Sister Moreno Benítez FMA and Sister Carbonell Muñoz FMA were shot in the Hippodrome in Barcelona, Spain on 6 September 1936, and were beatified by Pope John Paul II on 11 March 2001 as part of the group of 233 Spanish martyrs.
Professor Ciezkowska, Vice-Postulator for the Institute of the FMA, will speak about them and others at tomorrow’s conference, immediately after the introduction by Sister Grazia Loparco, Coordinator of the FMA Study Centre. Professor Ciezkowska’s talk will aim to highlight the participation of the FMA in the cross of Christ in times of explicit persecution, through the testimonies of some religious who were called to experience incarceration or conviction, evidence that they remained faithful and bore witness to their faith even in death. It will also be an opportunity for a broader reflection on the mystery of Christian martyrdom in the Church, meditated and interpreted throughout history, no stranger to St John Bosco and St Mary Domenica Mazzarello, and experienced in the twentieth century by other members of the Salesian Family.
Finally, the talk will also offer insights into the daily martyrdom that, according to St Teresa of Jesus, "is the life of a good religious who wants to be among the most intimate friends of God". It will also encourage the use of the Martyrology, which was the last liturgical book published in the wake of the Second Vatican Council to keep alive the memory of the martyrs.
"Martyrdom is a universal qualification of the Church yesterday and today. Every year at least one hundred thousand Christians were killed in odium fidei - eleven every hour, one every five minutes," according to the Salesian Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, speaking a few days ago at the Gregorian University in Rome.