43 Saints' Causes Decrees, 40 From 20th Century

2 Teenagers and 26 More Spanish Martyrs Recognized

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VATICAN CITY, JULY 1, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Set to join 498 of their peers beatified in 2007 at the largest beatification ceremony in Church history, now another 26 victims of religious persecution in Spain during the 1930s have been recognized as martyrs.

Benedict XVI today authorized their decrees of martyrdom, as well as that of five others, along with five decrees recognizing miracles, and six decrees declaring heroic virtue. All but three of the decrees regard causes for people who died in the 20th century.

One of those recognized to have gained a miracle through his intercession is already beatified, meaning canonization is just a step away. This is Blessed Luigi Guanella (1842-1915), an Italian priest who founded two orders, the Servants of Charity and the Daughters of St. Mary of Providence.

The other four who gained miracles through their intercession — all Italians, and all from the 20th century — are recognized as Servants of God. One died at the age of 18:

— Giustino Maria Russolillo (1891-1955), Italian priest, pastor of Pianura and founder of the Society for Divine Vocations

— Maria Serafina of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (1849-1911) (born Clotilde Micheli), Italian founder of the Sisters of the Angels

— Alfonsa Clerici (1860-1930), Italian religious of the Sisters of the Most Precious Blood of Monza

— Cecilia Eusepi (1910-1928), Italian member of the Third Order of the Servants of Mary.


The Spanish martyrs recognized by the Pope’s decree are Servants of God:

— José María Ruiz Cano, Jesús Aníbal Gómez Gómez, Tomás Cordero Cordero, and 13 companions of the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary, killed in 1936

— Carmelo María Moyano and nine companions of the Carmelites, also killed in 1936.
The other martyrs recognized are Servants of God:
— Janos Scheffler (1887-1952), bishop of Satu Mare, Romania.

— Johannes Prassek and two companions, diocesan priests killed at Hamburg, Germany, on Nov. 10, 1943

— Marguerite Rutan, professed sister of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, born in 1736 and killed at Dax, France, on April 9, 1794.

Heroic virtues

Heroic virtues were recognized for the following six people, now Servants of God, and including one teenager:

— Basilio Martinelli (1872-1962), Italian professed priest of the Congregation of the Schools of Charity

— María Antonia de San José (1730-1799) (born María Antonia de Paz y Figueroa), Argentinean founder of the Beaterio of Buenos Aires

— Maria (1880-1940) (born Casimira Kaupas), Lithuanian founder of the Sisters of St. Casimir
— Maria Luisa (1799-1847) (born Gertrude Prosperi), Italian abbess of the convent of the Order of St. Benedict of Trevi

— María Teresa (1927-1946) (born María del Carmen Albarracín), Spanish professed religious of the Mary Immaculate Claretian Missionary Sisters

— Maria Plautilla (1913-1947) (born Lucia Cavallo), Italian professed religious of the Little Missionary Sisters of Charity.

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