Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, OFM Conv., blesses the site of the future Georgia Martyrs monument on the front lawn of Nativity of Our Lady Church in Darien Sept. 15 after Mass. Photograph by Jessica L. Marsala.

Future site of GA Martyrs monument blessed

Originally Appeared in : 9920-9/26/19

DARIEN--The future site of the Georgia Martyrs monument received a blessing Sept. 15 after Mass at Nativity of our Lady Church in Darien.


At the Mass, Father Pablo Migone preached a homily in which he compared Saint Paul, the author of the day’s second reading, to the Gospel about the Prodigal Son and finally to the five Franciscan martyrs who await beatification, the next stage in their cause for canonization.


Father Migone said that the early Christian martyrs like Saint Paul, who may also be “the first flesh-and-bone example” of the Prodigal Son, lived their lives without complacency or indifference and with “fervent and passionate conviction.”


“The same grace from Christ that motivated and strengthened Saint Paul to dedicate his life to the Gospel motivated five young, passionate Franciscan friars in Spain to volunteer to share the Gospel with newly discovered peoples in faraway lands,” Father Migone said. “Like Saint Paul, friars Pedro, Blas, Miguel, Antonio and Francisco left behind the comforts of home and set out in a journey where Jesus transformed them and strengthened them to the point of death for the sake of the Gospel.”


Once Mass ended, parishioners followed their altar servers and parish priests out the front doors of the church to gather on the front lawn.

Prayer to dedicate the monument:
Father of Mercies, who throughout the ages have been pleased by those who have conformed their lives perfectly to Christ your Son through the shedding of their blood, bless this ground which today is set aside for the memory of Pedro de Corpa and his four companion friars. May their witness to the sacrament of marriage along this same coast four centuries ago never be forgotten. May the monument that will stand here be a reminder of their heroic sacrifice to all who will gather here. Bless and guide our efforts so that through them, the cause for their beatification may reach its completion. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Principal celebrant Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, OFM Conv., thanked the parish for hosting the future monument. He also relayed his desire that the monument promote awareness and devotion to the cause.


“So this is historical for you, your family, your children, grandchildren and the generations to come. They will come here as will others as they become aware of this special place, as we remember the gift of their own lives that these five friars have done;” Bishop Hartmayer said. “And you're going to be hosting tourists and people of devotion, people who want to see visibly the symbol of the five martyrs, and if you've seen the holy card, it's very similar to the monument that we will establish here; it's been commissioned as one of a kind, and it will be here on this property.”

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