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  1. My discovery started when coming across a tiny "Capilla" on Calle Morelos in Joco where an old photograph of who later I'd find out was Padre Toribio Romo Gonzalez hangs, a murdered priest of the Cristero War, beatified by the Catholic church. Shortly after I saw the movie "For Greater Glory" with Andy Garcia which is loosely based on actual events. Being a student of history, I was shocked that I'd never heard or read of this religious war that took place between 1926 and 1929 in this region where we all reside. For those of you unfamiliar with this incredible history, the Cristero War commenced when President Calles attempted to outlaw Catholicism here in Mexico! An insane prospect to begin with in a country almost exclusively Catholic. Churches were closed, priest expelled or murdered and all religious ceremonies outlawed with penalty of death attached. No more marriages, baptisms nor Masses. The people were denied their right to religious freedom and as common among these brave souls inhabiting this noble country, they rose up and took arms against the Calles government. The war was bloody, costing the lives of around 250,000 people. The war would not have been possible without the woman of Mexico that smuggled arms and ammunition to their men, nursed their injuries and kept them fed at great sacrifice and loss to themselves. The rebellion forced Calles to resign and the government to withdraw the "Calles Laws", restoring the right of religious freedom and worship to the populace. Among the sacrificed were Padre Toribio Romo Gonzalez, priest of the Tequila church who's photo hangs in the chapel in Joco and a 13 year old captured Cristero fighter named Jose Sanchez del Rio. The latter occurred just across the lake from us in the town of Sahuayo. The boy was tortured and offered to have his life spared if he would only deny God and the Cristeros. This brave boy answered repeatedly: "Que vive Cristo Rey"! He would not deny his God in the face of unbelievable torture, having had the souls of his feet pealed off to try to encourage him to reject his beliefs. Having failed to convince him, they put a bullet in his young head. He is interred in the Parroquia de Santiago Apostol in Sahuayo just across our beautiful lake. Both these individuals along with another 35 or so have in recent times been canonized by the Catholic church, joining the ranks of their Saints. I encourage anyone interested, to investigate this incredible history. It has moved me deeply even as a non-catholic and makes me proud to walk on the land they did. This land rich and vibrating with noble history!
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