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May 18, 2006


Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will celebrate a Mass in honor of the Priest Martyrs of Mexico, canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2000. The relics of the six Knights of Columbus priests will be displayed in Philadelphia, part of the relics' pilgrimage to several cities in the United States. The schedule to visit the relics:

Saturday, June 3, 2006
9 a.m. - 8 p.m.: Viewing of relics of the martyrs
10 a.m.: Mass celebrated by Cardinal Rigali
St. Thomas Aquinas Church
17th and Morris Streets

Sunday, June 4, 2006
7:30 a.m. - until conclusion of Mass: Viewing of relics of the martyrs
5:30 p.m. Mass in Spanish
17th and Morris Streets

The relics and painting of the martyrs will be on display throughout the Masses on Saturday and Sunday. There will be veneration throughout the day in the form of prayers, praying the rosary and private reflection time. The six priests martyred for their faith by the Mexican government during the religious persecution in Mexico in the 1920s were: Pedro de Jesus Maldonado Lucero, Miguel de la Mora de la Mora, Jose Maria Robles Hurtado, Luis Batiz Sainz, Rodrigo Aguilar Alemón and Mateo Correa Magallanes.

The pilgrimage of the relics began in Mexico City in September 2005, to mark the centennial of the Knights of Columbus in Mexico. Relics have long been a part of Catholic devotional practice. Since the days of the Apostles, Christians have preserved and honored the physical remains of men and women recognized as saints.

For more information, please contact the Office of the Vicar for Hispanic Catholics, 215-667-2820.

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Matthew Gambino
Associate Director, Office for Communications

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