|Jose Sanchez del Rio|
Among the heroes of the time was Fr. Miguel Pro who was captured and executed for doing nothing more than bringing the Mass to the underground Church. He ended his life before a firing squad with arms stretched out in the cruciform position exclaiming, "Viva Cristo Rey!" Long live Christ the King.
Today the pope canonized one of the youngest Cristero martyrs, Jose Sanchez del Rio, only thirteen-years-old when he joined the Cristeros and only fifteen when he gave his life for Christ after cruel torture. Jose's two older brothers left to fight with the Cristeros, and the youngster begged his mother to let him go as well. She refused saying he was too young, but finally relented after he told her, “Mamá, it has never been easier to earn Heaven as now.” He expected to die fighting for restoration of the Catholic faith in Mexico.
Jose was a flag bearer for the Cristeros and when, during a battle, the general's horse was shot out from under him, the boy insisted the general take his horse and escape. That's when he was taken prisoner and jailed in St. James Church which had been converted into a prison and stable. Incensed that the Mexican officer was using the church as a coop for his horses and prize fighting game cocks, the boy strangled them. When confronted, he responded, "The house of God is for prayer, not to shelter animals."
|Jose at his First Communion|
After repeated attempts to force Jose to apostasize, they flayed the soles of his feet and made him walk barefoot to his own makeshift grave where they shot him.
This child's life and death may prefigure what will happen here in the United States. If Hillary Clinton wins we will face the most godless government of my lifetime where bad Catholics who repudiate the doctrines of the faith are described as "devout" and good Catholics who fight for and defend the faith are labeled hate-mongers, misogynists, and intolerant homophobes. We are truly living in the time when men call good evil and evil good!
Pray to be faithful during the time of trial. Whatever happens, whoever is elected president in November, we are living in a time of little faith, perverted values, and tremendous evil. Let us all pray for the grace to be faithful to Christ and especially for the gift of final perseverance. If things continue to deteriorate, we may well face active persecution that invites us to join Jose in saying, "it has never been easier to earn Heaven as now."
Viva Cristo Rey!