Tuesday, April 4, 2017


In his native Land
This saint to be fits in with our Lenten theme of Eucharistic Adoration.

SERVANT of GOD FATHER ALOYSIUS ELLACURIA was born in 1905 in the farm town of Yurre (Basque Country), Spain.  He was the oldest son and the third of nine children.  He entered the Claretian Missionaries as a postulant at the age 11, and was ordained in 1929.  Father Aloysius first visited the United States in 1931 and began his priestly ministry of teaching and spiritual direction at Claretian seminaries in California, Illinois, and Portugal.  In addition, he held pastorates both in Arizona and in Texas.

His ministry was directed to helping others:  healing, spiritual counseling, and blessing the sick and dying.  In his nearly 52 years of priesthood, he had a profound effect on all who sought his help. It was Father Aloysius’ charismatic personality that affected those who knew him and that has drawn hundreds to his grave in the burial grounds for Claretian priests in San Gabriel, CA, which adjoins the famous mission church, founded in 1771.  Father Aloysius’ spot near the burial gate is always adorned with flowers and religious mementos.

Before his death April 6, 1981, Father Aloysius founded the Missionaries of Fátima, now under the diocese of Ciudad Obregón in the northern Mexican state of Sonora.  The mission headquarters is in Álamos, the northernmost colonial city in Mexico.

 In 1970, Father Aloysius formed the idea of beginning a monastery of priests and brothers. This inspiration was during a pilgrimage which he led to Fátima, Portugal.  At first he did not conceive this project as a new congregation, but simply as a house of prayer.  It was only in 1972 that his Major Superior in Rome suggested that Father use the original Fátima group to actually found a new Order.  So after two years living in Fatima (1971–73) with his original group of novices, he returned to Los Angeles, and continued to attract many vocations, selecting some of them for the new Order, which is popularly known as the Missionaries of Fátima. 

 Its official title is  Missionaries of Perpetual Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament and Perpetual Veneration of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  As this title indicates, they are Missionaries, and the aim is both Eucharistic and Marian, to save all souls by the spiritual power that ever flows from these two sources.  It is amazing how many new orders are dedicating themselves to adoration of the Eucharistic Christ.

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