CAUSA Narcisus Esténaga Echevarría et X Socii

The Cause concerns 11 “presumed Martyrs”: Narcisus Estenaga (Bishop), 4 priests, 5 Brothers of the Christian Schools and 1 layman.

Santa Cruz de Mudela is a small town in the province of Ciudad Real, where in 1936 there was a school run by the Brothers of the Christian Schools. Five religious formed the community:

  1. Hno. Agapito León (Remigio Angel Olalla Aldea), Direttore, 33  years old
  2. Hno. Dámaso Luis (Antolín Martínez Martínez), 21  years old    
  3. Hno. Josafat Roque (Urbano Corral González), 37  years old
  4. Hno. Julio Alfonso (Valeriano Ruiz Peral), 25  years old
  5. Hno. Ladislao Luis (Isidoro Muñoz Antolín), 20  years old

On 22nd July 1936, a group of militiamen surrounded the school in an uproar, invaded it and arrested the five Brothers. They took them to the village “cheka” where they stayed for five days. Then, together with other detainees, they took them to another prison where they stayed until 19 August. They persisted in humiliating and making the Brothers suffer. Several times they made them sweep the public square, amidst insults and harassment. They forced them to go on military marches chanting Marxist slogans and on more than one occasion slapped them.

Despite their sufferings, they showed courage during their imprisonment and it was they who supported and encouraged the other prisoners, priests and militant Catholics of the place. While they were imprisoned, a benefactress of the College, Doña Cecilia Ramiro, took charge of their food, which she brought to the prison every day. On 18 August, the feast of St Agapitos, the Director’s name day, she brought him sweets which he distributed to everyone, including the prisoners. But the next day, 19 August 1936, a group of militiamen came to the prison and took the Brothers and 25 other prisoners, including five priests. They loaded them onto a truck and at midnight murdered them in the cemetery of Valdepeñas, then threw them all into a mass grave.

Iter of the Cause
02/07/1959: Beginning of the Diocesan Process super martyrio
20/11/1992: Decree of validity of the Diocesan Process
12/12/1992: Rapporteur: P. Ambrogio Eszer, O.P.
13/01/1995: presentation of the Positio  
16/03/2004: Congress of Theologians
21/06/2005: Plenary of Cardinals and Bishops
28/04/2006: Decree super martyrio
28/10/2007: Beatification (together with others for a total of 498 Martyrs)

Liturgical memorial: November 6