Father Barron Reviews For Greater Glory

Monday, September 10, AD 2012

The Blu Ray and DVD releases of For Greater Glory are coming out on September 11, 2012For Greater Glory tells the story of the Cristeros who bravely fought for religious freedom and the Church in the 1920s in Mexico.  I heartily recommend this film.  The above video is Father Robert Barron’s insightful review of the film.   (I believe he is too sanguine as to the effectiveness of purely non-violent movements in the face of regimes who don’t care how many people they kill, but that is a debate for another day.)   The below video has additional remarks by Father Barron on the film.  Go here for my review of the film.

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12 Responses to Father Barron Reviews For Greater Glory

  • Thank you, Donald! I watched Fr. Barron’s first video above, but it’s now time to shower to go to “Neutrons ‘R Us” and be productive. But I just wanted to say that while I am among the first to advocate that our Second Amendment protests the First, maybe there is something to Jesus’ rebuke against the sons of thunder for wanting to call down an air strike against those unrepentant villages of yore. True – not the same situation as the Cristeros, but victory is through the Cross and always has been. I will still, however, keep my mini-14 in good working order lest, Heaven forbid, we ourselves in America face our own Plutarco Elias Calles. God bless!

  • Opps – protects, NOT protests! Darn fat fingers on iPad keyboard!

  • Christ was never interested in politics Paul, or any of the more mundane matters that must concern us. The truth is that Christianity has been effectively exterminated by force in many regions of the planet throughout history. The examples cited by Father Barron, Gandhi and King, would have been completely useless in the face of totalitarian regimes. One can imagine the short shrift that Gandhi would have received if the Nazis had ultimately conquered the British Empire for example. Traditionally the Church has understood both the need for priests and soldiers and I stand by that traditional wisdom.

    “And the Pope has cast his arms abroad for agony and loss,

    And called the kings of Christendom for swords about the Cross.”

  • “One can imagine the short shrift that Gandhi would have received if the Nazis had ultimately conquered the British Empire for example.”

    Sounds like you may have read Harry Turtledove’s “The Last Article.”

    One of the grimmer short stories from his oeuvre.

  • Thought so. 🙂

    Great, insightful alternate history that rings wholly true.

    Sure, the tyrant can repent in the face of non-violence, but he has to accept the legitimacy of that tactic in the first place. He has to have a conscience, and it has to be a lot like yours.

    Speaking of grim Turtledove ruminations, I just re-read “Ready for the Fatherland” last night–my wife found it in storage. A helpful reminder that one of the greatest assets to the Allied cause in wartime was Hitler’s armchair generalship.

  • Gandhi’s advice to the Jews in Germany prior to World War 2:

    “Can the Jews resist this organized and shameless persecution? Is there a way to preserve their self-respect, and not to feel helpless, neglected and forlorn? I submit there is. No person who has faith in a living God need feel helpless or forlorn. Jehovah of the Jews is a God more personal than the God of the Christians, the Musalmans or the Hindus, though, as a matter of fact in essence, He is common to all the one without a second and beyond description. But as the Jews attribute personality to God and believe that He rules every action of theirs, they ought not to feel helpless. If I were a Jew and were born in Germany and earned my livelihood there, I would claim Germany as my home even as the tallest gentile German may, and challenge him to shoot me or cast me in the dungeon; I would refuse to be expelled or to submit to discriminating treatment . And for doing this, I should not wait for the fellow Jews to join me in civil resistance but would have confidence that in the end the rest are bound to follow my example. If one Jew or all the Jews were to accept the prescription here offered, he or they cannot be worse off than now. And suffering voluntarily undergone will bring them an inner strength and joy which no number of resolutions of sympathy passed in the world outside Germany can. Indeed, even if Britain, France and America were to declare hostilities against Germany, they can bring no inner joy, no inner strength. The calculated violence of Hitler may even result in a general massacre of the Jews by way of his first answer to the declaration of such hostilities. But if the Jewish mind could be prepared for voluntary suffering, even the massacre I have imagined could be turned into a day of thanksgiving and joy that Jehovah had wrought deliverance of the race even at the hands of the tyrant. For to the god fearing, death has no terror. It is a joyful sleep to be followed by a waking that would be all the more refreshing for the long sleep.”

    Gandhi’s belief in non-violence admitted no failure, even if all the people attempting it were massacred. I assume the Jews found this letter cold comfort indeed, as the more perceptive among them no doubt realized that a massacre on an unbelievable scale was where the Nazi anti-Semitic policies were heading.

  • Toleration, passive aggressive-resistance and non-violent resistance.

    Being sued and penalized for practicing my freedom of religion is not toleration. Government is the servant of the sovereign person. Toleration of freedom by the government is the enslavement of the sovereign person. Freedom comes from God, our “Creator”.

    Government is constituted by its constituents to celebrate the freedom of its constituents, to protect, to guard and to do combat for the freedom of its constituents. Toleration of the freedom of religion by the individuals who constitute government is totalitarianism. Non-violent resistance is labeled “passive aggressive resistance” by a government that is no longer government, but dictatorship. The dictatorship says: “I will let you…have some of your rational, immortal soul”. The dictatorship says: “You did not build that”.

    Government says: “God built that”.

    Paul W. Primavera: May your “fat fingers” continue to comment.

    Donald McClarey: “Traditionally the Church has understood both the need for priests and soldiers and I stand by that traditional wisdom.” “You shall not stand idly by while your neighbor’s life is in jeopardy.”

  • I think Fr. Barron’s priase of those who didn’t directluy participate in the fighting and writing off the combatants as merely “well intentioned” rather silly when you consider the fat that the young boy who has since been beatified was a comabatant and those who didn’t directly participate did what they did in support of the Crsteros combatants.

  • The Crusades were ordered by the reining Pope. The Crusades were not a non violent response to the Muslims. The Church gave the world the just war concept. So much for non violence.

  • In non-violence, the purpose of which is to instruct people with the reality of the human being’s immortal soul, Ghandi said: the scripture: “an eye for an eye”, will make the whole world blind. The law was written to save some of the eyes in the world. When Jesus told Peter to put down the sword, Peter was already an ordained priest, since the Last Supper, just as Father Barron is an ordained priest, who belongs to the church, first and to the people second. Lay people serve as armed forces and may, God forbid, die by the sword. Non-violence does not repudiate armed force. Armed force repudiates violence.

For Greater Glory: See the Movie and Read the Books

Thursday, June 14, AD 2012

On June 15, a book tied in with the For Greater Glory movie will be released by Ignatius Press.  Bearing the same name as the movie, it is a history of the Cristero Movement.  The author was recently interviewed by Zenit:

 

ZENIT: Neither a film nor a ZENIT interview is sufficient to explain all the historical intricacies of such a complex epoch. Still, could you give us a brief overview of the Cristero War?

 

Quezada: The Cristero War is a chapter in Mexico’s history in the 1920s, when thousands of Catholics answered this crucial question [of religious freedom] at the cost of their very lives. President Plutarco Calles launched a direct attack on the Catholic Church using articles from Mexico’s Constitution, which created this uprising and counter-revolution against the Mexican government during that time. The original rebellion was set off by the persecution of Roman Catholics and a ban on their public religious practices.

 

There are two important dates to point out here.

 

The persecution began on Aug. 1, 1926, when the government re-enacted the penal code and forced the closure of all Catholic churches throughout the entire country with its new anticlerical laws. However, the first coordinated uprising for religious freedom did not occur until Jan. 1, 1927.

 

It was not until mid June 1929 when the truce was officially signed, bringing an end to the Cristero War.

 

ZENIT: Is For Greater Glory a historically accurate film?

 

Quezada: Apart from some “artistic license” the film is essentially accurate.

 

ZENIT: The movie alludes to some discrepancy between the Vatican’s position regarding the religious persecution, and that of the Cristero fighters. Could you explain this?

 

Quezada: When the oppression was about to begin, the Vatican granted permission — requested by the Mexican bishops — to cease any Catholic religious services in order to avoid confrontations. Additionally, the Holy See wrote letters to the government requesting they abolish the Calles Law. The government ignored each request. As the war intensified, Rome continued to have direct communications with President Calles to ask for leniency. Not only were Vatican officials [in Mexico] dismissed, but diplomatic relations were broken off by the government. Lastly, Pope Pius XI wrote an encyclical letter to the clergy and the faithful of Mexico to give them courage and hope during this persecution. There was really not much else the Holy See could do. On Nov. 18, 1926, the Pope sent the encyclical letter Iniquis Afflictisque (On the Persecution of the Church in Mexico) to offer prayers and encouragement during this difficult time.

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5 Responses to For Greater Glory: See the Movie and Read the Books

  • We should not think that what happened in Mexico cannot happen here in these United States. If Obama wins in November, then I doubt he will fear to follow in the path blazed by Plutaco Elias Calles. I understand that you, Donald, consider his victory unlikely and I wish I had your optimism.

  • Considering that Romney is now leading Obama in blue state Wisconsin Paul according to the latest Rasmussen poll, I am beginning to think that my optimism is too pessimistic. I suspect that a landslide is shaping up against the South Side Messiah.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/06/romney-takes-the-lead-in-wisconsin.php

  • No. It won’t be the same here and now.

    Calles was a mason.

    Obama was raised (formative years) in Indonesia among communists, hippies, and Muslims.

    I will buy the book.

    Prepare, as best you can, for the Obama economic apocalypse.

  • T Shaw, as though having Wall street investors bet more money than exists in the world is not already economic failure, You know that Wall street investors in total bet something like a trillion dollars? and so now know one can pay of the debt which is impossible to pay because there is not enough money to pay for it, but adding more money would just lower the currency. Obama will be more like economic, cultural, and American apocalypse.

  • The good thing about communist governments is that they crash so easily so people don’t have to deal with evil that has structural integrity, which never seems to be the case because there is always something wrong and corosive in every evil.

Just Seen It Reviews For Greater Glory

Tuesday, June 12, AD 2012

The hard working film mavens of Just Seen It give For Greater Glory an enthusiatic review in the video above.  It is one of the more perceptive reviews of the film that I have seen.  The two reviewers come at the film from a purely secular viewpoint and had little if any knowledge of the Cristero War prior to viewing it.  The message of religious freedom that the film conveys is obviously the most important part of the film, but even leaving that aside the movie is a masterpiece of the filmmaker’s craft.

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9 Responses to Just Seen It Reviews For Greater Glory

  • I saw the film and enjoyed it. The scene where Jose made his own via dolorosa brought to mind scenes from The Passion of the Christ for me. Overall this review is favorable but I’m missing her point about the last 10 minute. Any help?

  • She is a non-Catholic Michael, and perhaps not overly sympathetic to the Church judging from that remark. That of course makes her fairly enthusiastic endorsement of the movie as a film notable.

  • Her concern was that it “developed a religious agenda.”

    Good thing secular movies are agenda free.

  • “developed a religious agenda.”

    I heard what she said but I’m having a hard time relating her opinion to what I saw. Apparently her co-review did as well. But I’m looking at things with Catholic filters so I wondered if anyone might have a better sense of what she was getting at. Sorry, don’t mean to beat a dead horse.

    @ Donald – Agree that her non-Catholic POV does add power to her endorsement.

    My non-Catholic mother-in-law saw the film before we mentioned anything about it. I found her take on the General’s character interesting. Her view, as an Evangelical, was that General Gorostieta was a believer but didn’t like “all of the rules” of the Catholic Church. I must have gone to the bathroom during that scene.

  • SPOILER ALERT! – Re: the “agenda” in the last 10 minutes, just a guess, but there was the dream sequence with the flashbacks to several key lines and Enrique awakes and realizes they are about to be attacked, yet he first wants Fr. Vega to hear his confession instead of leaping into action… Maybe that’s the Catholic agenda? As to the “all the rules” observation, there was the earlier related scene where Fr. Vega is distributing Communion and Gen. Gorostieta is in line, and the priest says, “You need to confess,” and Enrique says, “Doesn’t He already know?”

  • “Fr. Vega is distributing Communion and Gen. Gorostieta is in line, and the priest says, “You need to confess,” and Enrique says, “Doesn’t He already know?”” Yes, He already knows and Jesus gave us the Sacrament of Confession to make sure that we know.

  • “Good thing secular movies are agenda free.” You are kidding? Right?

  • The reviewers did not say anything about Calles or the communist agenda or being surprised by the speed/ force of the crackdown on people of faith– that crackkdown was stunning, and it stuns me that the reviewers don’t even express anything about it.
    They also didn’t say anything about the ambassador or the offer of planes, or interest in oil rights– in fact, they seemed pretty unfazed by some history presented in the movie.
    Even if the lady isn’t catholic, just as a PERSON I think she would have been a bit fazed about human atrocity instead of bristling about Catholic political incorrectness (apparently thinking the movie was promoting the Faith at the end of the movie)/ She comes off as too shallow to review a movie so deep.

  • Of course this secular reviewer would not say anything about what the Communists did. ‘”Bad people” doing bad things’ is the film industry’s bread and butter. It’s pretty normal for people to be abused badly during the course of a film. People facing it with blatant faith, as well as great ingenuity and bravery is almost unheard of.

    Secondly, this disruption of her comfort level is the footprints of the Holy Spirit through an unformed conscience. It is no wonder that she’s not clear about her discomfort. Sin is inured to sin, and greatly disturbed by holiness. God willing, these images of faith will stay with her, whereas the endlessly repeating horrors and engineered shock value will fade away into nothing.

Ed Morrissey Reviews For Greater Glory

Sunday, June 10, AD 2012

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air saw a rough cut of For Greater Glory back in March, so I was curious to read his review, and here it is:

 

 

For Greater Glory tells the story of the Mexican government’s attempt to stamp out the Catholic Church under President Calles (played by Ruben Blades), and the uprising that followed, a civil war that killed 90,000 people. Calles attempted to enforce the anti-clerical laws put into Mexico’s 1917 socialist Constitution by demanding the expulsion of foreign priests, banning public demonstrations of faith (including the wearing of clerical garb), and making criticism of the government by priests punishable by five years in prison. A boycott organized by the Catholic Church prompted Calles to get even tougher, and open war broke out. Enrique Gorostieta (Andy Garcia), a general who had fought for the winning side in the revolution, chose to lead the Cristero rebellion, and the film focuses mainly on Gorostieta, two of his lieutenants, and a young boy named Jose Sanchez del Rio, who was later beatified by the Catholic Church.

Back in March, I was fortunate enough to see a rough cut of the film, and wrote a semi-official review at the time (from which I borrowed the synopsis above) with the caveat that I would wait to see the theatrical release.  Last night, my wife and I saw it in its limited Twin Cities release, and the final cut has significantly improved the narrative flow of the film. One of the few areas of concern I had from the rough cut was the difficulty in following the constant shifting between subplots in the first half of the film, and some ambiguity about the intent in some scenes.  Those problems were resolved nicely, with additional footage in some areas and smoother transitions throughout.

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6 Responses to Ed Morrissey Reviews For Greater Glory

  • Thank God for the brave intelligent people who invested themselves and their money into making this film, said by some film critic to be “too Catholic”. It has not been shown in our home area, but we did get to go see it Thursday. I hope it will get wider distribution or somehow lots of people will see it. I encourage my non catholic friends to see it– for freedom of religion– any Christian religion–not just Catholic.
    This movie is hard to talk about. overwhelming.
    I ask the young martyr Jose Sanches del Rio to pray for us. Like the actor in the second clip, I hope I have to courage to truly live faith.
    I would like to learn a lot more about the U.S.response, Ambassador Morrow.

  • Please go see this movie. Show your support with your dollars. ONLY by going to see it and making a statement with your money will other movies like this one will be made.

  • Does anyone know where this movie is being shown? I live in Western Wi and have not been able to find anyplace that is showing it. I noticed the reviewer said in the “limited showing in the Twin Cities area”. Is that Msp/St. Paul Mn? Thanks

  • (Guest comment from Don’s wife Cathy:) Go to the movie’s website: forgreaterglory.com ; click the “Find a Theater” link at the top of the page, and be prepared to travel further than you normally would to see a new movie, because of the “limited release” thing. (For example, Don, the kids and I drove 50 miles each way to a theater we’d never been to before to see this, because it was the closest downstate Illinois theater that was showing the movie.)

  • Jeane if you are in western Wisconsin and if they show it in the twin cities than shouldn’t have too much trouble depending on how close you are. When I lived in Minneapolis people would smuggle bottlerockets over the border so crossing the border shouldn’t be a problem.

  • Interesting that this comes to light. My father, Wm A Cline, of Wharton Texas was born in 1910, and recenlty died in 2012. He told me he was friends with Shelby Longoria. He said, back in his college days, he, Shelby and other friends were having an evening at the Cadillac Bar in Nuevo Laredo. Shelby’s dad comes in and says “there is going to be a raid on the town tonight and I need your help. Shelby and friends helped his dad empty the vaults of the local bank and load the money into pickup trucks and bring it to the US. Dad said when the revolutionaires appared and robbed the bank, the bank was empty of cash. “That,” he said, “was the last raid of that revolution.”

    Robert Cline

Letter from Granddaughter of General Gorostieta

Wednesday, June 6, AD 2012

 

 

Here is a translation of a letter from a granddaughter of  General Gorostieta, who is portrayed by Andy Garcia in For Greater Glory, to Andy Garica.  Go here to read the letter in the original Spanish.   Hattip to commenter Rogelio Núñez Ruiz. Translation is by my hard working and deeply appreciated better half Cathy:

[Opening commentary by Fernando Banuelos, Editorial Director of the Cine 3 film news website:]

Letter from Maria Teresa Perez Gorostieta to Andy Garcia about Cristiada [AKA For Greater Glory ]

This is an emotive letter sent by Maria Teresa Perez Gorostieta, granddaughter of General Gorostieta, to Andy Garcia for his role in Cristiada.  Although I’m not a fan of Mexican films, especially Mexican history films in another language and with non-Mexican actors, I believe that this film falls in the “top-priority must-see” category of films, just to see what they say about us, and to see how faithful this adaptation is to what history tells us.

[Maria Teresa Perez Gorostieta’s letter follows:]

Mr. Garcia:

I saw the film last week, and I enjoyed the character of my grandfather, even though I don’t share the legend that he was an unbeliever and converted in the Movement; it seems to me that [portraying him that way] brings him to people in a better way than if they had portrayed him as being too religious.

I congratulate you for having accepted the role on behalf of my mother, who unfortunately died 4 days before they finished filming it; she was happy that it would be you who would interpret it.  His death scene is lovely and, as the Bible says, the applause that counts is in Heaven, and the whole family is there, so that the Glory of the Cristeros is now that they’re with God.

I don’t know if you read the letters which we sent to you through the Director, but I believe that my grandfather had the arrogance with which you characterized him, and the tenderness he showed his people.  He had a great love for his family:

[Quoting a letter from General Gorostieta to his family:]

“For my little children, who I can’t give a kiss to, who I can’t buy a ball for, who I can’t, as I did so often, let sleep in my arms, on such a great date for the world, on a day in which even wild beasts become tender with Glory!, by your conduct I send them this gift:  all the privations which they suffer, all the sorrows which you and I suffer, are only obedient to one end – leaving them a road, marking for them a route.  I know well that there are smoother roads in the world, and God well knows that I know how to walk them.  But those aren’t the ones that I will leave marked for them.  It’s the same bitter, gloomy road that their grandfather marked for me, the only one that exists, if one is to be forever content to have finished it and able to give an account of the journey.  The only one which, having been walked, imparts true peace.  I give them as a gift, the privations and the sorrows which the road is giving me.  Give them many kisses, and never rest from preventing – I don’t say now, but [even] within many years – that they should lose their faith on such a road.”

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19 Responses to Letter from Granddaughter of General Gorostieta

  • Very touching and powerful letter. I’ll venture to say (I hope) that Andy Garcia was equally moved and humbled by it.

  • I just saw this movie today with my mother and it is very moving. It gave me a deeper resolve to face whatever minor challenges in faith that I face and a greater love of the sacrament of reconcilliation.

  • No movie has moved me more Chris since I saw The Passion of the Christ.

  • Can’t wait to see it!!!

  • Unparalleled seems like an over statement considering how long the Hmong Catholics have ad to deal with General hatred of the faith by other Vietnamese as well as Communism and they still get arrested and used to get killed and hung quite often for their faith The problem they have is that there a lot more Cuddhists and Communists in the country of Vietnam than there are Catholics.

  • I wrote Cuddhists when I should have written Buddhists.

  • It’s a great film and one that I have been posting about on Facebook, Twitter, and my own blog. As a Catholic, the film was deeply moving since we are watching now canonized saints and blessed’s who died for the cause of religious freedom and most importantly for Christo Rey. The Church has recognized their convictions and heroic virtue in the face of evil. Andy Garcia a fine job and hope that he makes more films like – For Greater Glory. Viva Christo Rey!

  • I was deeply impress with the story and made a parallel of the Russian civil war , when the killing of priest and desecration of churches was part of the communist agenda
    The world is divided between evil and good , no matter the place , the time or the people.
    More stories like this should be presented to the world .
    thank you Gorosieta, you are an inspiration for future generations .
    Kira Mihailtichenko
    Miami

  • It is important remember that Evil is simply the destruction twisting and lack of Good. Therefore Evil to exist there has to be Good but Good can exist without Evil therefore Good is much stronger and integrated than Evil. That is the ultimate reason the Soviet Union collapsed because it was based on corrupt things things that fall apart.

  • Andy Garcia did a superb performance of General Gorostieta. As a Mexican American individual I was not aware of the cristero civil war. This movie along with research has opened my eyes and heart to the people who fought for this strong stand. From someone who loves her God thank you all for fighting and dying for your belief.

  • Did not know this history at all. Andy Garcia did a wonderful job as did the young actor who played Jose. The development of the story and the movement of scenes were so well done. All stayed to watch the credits and catch the bios of the characters.
    I wish the creators well and that they continue to bring similiar stories to audiences. People think that evil is old. This story is less than 100 years old. We must know our past to find our future.

  • i saw this movie yesterday and i can say that i had been waiting for it for years. i have a personal interest in this movie because my father became an orphaned in this christero war because my grandfather was involved in this christero movement and was killed in 1929. the mexican govermment due to being victorious in this horrific war has been very succesful in erasing the atrocities it commited during this era. when i saw the christero soldiers in battle uniform, it was like seeing my grandfather coming back to life.

  • Clementina one of the great things about the films is that we recall the heroes, like your grandfather, who stood up for the faith and paid for their lives as martyrs.

  • There is a verse in the book of Proverbs from the ” Holy Bible ” that says, ” A man plans his way but the Lord directs his steps. ” Because I believe in a sovereign Lord, I have no doubt that General Gorostieta was a man placed by our Lord at the time of the Christero movement for such a time. No different than when the Lord chose Moses many years ago. The most moving statement of the movie to me was when Mr. Garcia as General Gorostieta said to his wife, ” I believe in FREEDOM !!! ” Tyranny, oppression, starvation, and other horrible atrocities may for a time have their way but the final word will be GODS !!!!

  • It was a wonderful movie inspiring faith and courage in the face of evil, and very timely considering the current war against Catholic beliefs in the USA.

    What a shame that a faithful Catholic wife is played by Eva Longoria who is supporting Obama despite his war against the Catholic Church.
    I find her playing that role disrespectful to the memories of all those who lost their lives for religious freedom.

    Just as there were Catholics amongst the “federales”, we will see the same in the upcoming battle over religious conscience here in the USA… Those who will choose government over God and the Church.
    Hopefully, the USA will never get to this point. But who would have believed it could happen in Mexico?

  • Saw the movie yesterday. Very,very impressive! Can’t stop thinking of so many courageous believers especially that of a 14 year old, Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio. When I am in need of this virtue, I will definitely be thinking of him. Que Viva Cristo Rey.

  • This film makes us to reflect in the great blessing to practice our religious belief with FREEDOM. But it goes beyond; it shows up to what extend we should fight for what truly believe. Even without having FAITH this film speaks about FREEDOM, CONVICTION, HONESTY, LOVE and overall how the WORDS FAITH, PRINCIPLES and SACRIFICE are really spell.
    It is a very important film in a timely way, since our core Catholic principles are under attack right now not only in Mexico but here in the USA. That is why is important that our society really knows what does it mean to be Catholic. History has failed to give credit and acknowledges to these brave Catholics who gave their life, just like Jesus did for love to us.
    It would be an honor to have you in our church to hear your personal stories about your great-grandfather and to inspire our community with your family portraits.
    With Sincere affection;
    Jose Luis Villeda
    Viva Cristo Rey!

  • Brenda I will say something which I heard which is “hope for the best and expect the worst.”

The Fugitive (1947)

Tuesday, June 5, AD 2012

A Fugitive: I have a question, Lieutenant. When did you lose your faith?

 A Lieutenant of Police: When I found a better one.

The film For Greater Glory has reminded me of director John Ford’s forgotten The Fugitive (1947).  Very loosely based on Graham Greene’s The Power and the Glory (no priest in an American film in 1947 was going to have the moral failings of Greene’s whiskey priest) the film did poorly at the box office and soon fell into oblivion, except among film critics who regard it as one of Ford’s more interesting works.  Ford said it was  his favorite film.

The film is set in a nameless country, obviously Mexico where the movie was filmed, where religion has been abolished by the government.  Henry Fonda is the last priest hunted by a police lieutenant, played maniacally by Pedro Armendáriz.  Armendariz is a whole-hearted convert to atheism, and views the capture of Fonda as a noble task.  

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7 Responses to The Fugitive (1947)

  • Yeah, this is the film I meant! It’s got some gorgeous, gorgeous scenes in it.

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen the beginning of the movie, though, because TCM was always airing it at weird times.

  • “All in all, an interesting film. However, I wish Ford’s main leading man, John Wayne, had been cast in the role of the fugitive priest. While he is on the run he rounds up a hard riding band of Cristeros. In the climactic fight scene he leads the Cristeros in liberating the village, taking out the police lieutenant in a mano a mano epic fight, and ends the film saying mass for the newly liberated villagers! Whatever the critics might have said in after years about the film, I guarantee it would have been a smash hit at the box office!”

    Yea, Donald, and I wish that Mel Gibson would have had the lead in The Passion and led the apostles and his followers in a violent revolt against the Romans like in Braveheart and instead of being captured and killed at the end he would have cut off all their heads like he and Homer Simpson cut off the heads of all the other senators when they remade Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.

    With all your militaristic ramblings Donald . . . do you get the point of the Gospels.

  • Glinda, how long have you suffered the dreadful malady of being humor impaired, and have you sought treatment for this grave affliction?

  • Glinda,

    What you write about what happened during Christ’s first coming is absolutely correct. Below is what is going to happen when He comes again, and it is going to make the Cristeros’ rebellion against an evil and vicious atheist dictator look like a child’s game of Cowboys and Indians. Buckle up, “baby”, because the wrath of God is going to come. He will not indefinitely tolerate baby murdering to the tune of 1 million per year in this country, and the heretical nuns who give assent and approval for the same. His justice is the other side of the coin whose head is love; and He loves babies, He loves His Church, He loves righteousness and holiness.

    11 Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. 12 His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. 13 He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. 15 Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written:

    KING OF KINGS AND
    LORD OF LORDS.

    17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, “Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, 18 that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.”

    19 And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. 20 Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. 21 And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.

    Revelation 19:11-21 [ Did you read that, Glinda? – it’s agonna be horrible because that’s what sin does. ]

  • Mr. McClarey, thanks for the heads-up. I’d never heard of this film before,
    and I’ll be sure to check it out.

  • I think you will enjoy it Clinton. It is a film that is worthy of careful examination since, at least in my case, there are nuances that flew right by me the first few times I watched it.

Archbishop Chaput Enthusiastically Recommends For Greater Glory

Monday, June 4, AD 2012

 

 

Archbishop Charles  Chaput of the Philadelphia Archdiocese has written a column which appeared on May 29th whole-heartedly recommending that Catholics see For Greater Glory:

Earlier this week we celebrated Memorial Day. For most of us, the holiday informally marks the start of summer. Over the next three months families will take their vacations, the pace of life will slow a bit and people will have a little more precious time to relax and restore their spirits.

The purpose of recreation is to renew us in body and soul; to give us time to think; to reconnect us with family and the gift of being alive. For me, that usually means a week of fishing with friends, catching up on a pile of good books and enjoying a few good movies.

And since all good things are meant to be shared, I can already recommend — in fact, enthusiastically recommend — a film that no Catholic should miss this summer.

“For Greater Glory” opens in select theaters this Friday, June 1. Written, directed and acted with outstanding skill, it’s the story of Mexico’s Cristero War (also known as La Cristiada, 1926-29). Largely ignored until recently – even in Mexico – the war resulted from Mexico’s atheist constitution of 1917, subsequent anti-religious legislation and fierce anti-clerical persecution by the government of President Plutarco Elias Calles, who came to power in 1924.

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2 Responses to Archbishop Chaput Enthusiastically Recommends For Greater Glory

  • The Person of God, the Father and God the Father’s Love for Jesus Christ, the Person of the Holy Spirit, and the Person of the Son of God, Jesus Christ, and Jesus Christ’s Love for God, His Father, the Person of the Holy Spirit are three Persons in One God – and are addressed as WHO.
    Viva Christo Rey. Government serves its constituents. Government’s constituents serve God. There is no government without God. Communism, totalitarianism, socialism, fascism, their name is Legion and even the herd of swine does not abide them. The herd of swine, 4000, possessed by Legion, the devil, ran off a cliff and drowned itself in the sea. The devil believes in God but atheists choose not to believe in God, “their Creator” from The Declaration of Independence. The United States of America has chosen to be run by atheists, in spite of the Person of God inscribed into its founding documents as “their Creator”. How patriotic is that? How truthful is that? How smart is that? How generous and charitable is that?
    Charity is a virtue. In order for the government to practice the virtue of charity, government must acknowledge, publicly acknowledge God,” “their Creator” and also acknowledge that the practice of the virtue of charity is the domain of the church. Without the acknowledgement, by government, of God, as “their Creator” and the church as the servant of God, and government as the servant of its constituents; government, constituted by the sovereign personhood of its constituents, who are endowed with sovereign personhood by “their Creator” has no sovereign authority to govern, the reason for its existence. Real money must not be given to support a regime without the truth of God. Viva Christo Rey.

  • Viva Cristo Rey!!!

    Great movie. I saw it. I was impressed. It was an epic.

A Film For Our Time, and All Times

Sunday, June 3, AD 2012

 

No one, surely, Venerable Brothers, can hazard a prediction or foresee in imagination the hour when the good God will bring to an end such calamities. We do know this much: The day will come when the Church of Mexico will have respite from this veritable tempest of hatred, for the reason that, according to the words of God “there is no wisdom, there is no prudence, there is no counsel against the Lord” (Prov. xxi, 30) and “the gates of hell shall not prevail” (Matt. xvi, 18) against the Spotless Bride of Christ.

Pius XI, INIQUIS AFFLICTISQUE

 

I knew that my viewing of For Greater Glory was going to be something special when two Dominican nuns, in habits,  came out of the showing before the one my family and I attended and one of them remarked to me that it was a very powerful film.  I replied that we were looking forward to seeing it.  Well, that wasn’t completely true.  My worldly, jaded 17 year old daughter would much have preferred to have been back home killing zombies online with her internet chums.  By the end of the film  she was weeping over the scene in which 14 year old Blessed  José Sánchez del Río, stunningly portrayed by Mauricio Kuri,  was martyred.  I did not blame her.  I have not been so deeply moved by a film since I saw The Passion of the Christ.

Before we go any farther, I should announce the obligatory spoiler alert.  I will be mentioning plot elements that people who have not seen the film might not wish to have revealed to them.  For those wishing to continue on, if you have not read my initial post here on the historical background of the Cristeros War, you might find it helpful to look at it before reading this review.

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25 Responses to A Film For Our Time, and All Times

  • I saw the film on Friday, opening day, and was very moved by it. I am a B16 kind of Catholic and find the LCWR and their supporters in a role of harrassment against those of us who accept the teaching magisterium of the Church and want to be faithful to its dogma and sacramental life. I wonder how the dear nuns would react to a film where courageous Mexicans were willing to give their very lives for God, where heaven cost them everything. I admire their deep faith and am grateful for their example. What are the LCWR nuns examples of? New Age faux theologies, feminism that supports abortion on demand, gay marriage. Who would die for those things?! They need to wake up. Go see the movie, sisters, and find out what the Church is really about. Certainly not your power struggle with the bishops. Viva Christo Rey!

  • I saw the film on Friday evening with some young men from the Church. The martyrdom of Blessed José Sánchez del Río reminded me of Revelation 6:9-11:

    9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: 10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? 11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.

  • The Mexican Constitution to this day contains many anti-Catholic articles,
    forbidding the church to own property, interfering in Her administration,
    banning monasteries, limiting seats in seminaries, prohibiting Church schools,
    even prohibiting both processions and the wearing of clerical dress outside
    the walls of a church. Some of these laws are now ignored by the authorities,
    but they remain as a threat. For example, a few years back the Cardinal
    Archbishop of Mexico City made a public statement condemning government
    corruption and collusion with drug cartels. As I recall, the president of
    Mexico responded by pointing out that the provisions of the constitution
    remain in effect. The Church’s social services and schools are permitted to
    operate only on the sufferance of the government, and could be swept away
    should She make herself too troublesome.

    I’d imagine our president rather envies Mexico for her modern, progressive
    constitution.

  • My wife and I saw this movie last night. I noted one of the liberties that the film too, namely the burning of the train by Vega. I also noted in retrospect that they made it a point of showing him with several women smuggling ammunition when he meets General Ramirez, who seems to raise an eyebrow about the circumstances. In wanting to be charitable to the filmmaker, I wonder if it’s possible that perhaps other sources picked up Mexican government propaganda and used that as a source on Fr. Vega. I’m sure you’re right about the character of Fr. Vega, but I’m not a historian, so I have no idea what kind of evidence was used in the sources which present Fr. Vega in a rather negative light. Perhaps you can give us more information?

  • I’d like to think this movie may be a lesson for Obama and the secularist. Is there a point beyond which we will resist?

  • “I’d imagine our president rather envies Mexico for her modern, progressive
    constitution.”

    Not just Obama:

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/02/06/ginsburg-to-egyptians-wouldnt-use-us-constitution-as-model/

  • Just saw the movie and certainly can’t add to what you’ve said. All I can say I hope my faith is never put to the test.
    Can you suggest any books on the Cristero war or the period generally? My knowledge of Mexican hiistory is spotty at best.

  • The literature on the Cristero War in English is fairly sparse. The best book is probably Jean Meyer’s The Cristero Rebellion

    http://www.amazon.com/Cristero-Rebellion-1926-1929-Cambridge-
    American/dp/0521102057/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338758811&sr=1-1

    A good short history is in Latin American Wars, volume II

    http://www.amazon.com/Latin-Americas-Wars-Professional-1900-2001/dp/1574884522/ref=sr_1_10?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338758811&sr=1-10

  • Wikipedia has what I would consider to be a reasonable section on the Cristero War, but I am hardly one to speak authoritatively. It “seems” accurate, to me.

  • (Guest comment from Don’s wife Cathy:) Don tells me the Wikipedia article on the Cristero War is accurate, Don the Kiwi. (Although I’m the one with the university degree in Spanish, Don’s read more Latin American history than I have. At least I can translate the Spanish-language resources for him!)

  • What is the story behind José Victoriano Huerta Márquez, 35th President of Mexico, whose dictatorship the Church allegedly supported, because of which support the anti-clerical laws in the Mexican Constitution were established? Did the Church shoot itself in the foot? I also read that at first the US supported Victoriano Huerta, and then Woodrow Wilson admonished him to restore / institute democratic reforms. Is this liberal progressive revisionist history, or is there some truth to all of this?

  • Few events in history are more convuluted and confusing then the Mexican Revolution that started in 1910. Madero toppled Diaz. He was overthrown by Huerta in 1913 after Madero proved unable to cope with the revolts that he faced. Huerta had initial US backing, but the incoming Wilson administration opposed him and backed Carranza who toppled Huerta in 1914. The Church in the chaos of the Mexican Revolution simply attempted to survive. Mexico has a long tradition of anti-clericalism dating back the first half of the nineteenth century. Anti-clericalists were at the helm when the 1917 Constitution was written. The Church was attacked at the time as supporting conservative forces in the Mexican Revolution, notably Huerta, but that was a false allegation:

    http://pittsburgh.academia.edu/ReynaldoRojoMendoza/Papers/150348/The_Church-State_Conflict_in_Mexico_from_the_Mexican_Revolution_to_the_Cristero_Rebellion

  • Thanks for the clarification, Donald. It’s always best to be properly informed.

  • From Fr Seraphim Beshoner’s podcast “Catholic under the Hood” (Franciscan humor there) an episode about the role of women in the revolt.

    http://catholicunderthehood.com/2011/12/10/278-las-brigadas-femeninas/

    Looking a the show notes he does give sources that interesting.

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  • Wow, it’s like we watched two different movies. As important as this story is and as much as I wanted to like this movie as a practicing Catholic, a combination of poor directing, an overblown and hammy score and average to sometimes cringeworthy acting (with a few exceptions – Blades and Greenwood) just ruined it for me. Despite their obvious anti-Catholic bias, I have to admit the secular critics were right in panning this seriously flawed movie. It seems that Catholics are so
    hungry for any movie that treats the faith favorably these days, some are willing to overlook the fact that a movie is just not that good (There Be Dragons is another recent example). We should expect better than this.

  • “It seems that Catholics are so hungry for any movie that treats the faith favorably these days, some are willing to overlook the fact that a movie is just not that good ”

    Or simply have a completely different opinion from yours as to the film. Everyone should go see it and make up their own minds as to the merit of the movie.

  • The movie was GREAT! Absolutely awesome. And head and shoulders above any of the recent releases (e.g., Battleship, Avengers, etc.).

  • I can’t get the scene of the martyrdom of Jose out of my head. The kid was fantastic throughout the entire movie.

  • Dear Donald,
    I was pleasantly surprised to see a link to my paper. Thanks very much!

    I would be happy to hear comments about it and to answer questions anyone may have about the Cristero Rebellion, or about the Revolutionary and post-Revolutionary (anti)religious policies.

  • Thank you Reynaldo for writing an epic paper that clarifies a topic I have always found somewhat confusing.

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  • My sole complaint about the movie comes at the very end. In order to give the pretense of a happy ending all that’s mentioned is that the church bells rang again. There was no mention of the 6,000+ Cristeros that Calles executed once they laid down their arms. Guess that was his idea of “amnesty.”

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New Video Clips From For Greater Glory

Tuesday, May 29, AD 2012

 We wish to pay a special tribute of praise to those members of the clergy, secular and regular, and of the Catholic laity, who, moved by burning zeal for religion and maintaining themselves in close obedience to this Apostolic See, have written glorious pages in the recent history of the Church in Mexico.

Pius XI, Acerba animi

 

The film, For Greater Glory, the heroic story of the Cristeros who fought for the Church and religious liberty in the twenties of the last century in Mexico, is opening on June 1.  Go here  to read my first post on the film and the historical background of the Cristeros War.  I have found some new video clips online from the film.  The video at the beginning of the post shows Enrique Gorostieta Velarde, portrayed by Andy Garcia, and his family being turned away from a Church closed by the Mexican government.    Enrique Gorostieta Velarde, not a believing Catholic at the start of the struggle, would eventually become the leader of the Cristeros.

In the above clip Father Christopher, portrayed by Peter O’Toole, rejects the counsel to flee from government troops by Blessed Jose Sanchez del Rio, portrayed by Mauricio Kuri.  Captured by government soldiers during the Cristeros War,  Blessed Jose Sanchez del Rio refused a command to renounce his Catholic faith by shouting out “Death to Christ the King” and was murdered by his captors.  He shouted Viva Cristo Rey before he died and, according to an eyewitness, drew a cross on the ground with his blood and kissed it before he died.  He was 14 years old.  He was beatified by Pope Benedict on November 20, 2005.

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4 Responses to New Video Clips From For Greater Glory

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  • I hope this will give American Catholics the courage to stand up for their faith, to practice with fervor, to cease fomenting internal dissent over small matters in order to stand united against the bigger threat of a total secularization, led by the Obama administration, that would entirely privatize religion and keep it from influencing the moral tenor of the public square. The new dogma that there is no dogma is making a terrible mess of American society, infusing it with lewd behavior, rage, lawlessness, violence. For sure, the Church is made up of people and people all bear the burden of original sine and are capable of bad, even disgusting, behavior. But the temptation to leave the Church in disgust is the work of the Devil. The Church was founded by Christ and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. A bumper sticker reads: “The game is fixed. The Lamb will win. Be there.” Be faithful, be true, be there.

  • I like Susan’s quote, “The game is fixed. The Lamb will win. Be there.”

  • “Who are you if you don’t stand up for what you believe?”

For Greater Glory: God’s Timing

Sunday, May 27, AD 2012

 

The film, For Greater Glory, the heroic story of the Cristeros who fought for the Church and religious liberty in the twenties of the last century in Mexico, is opening on June 1.  Go here  to read my post on the film.  The National Catholic Register’s Tim Drake has an interview with the producer of the film, Pablo Jose Barroso.  Note what the producer says about the timing of the film in regard to the struggle for religious liberty the Church is waging today in our country:

Tell me about the film.

It’s a great experience because it takes you to that period and beautiful  country, with its art and settings. It’s a story of hope, of freedom and of  heroism. The film tells the story of the pacifist movement, a group of people  who were trying to change things in Congress peacefully, as well as the story of  a former general who is recruited to organize the Cristeros into an army. You  also see several of the martyrs, including Blessed Jose Sanchez del Rio. In the  end, it’s about people standing up against oppression and dying for Christ. My  hope is that it will give viewers great hope.

What do you hope viewers take away from the film?

I think that, culturally, we’re not being congruent with our religious  beliefs. We are not standing up for our faith. We’ve been tolerating things that  are wrong. It seems as if it’s easier for people to be against God than to claim  him as their Creator. In this Year of Faith [to begin in October], the Holy  Spirit can help people to be more faithful. If only one person who doesn’t  believe in God sees this film and reflects on him, that is my best hope.

Given the current fight for religious freedom going on in the U.S., do  you see the release of the film as God’s timing?

Yes, it was frustrating and difficult not to have the film released when I  wanted it, but the Lord’s time is not our time. The movie is about conscience.  No one ever wins when religion is oppressed. As believers we need to band  together. This is the perfect time for this film. Hopefully, it will help wake  people up to the things that are taking us from God. In the end, this will harm  us. We have to be faithful.

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2 Responses to For Greater Glory: God’s Timing

  • I have met Mexican Catholics who never heard of this event. It’s not taught in their schools. When I took History of Latin America in college, the class had a Marxist bent, and the nature of this war was misrepresented and downplayed. I didn’t know about it until much later. When one abandons the truth, it’s still there, and so it must be hidden lest it become a reminder of the falsehood one has embraced.

For Greater Glory: Interview With Andy Garcia

Thursday, May 3, AD 2012

Ed Morrissey’s interview with Andy Garcia, the star of For Greater Glory, the film opening on June 1, retelling the heroic tale of the Cristeros, and their fight for the liberty of the Catholic Church and religious freedom in Mexico in the twenties of the last century.  Go here to read my post on the film and the historical background.  I can’t wait to see this film, which couldn’t be coming out at a more opportune time when the Church in this country is waging a fight for religious liberty.  Viva Cristo Rey!

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8 Responses to For Greater Glory: Interview With Andy Garcia

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  • Why isn’t this taught in Catholic schools here in America?

    Our increasingly numerous Spanish-speaking bishops have no excuse for this omission in the Catholic schools within their own diocese. CCD classes should cover this too.

    (Same goes for the truth history of the Crusades. On that topic, no U.S. bishop has an excuse.)

  • I love the fact that Mr. Garcia decided to do this film but he should not generalize and say that most Mexican-Americans and even Mexicans don’t know this part of Mexican History. My grandfather fought in this war and I grew up hearing stories about the Cristeros. I was also tought about this all thru my collage years and it is in many Mexican History books.

  • It is about time people see that Catholics are prepared to die for Love Of God. Respect for religious freedom does not apply just to the Jews and Muslims of the World. Todays Catholics should look at this movie and model their lives on the Love The CRISTERO showed for the Divine Kinship of Christ.
    VIV Cristo REX!!!!

  • I am anxiously awaiting the release of this movie in the USA. My grandparents (now in their 90’s) were part of this fight. They tell us that they left everything behind to support the church and started all over with nothing being forced to learn to live in caves, but well worth it.

  • God bless your grandparents Silvia!

  • I think this shows the faithfulness of the Hispanic Catholics dating back already to the times when Spain was being oppressed by the Moors.

  • I commend Andy Garcia for bringing a story of FAITH to a wider audience that shows the power of a secular government cannot defeat a determined people. It is especially timely today with the present administration working to deny Religious Freedom, a FREEDOM that Americans enjoyed since the founding of this country. I do not understand why Mexico cannot revise their constitution to enshrine not only those Religious Freedoms that were revised but also to revise and strenthen The Rule Of Law that would allow Prosperity for a people who are naturally Industrious, and restricts the GREED of politicians.

For Greater Glory: Viva Christo Rey!

Thursday, March 22, AD 2012

Hattip to Ed Morrissey at Hot Air.  I have been waiting for this movie for over a year and now it is finally being released on June 1, 2012.  For Greater Glory (formerly entitled Cristiada).  The must see movie for 2012 for all American Catholics and all of our fellow Americans who cherish religious liberty.  At a time when the Obama administration is firing the opening shots in a struggle against the religious freedom of Catholics, and exploiting a de facto schism within the Church in America to accomplish their ends, a film is being released this election year detailing the struggle of Mexican Catholics in the last century against a bitterly anti-Catholic regime.  Most of the time in life coincidences are merely coincidences, but sometimes I suspect they are sent by God for His purposes.  In any case it appears to be a worthy movie to retell the heroic story of Mexican Catholics and their fight for the Church and freedom.

The story of the Cristeros is the tale of the attempt by the Mexican government to crush the Catholic Church.  Mexico had a long history of anti-clerical political movements prior to the revolution of 1910.  However, the Mexican Revolution brought to the fore radical elements that pushed through the Constitution of 1917 with its anti-clerical articles 3, 5, 27 and 130.  In his encyclical Iniquis Afflictisque, the first of three encyclicals he wrote condemning the persecution of the Church in Mexico, Pius XI described the war against the Church waged by the Mexican government:

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21 Responses to For Greater Glory: Viva Christo Rey!

  • That’s good news, I’ve been anticipating this for some time. This past year I began studying this history. Amazing how ignorant we are of what happened right next door, not too long ago and appears to be happening here – with less macho attitude, more insidious.

    I assume the name change has to do with having a wider appeal. I hope it educates people.

    Viva Christo Rey!

    Arriba!

  • The name change probably is for that reason AK. Likewise the more recent trailer emphasizes the fight for freedom rather than the war on the Church as the older trailer, at the bottom of the post, does. None of that matters to me as long as the story is told. I suspect that the producers of the film have begun to realize that they could have an unexpected hit on their hands, and I am glad it is getting a summer release. I am going to do my best to spread the news about this film.

  • Thank you, Donald. I knew nothing about the persecution of the Church in Mexico during the 20th century. None of this is taught in public school. As the American Knight correctly pointed out, how amazingly ignorant we are of the history of a country right next to us. Thus apparently are we doomed to repeat its mistakes. Pray to God this isn’t the case!

  • I think the producers are cunning like serpents and innocent as doves. Sell an action movie about freedom and the audience gets the truth about religious persecution. Brilliant! Plus it has the politically-correct appeal of being ‘ethnic’.

    Paul, what is worse is that our government was complicit in the whole thing. We both turned a blind eye and supported the massacre. the WASP establishment has been maintaining its dominance in our land at any cost (most recent example – Myth RINO-Money – I know he’s a Mormon, but he is the Northeast WASP choice over against the Catholic choice – no not that one – I am referring to Newt.)

    The one voice that petitioned our government to stop the persecution and not assist it, was Holy Mother Church – especially the Knights of Columbus. As the membership ages and grows larger in the middle with good food and beer, perhaps it is time for the KofC to begin battle preparations, we may actually need Knights soon.

  • “Paul, what is worse is that our government was complicit in the whole thing. We both turned a blind eye and supported the massacre.”

    Complete and total rubbish AK. The American government, through its ambassador to Mexico Dwight Morrow, worked with the Vatican to bring about peace and the ending of the worst of the persecution of Catholics in Mexico:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwight_Whitney_Morrow

  • How appropriate on the eve of Pope Benedict’s visit to Mexico.

    And very symbolic, he is visiting Guanajuato (my mother’s home town as well as JEB Bush’s wife’s hometown), where the Mexican rebellion against the Spanish Empire began.

    Another symbol in the visit is that when JP2 visited Mexico for the first time, provisions were put forth by the Vatican that those anti-Catholic laws in the Mexican Constitution be removed.

    God is great!

    ?Viva Cristo Rey!

  • Donald, you write : “Most of the time in life coincidences are merely coincidences, but sometimes I suspect they are sent by God for His purposes.”

    Be assured, Donald “Coincidence” is the Second Name of the Holy Spirit. This Film has come out at the right time – God’s Right Time for your beloved country, U.S. of America and for the World. + Lautedur Iesus Christus +

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  • My first inkling of Communism in Mexico came when I saw the movie “the Assassination of Trotsky” — 30 years later I read Graham Greene’s “The Power and the Glory” — Please God my personal “organic growth” and development of understanding during those 30 interim years will continue apace!

  • This is a must-see movie. The last (I imagined it would be) time I went to see a movie in a theater was 2003.

    Sorry that I don’t have the attribution for the following quote.

    “The Russian dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn bore witness to this truth in his 1983 Templeton address: It was Dostoevsky, once again, who drew from the French Revolution and its seeming hatred of the Church the lesson that “revolution must necessarily begin with atheism.” That is absolutely true. But the world had never before known a godlessness as organized, militarized, and tenaciously malevolent as that practiced by Marxism. Within the philosophical system of Marx and Lenin, and at the heart of their psychology, hatred of God is the principal driving force, more fundamental than all their political and economic pretensions. Militant atheism is not merely incidental or marginal to Communist policy; it is not a side effect, but the central pivot.”

    This is the motive behind Obama’s all-out, dirty war against Holy Mother Church.

  • My sophomores are in the midst of studying the 20th century persecution of the Church in Mexico right now, with the emphasis on Miguel Pro. I’ve encouraged them to see the film when it finally hits theaters.

  • I studied during the 70s and 80s in a Catholic school in Mexico. Eventhough we had religion classes it did not appear in the report card because it was not legal to teach it. In the report card there was a row with grades but no subject. Most mexicans know nothing about the Cristeros war since it is not in the history books. However, there is still a strong anticatholic rhetoric in the history books, most government official, and public universities.

  • God bless Andy Garcia for his wonderful, TRUTHFUL films! Every one I’ve seen is marvelous! I can’t wait to see “Vivo Christo Rey” !

  • this movie means alot to my family .. my great grandpa fought in this war.. my 95 year old grandma still talks about her dad fighting for cristo ray.. she told us that my great grandpa was a vary importent man in this war. vary proud. lots more of this story but i would telll it to any one that wants to listen

  • Your great grandfather’s story sounds fascinating Eric. Tell us more if you wish. I might include it in a future post.

  • T Shaw: Thank you for the quote which accurately describes what is happening here in America.

  • Another great film dealing with this time period in Mexico was John Ford’s 1940’s, “The Fugitive” with Henry Fonda. The story of a hunted priest who finally escapes but comes back to his death. Saw it as a boy and have never forgotten it.

  • I have tried to put out a lot of informative posts regarding this topic.

    Jean Meyer, the premier historian of the Cristero Wars, is behind this film.

    Mr. Meyer, a French-naturalized Mexican, began his research in the 70’s and was antagonistic to the Cristeros. As he interviewed hundreds and hundreds of eyewitnesses, the Cristeros won his respect.

    http://kneelingcatholic.blogspot.com/search?q=cristiada

  • I passed this to all my family and friends. My father, in turn, passed it to his friends. He mentioned he was ashamed because he knew nothing of this period, of how the Church dealt with persecutions just south of our borders. He urged everyone to prepare, to gather together and pray, and fast, and rally in support of religious liberty now while we still can. “Viva Cristo Rey! “should be proclaimed by all of us, loud and clear, and inserted into every protest sign, email, letter, phone, contact we make with our elected officials…

    Thanks, Mr. McClarey, for helping us understand the enormous task before us…

    Jesus – help us!