Thirteen Mexicans who died during a Catholic uprising in the late 1920s were beatified on Sunday. Guadalajara's 60,000-seat soccer stadium, was filled to capacity for the ceremony which was overseen by Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins. Many thousands more ringed the stadium and listened from the outside, or tuned in to radio and television broadcasts. The new Blesseds are: Anacleto Gonzalez Flores and seven companions, Jose Trinidad Rangel, Andres Sola Molist, Leonardo Perez, Dario Acosta Zurita, and a fourteen-year-old boy Jose Sanchez del Rio. Their images were arranged around a towering cross in the stadium. Pope Benedict XVI appeared on video screens, reading a message in Spanish. He said of the martyrs: "They are a permanent example for us an encouragement to give concrete testimony of our own faith in today's society." The 1917 constitution that grew out of the Mexican revolution tightened restrictions on the church, banning public Masses and religious garb. It capped a century of setbacks for the church, which had enjoyed a government-imposed monopoly on faith for most of the 300 years following Spain's conquest of Mexico in 1521. Source: VIS
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