10th February is the feastday of Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio, the 14 year old Mexican boy martyr, who died heroically for the Catholic Faith. He pleaded with his mother to allow him to join the “Cristeros” in their fight for the freedom of the Catholic Church and of Mexico. At that time, the early decades of the 1900s, Mexico was governed by a freemasonic tyranny, that was mercilessly persecuting the Church and Her faithful, bishops, priests and laity, and executing many of them, Blessed Miguel Pro the Jesuit priest being one such martyr.  “Viva Cristo Rey” –  Long live Christ the King –  was the cry on the lips of those valiant servants of God and His Holy Catholic Church, by which they professed and witnessed to their blessed faith in the generous shedding of their lifes’ blood.

One such, was young Jose Luis, begging his mother’s permission to publicly defend his Divine King. “In order to go to Heaven, we must go to war…will you deny me the chance to go to Heaven, and so soon?” said he, rending her heart with the fear of losing him. Having received her permission Jose went off to join the “Cristeros” in their heroic struggle against the oppressive regime of Plutarco Calles, the Masonic President. Soon Jose was captured and imprisoned, and found guilty of being an enemy of the state. During this time of his incarceration, he was heard praying the rosary and singing sacred songs. He did not falter, nor lose faith, but longed for his desired martyrdom; to die for his beloved Christ the King.  Four days before his martyr’s death he wrote to his mother “I am resigned to the Will of God. I die happy because I die beside Our Lord. Do not afflict yourselves because of my death, since to die for God gives me joy.”  Echoes here of St. Thomas More; “I die the King’s good servant; but God’s first.”

On his way to the site of execution, the soldiers were brutal, beating him and cutting the soles of his feet with razor-sharp knives. Moved by the greatest charity he told his torturers “I forgive you since we are all Christians. We’ll see each other in heaven. I want you all to repent.” In an attempt to get him to apostatise, they tempted him to save his life; “Say ‘Death to Cristo Rey’ and you can live” said they, to which he responded with a loud cry of “Viva Cristo Rey.”   Enraged, the soldiers beat him yet more and then shot him several times, delivering a massive blow to his head. His blessed soul winged its way to Heaven and into the arms of Cristo Rey.

He is a great example and model for all of us, especially the youth; one who they can look to in their search for a spiritual ideal that nurtures a courageous faith, with a total commitment to Christ the King and His Holy Catholic Church. Let us pray to Blessed Jose Luis, for the courage to live and die for Christ our King, even if it be a “dry” martyrdom, in this age of disbelief, unbelief, and false belief. Generations, afraid and reluctant to commit themselves to anything other than the false gods of material pleasure, are lost in the wilderness of Godlessness. “When a man ceases to believe in God, he will believe anything.”  wisely observed  G. K. Chesterton. And so we see the world wallowing in self-indulgence pursuing the delights and excitements of every type of god, anything but the True God.

In view of the dreadful state of the whole world today, you are earnestly requested to pray a fervent novena begging this steadfast belief from God, through Blessed Jose Luis, for ourselves and especially the youth and the uncommitted, using one’s own words, commencing from 1st to 9th February, in preparation for celebrating the birthday into Heaven on 10th February of Jose Luis, the valiant Servant of Cristo Rey; on which day we salute and honour him, asking his prayers for our Holy Church, our youth, our families and our nations.  VIVA CRISTO REY !!!

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39 Responses to Blessed Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio

  1. Toad says:

    Ah, the nostalgia, the nostalgia! It will be the death of Toad who fondly remembers being dandled on his dear old, Mosleyite, God-fearing, devout Catholic father’s knee, while Dad gravely informed him that the blame for all the world’s manifest ills could be laid entirely at the door, (or doors) of “…the Jews and Masons.”

    So, to read the stirring account of a plucky, small boy who decided to join the “Christeros” and kill as many Freemasons as humanly possible, struck a very sympathetic chord indeed with Toad.
    What the story fails to say is whether young Jose Luis succeeded in his laudable ambitions of masonic mayhem before managing to get killed himself, which was his real ambition, it seems.

    Not that it matters whether he did or not, as the intent was plainly there; along with a snap of the smartly-uniformed lad proudly brandishing his shiny gun.

    The only difficulty Toad can see is how to reconcile the little fellow’s behaviour with Christ’s admonition to, “…Love you enemies,” and, when struck, to “…Turn the other cheek.”
    It might appear superficially from that that Jesus was advocating complete submission in the face of evil, as practiced by early Christian martyrs back in Roman times.
    But that attitude seems redundant nowadays, as the Benedict-blessed boy is surely headed for sainthood.

    Can anyone clarify this apparent paradox?

    Toad was also going to suggest that the whole story has a faint but decided whiff of Fascism about it, an aroma clearly by no means unpleasing to some devotees of CP&S.
    But, on reflection, he will withdraw the word “whiff.”
    And replace it with “stink.”


  2. johnkonnor72 says:

    …”The doctrine (or principle) of double effect is often invoked to explain the permissibility of an action that causes a serious harm, such as the death of a human being, as a side effect of promoting some good end”…as humanoid beings (not toads) with a free will and a committment to act justly towards each other it is expected that we should afford each other within the precincts of prudence and charityabsolute concepts…to praise God our creator or worship any way we see fit without transgressing the freedoms of others…even if that means not to worship at all…well this basic human right was violated..and so this boy defended a basic unalieanable humanoid right to worship….” A person may licitly perform an action that he foresees will produce a good effect and a bad effect provided that four conditions are verified at one and the same time:
    1.that the action in itself from its very object be good or at least indifferent;
    2.that the good effect and not the evil effect be intended;
    3.that the good effect be not produced by means of the evil effect;
    4.that there be a proportionately grave reason for permitting the evil effect:”……e.g.”4.To kill a person whom you know to be plotting to kill you would be impermissible because it would be a case of intentional killing; however, to strike in self-defense against an aggressor is permissible, even if one foresees that the blow by which one defends oneself will be fatal”…


  3. Toad says:

    “1.that the action in itself from its very object be good or at least indifferent;”

    So, John, what do you think the object of Jose Luis’s action – going off to kill Freemasons – was intended to be?

    Then you say..
    “To kill a person whom you know to be plotting to kill you would be impermissible…”
    But how could you ever “know” such a thing? You could, at best, only be confident that your information was accurate, and that was the person’s plan.


  4. johnkonnor72 says:

    …In the first instance if you read Luke 3:14 Jesus did not tell the soldiers to put down their arms he exhorted them to be Just and honest…in law their is the concept of intent with premeditation and also reasonable doubt…as i said no where in the Gospel does Jesus condemn defense against an agressor….this young boy’s’intention was to protect his freedom to pursue liberty and happiness…in a court of law he is innocent until proven guilty…however since as you say all things being relative their can be no justice since all boils down to subjective arbitration…under such a regime the utilitarian aspect of what accounts for a good and proper judgement can never be estimated since each decision must be weighed against every possible infinite outcome again a self refuting proposal….in toads court all are guilty until proven innocent however all things being relative this can never happen since by relative standards all are both guilty and innocent at the same time….


  5. johnkonnor72 says:

    …Jesus Christ was not prohibiting self defense by Christians in a manner permitted by law. He also said, “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace.” (Luke 11:21 RSV)…as well in référence to the concept of turning the other cheek in context this would mean not to simply stand idly and accept evil as it is meted out but to offer the other cheek mystically speaking not the left cheek but however more reproof through clear doctrine when we are confornted by those who doubt our veracity and pure intentions ..never seek revenge however do not stand idle adopt an interior demeanour of repose ..he goes on to say go the extra mile and remain calm in adversity…always praying for those who persecute us…anyway i am rambling falling into the old snare i suppose… 😉


  6. johnkonnor72 says:

    ….Jerome: Mystically interpreted; When we are smitten on the right cheek, He said not, offer to him thy left, but “the other;” for the righteous has not a left. That is, if a heretic has smitten us in disputation, and would wound us in a right hand doctrine, let him be met with another testimony from Scripture…..


  7. golden chersonnese says:

    It would appear, dear Toad, that Jose Luis was beatified by reason of being a martyr, not for being a little Catholic soldier or anti-Masonic. As we saw, his martyrdom was an event that can be distinguished from his fighting. Rather like Joan of Arc,


  8. Toad says:

    Very well reminded, Godlen. Toad recalls God personally providing Joan with a sword, handed down direct from Heaven, to kill the English with.
    All very odd.
    Particularly as he’s an Englishman himself..


  9. Toad says:

    “…He said not offer to him thy left, but “the other;” for the righteous has not a left.”

    You might be onto something there, John. Toad is left-handed.

    Could explain why he’s not righteous.
    Maybe it’s all genes, rather than morals.


  10. golden chersonnese says:

    God is an Englishman or Toad, Toad?

    I see my last sentence was supernaturally truncated. What I intended was “rather like Joan of Arc, though she is not officially designated as a martyr.”


  11. golden chersonnese says:

    Toad, they say Joan of Arc was left-handed too, make of that what you will. Did God give her a left-handed sword, would you know?


  12. kathleen says:

    An Englishman with an Irish name! 😉

    Toad, I want to refer to your first comment where once again you infer that those who defend themselves from formidable enemies in any other way than a meek passivism, have ‘fascist’ leanings. This is just plainly not true. Self defence is absolutely legitimate and permissable.

    Fascism, on the other hand, and its counterpart, Communism, are extreme ideologies that have nothing to do with the Catholic Faith. There have been many encyclicals, documents and pastoral letters denouncing them both by great Popes of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

    Whereas I do concede that there have been baptised Catholics within the Church who have been Fascists – and those who have been Communists too! – this cannot be blamed on the whole Catholic Church, who does not teach and hold their cruel and inhuman mindsets. These people are just some of the Church’s rebellious children, sinners,…. and there are those who have repented and been reconciled to Her afterwards. So please, don’t tar the whole Church with the same brush! It is what many are trying to do nowadays.

    Blessed Jose Luis is indeed a courageous young martyr (as Golden has said), with a real love and passion for Christ and His Church. He did not hate those he fought against – he prayed for their salvation – but he could not stand by and watch the Bride of Christ be attacked, and its members massacred, without doing his bit. He is a true role model saint for young people everywhere.


  13. golden chersonnese says:

    Have they proved left-handedness is genetic, Toad, just like having red hair? I thought not. Even though the “gay marriage” crowd want it to be, for obvious reasons.


  14. golden chersonnese says:

    Hello Kathleen, I see that there are relatively few military saints anyhow and they are mostly from the early Church. I don’t know of any of them who were sainted due to the exceptional anti-Christian qualities of their foes, but rather, like St Sebastian, for instance, because of their martyrdom.


  15. Eccles agrees with Toad that Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio did wrong in standing up to a tyrannical regime that was murdering Catholic priests and laity. In Eccles’s eyes this smacks of fascism on the part of Jose Luis, because Franco was also against the murder of priests. In the system of logic adopted by Eccles and Toad, that proves the point.

    Eccles thinks that the posts of Toad are very valuable, and disagrees strongly with anyone who would describe Toad as a Catholic-hating troll. Eccles thinks that he and Toad have a lot in common, Eccles being a person who likes to write in the 3rd person so that it is less obvious that his main obsession in life is talking about himself. In addition, Eccles has had a lot of experience of writing for publication, but is still able to put together some of the clunkiest sentences ever written in the English language.

    LIke Toad, Eccles sees his mission as being to test Catholicism by putting the most sordid and unpleasant constructions on the motives of anyone who is regarded as a good and saintly person by Catholics. This is because Eccles also struggles with his faith: on the occasions when he attends church he has the same problem as Toad, for the priest and people will insist on humbling themselves before God and admitting their faults, which is something Eccles never does. Last time Eccles attended a Mass the whole service went past without a single mention about how Eccles is such a good chap. Eccles is sure that Toad has a similar problem.


  16. JabbaPapa says:

    Toad recalls God personally providing Joan with a sword, handed down direct from Heaven, to kill the English with

    Toad is obviously unhappy that the only weapon he has ever been provided with is a keyboard, to smite people with thunderbolts of sarcasm and cynicism.


  17. JessicaHof says:

    Jessica thought that God decided these things, but had not realised that Toad needed consulting too.


  18. Frere Rabit says:

    The place where Joan of Arc’s sword was revealed can be seen in the church of St Catherine de Fierbois and it is directly on the pilgrim route from Paris to Santiago de Compostela.


  19. golden chersonnese says:

    I often think that Toad’s questions and doubts are ones that we have all probably struggled with at some time in our lives. Many of them we have found rational responses for while others we can’t quite figure out all at once. Somehow our utter certainty of God’s love for us, gained from so much experience of him, gives us such strong hope and faith. And that is quite reasonable.


  20. johnkonnor72 says:

    ..I believe eccles is correct…however io must add that toads syllogisms and or comments and logical expose are so poorly induced contain so many straw men, non sequiturs and slippery slopes that one has to watch where one treads…u must conclude that he does this purposefully for anyone with a tad of discretion would weigh his words much more metiiculously…he is a master of twisting the context so that at the end you have quite a different animal… :-)…but then it is my fault..falling in. The old snare again..m.mmmm…just an old hillibilly…however saying one who disdains the killing of priests is a fascist since franco who was a fascists disdained killing priests..this contains a formal presumptuos logical fallacy …poor induction a fortiori…including an ad hominem namely the attack on the character of the boy….it is the same as saying franco who was a fascist loved turnips the boy loved turnips and so the boy was a fascist..false equivocation maybe?????


  21. Toad says:

    Poor old Toad.

    “Toad is obviously unhappy that the only weapon he has ever been provided with is a keyboard, to smite people with thunderbolts of sarcasm and cynicism.”

    The keyboard is mightier than the sword, Jabba? I doubt it.
    Try cutting off someone’s head with an Apple Mac. Whatever that is.

    In fact, one of the multitude of things Toad is incredibly happy about is that, at age 72, he has never – so far at least – been forced to serve his counrty in a military capacity.
    Never had to march in step, brandishing a gun, saluting and shouting “Hurrah!”
    Something of a miracle.
    He would have been very bad at taking orders, even if only ordered to kill Freemasons.

    Takes all sorts, though.
    Jabba is obviously more belligerent.

    Damp squibs, more like.

    By the way John, Toad can reliably inform you that Dear Old Catholic Uncle Francisco hated turnips, and issued orders that any turnip captured behind Republican lines should be stood up against the cemetery wall and shot.
    With a priest present, to perform the last rites, ( slicing, salting, peppering and annointing with olive oil) of course.

    And Franco did have a good many priests killed (mainly Basques, to be sure, but still) and had a special prison set aside for them as well.

    In Zamora. Which was generally full.


  22. Toad says:

    “Toad, they say Joan of Arc was left-handed too, make of that what you will. Did God give her a left-handed sword, would you know?”

    There are left-handed corkscrews, left-handed potato-peelers, Godlen, but, as far as I know, (which is not very far at all) there are no left-handed swords. In which respect, they are very like cricket bats, of which God, being an Englishman, doubtless has a ready and infinite supply in heaven.
    Perhaps He drops them to suitable chaps – at silly-mid-on, or square leg.

    Who knows?
    God moves in mysterious, etc. etc…

    (But what on earth has this nonsense about cricket bats got to do with pedophile priests, and minute Mexican martyrs?)


  23. Toad says:

    God strikes back.
    Can’t blame Him, really.


  24. johnkonnor72 says:

    …Hahaha ok…sad about the priests :-(…thanks for the info…anyway if anyone has time or the inclination please pray for me thanks :-)…God bless u all…..i will pray for u all….


  25. Toad says:

    Toad will certainly pray for you, John.
    Whatever the reason. And hope nothing too serious is wrong.


  26. Frere Rabit says:

    I have carefully examined all the evidence and Generalissimo Francisco Franco Bahamonde has no known association with turnips apart from his brief encounter with the MI6 agents who flew him from the Canary Islands to start the revolt in 1936, in a Dragon Rapide chartered from Croydon airport. Some of the same public school educated turnips spent the next few years railing on about the benefits of “non intervention”. Turnips indeed.


  27. Frere Rabit says:

    As a follow up to Toad’s point about the priests who died under the Franco regime, it should be remembered that the recent creation of the Catholic Martyrs of the Spanish Civil War offended many families of murdered priests. All the priests murdered by the nationalists were excluded from this honour of official martyr status. It is a great shame that the Catholic Church lost the opportunity to help the healing process still taking place, after all these decades, and simply reminded many people of the old divide. Martyrdom is only martyrdom for the priests shot by one political side. That is a disgrace.


  28. Toad says:

    “Self defence is absolutely legitimate and permissable.” Did the early Christians believe this, Kathleen as they were thrown to the lions, (or possibly to the rabbits)? Presumably not.
    Shaw makes some interesting observations about this in “Androcles.”
    Have attitudes to agression in the Catholic Church radically hardened over two thousand years, or not?

    Anyway, “Eccles” is probably right. Toad really ought not to be wasting his, and everyone else’s, time on here. He should be deaded. Perhaps he has been.

    But he’s like a dipsomaniac – just one more little snort, then that’s it: I quit. No more. But then…


  29. JabbaPapa says:

    Did the early Christians believe this, Kathleen as they were thrown to the lions, (or possibly to the rabbits)? Presumably not.

    Presumably so — the notion that they did not isn’t coherent with basic human psychology, toad.


  30. golden chersonnese says:

    Rabit, all of these would surely have been true martyrs. The folk at the Holy See surely would have had time to get that right. They died because of their witness to the Faith, not because of any ideology. If they did die because of some political ideology, they are not martyrs for the Faith, but for some ideology, which ideologists are quite fond of doing.


  31. kathleen says:

    Toad and Rabit:
    Considering only 16 Basque priests were murdered by the Nationalists (16 too many, all the same), and that there were a total of 6,832 clerical victims (which included 13 bishops, 4,172 diocesan priests and seminarians, 2,364 monks and friars, and 283 nuns) of the Red Terror sweeping Spain at the time of the Spanish Civil War…. disregard for the multiple clerical victims of the Nationalist side, while showing shock and disgust for the Basque clerical victims on the other, is wonky reasoning at best.

    Everyone knows that terrible crimes of cruelty and evil were committed during this conflict on both sides, Republican and Nationalist……. (and afterwards on the vanquished by the victors.) No one comes out from this civil war untarnished, except the thousands of innocent victims who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.


  32. Frere Rabit says:

    Having just watched a historical documentary about the colosseum and the enormous daily bloodbath that took place there for the entertainment of thousands, I am quite frankly sickened and reminded all too much of the sickness of sin that lies deep in the heart of man. Our squabbles over the numbers of dead on one side or the other miss the point. One tortured human being is one too many.


  33. johnkonnor72 says:

    …True toad…no matter what u say or do..u can lollygag around catholic sites trying to pull the old pusillanimous bone on catholics all u like..or playing the proverbial young boy poking at a hornets nest with a pointed stick…however God uses your infirmities to draw u closer to him…smart guy that God…the medeival painters had it right with the playing chess with death motif….u can deconstruct the followers and call them fools due to frailty but we all must stand for something…if we aim at tearing down all the constructions then all we have is a game of chess with death…its God or futility either way …i go with pascals wager …if you follow the tenements u are a better person for it never mind the hypocrits those are everywhere…plus u get eternity as an added bonus…if u dont u get a game of chess with death…


  34. Toad says:

    I must protest your depicting CP&S as a “hornets nest ” John.
    I see it more as a belfry.

    Must disagree on Blaize as well. Smart guy, that (like God, a bit) – and did say at least one thing Toad absolutely agrees with: “Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would merely amount to another form of madness.”..but his wager is a crock, I’m willing to bet.

    However, I love your comments. Despite the fact that they are largely incomprehensible to me. In fact because of the fact that they are, etc. etc.

    I enjoy that. I suppose it’s a bit like the way I view Catholicism itself.

    It’s neither possible, nor necessary, to understand everything to enjoy it.
    Spoils the fun, rather.


  35. Maria says:

    Ever since I saw the movie For Greater Glory, I have been praying to Blessed Jose Maria Sanchez del Rio for his intercession for God’s answer to my prayer. God answered my prayer on Feb 11, Feast of Our Lady Of Lourdes, and a day after the feast day of Blessed Sanchez. May his canonization take place soon. Viva Cristo Rey!


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  37. Funny bunny says:

    I love how he gave up his life for God


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