Journalists Want a Colleague Beatified

Petition on Behalf of Manuel Lozano Garrido

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MADRID, Spain, AUG. 27, 2002 ( More than 200 leading Spanish journalists and writers have petitioned John Paul II to beatify one of their own, Manuel Lozano Garrido.

«Lolo,» as his friends called him, could end up the first lay journalist so honored. He spent 28 years in a wheelchair and was blind for the last decade of his life.

«We sincerely believe that Manuel Lozano Garrido, ‘Lolo,’ could be for us, Catholic journalists and writers, and for the whole Church, one of the most luminous and contemporary models of life of our time,» explained the petition by the media professionals.

«It would be a wonderful grace of God if he might soon be able to become the first canonized lay journalist, in order to be able to entrust ourselves to his intercession, and, in hope, we entrust and request this of God and of Your Holiness,» the journalists and writers said.

Rafael Higueras, promoter of the cause of beatification, reported that the process is in an advanced phase.

Manuel Lozano Garrido was born in Linares in 1920. He began as a journalist in religious media such as the newspaper Ya and he also worked in the Associated Press.

He became gravely ill in 1942 with spondylitis — inflammation of the vertebrae — which left him an invalid. His fellow journalists gave him a wheelchair as a gift.

Despite his sufferings, he dictated nine books to his sister Lucy and his friends. He founded the magazine Sinai for the sick.

He died on Nov. 3, 1971. His testament is revealing of his life: «Friends: We shall not see each other for a time. I hurry to my meeting with the Father. I thank you for being with me at my death, as you were with me in my wheelchair. I continue to be yours, and I renew our appointment in Happiness. Take care of Lucy. And remember that all is grace.»

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