Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lorenzo Ruiz/Our World Tuesday

Most Filipino Catholics recognize the name San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila, the first Filipino saint. He was also known as Lorenzo de Manila, born in Binondo, Manila between 1600 and 1610 to a Chinese father and Tagalog mother.  He was an altar boy and was educated by the Dominican Fathers.  San Lorenzo Ruiz was a layman, with two sons and a daughter.

This statue of Lorenzo de Manila is located at the open field near Quirino Grandstand across the Rizal monument.

The caption at the statue’s base reads: “Si yo tuviera miles de Vidas las daria por mi fe."  The on-line Spanish-English translation is "If I had thousands of lives, I would give for my faith."  This was part of his declaration while being tortured and his tormentor taunted him that his life would be spared if he would renounce his faith.  

"That I shall never do, because I am a Christian and I shall die for God, and for Him I will give many thousands of lives if I had them.  And so do with me as you please." ~ Lorenzo de Manila
In 1636, Ruiz was falsely accused of killing a Spaniard.  He sought asylum on board a ship with Dominican priests bound for Okinawa, Japan.  By the time they arrived in Japan, the Tokugawa shogunate was persecuting Christians and the missionaries were consequently arrested and thrown to prison.  Ruiz and his companions went through different types of torture---needles were inserted inside their fingernails, they were beaten unconscious; they were hung by their feet and submerged in water until some of his companions recant their faith.

On September 27, 1637, Ruiz and his companions were taken to the Nishizaka Hill.  There, he was hung upside down into a pit---this form of torture was known as tsurushi in Japanese or horca y hoya in Spanish.  This was the most painful way to die in those times and involved using rocks to add weight to the person until the tortured person suffocates and is crushed from their own weight.  After two days, Lorenzo Ruiz died from bleeding and suffocation.  His body was cremated and his ashes were thrown to the sea.  He never recanted his love and faith in God.  Source

Lorenzo de Manila was beatified by Pope John II during the Papal visit to Manila on February 18, 1981.  Saint Lorenzo Ruiz was elevated to sainthood and received canonization on October 18, 1987 by Pope John Paul II in Rome.  He is recognized as the first Filipino saint and martyr.

I feel sad for this tattered marker.  I feel sad for those who suffered, who are still suffering  and persecuted because of their faith, political allegiance, and ethnicity.

Linking to Our World-Tuesday 


Zosia said...

Luna Miranda - what an interesting name.
I didn't know the story of Lorenzo Ruiz. Thank you and thank you for stopping by at Polonica: Home Again.

Andrea said...

Hi Luna, i guess you will post about P Calungsod next. Even during those times we are already a source of brave and saintly humans. Now that our population is overpowering its physical territory, we are still producing martyrs and heroes!

Jenn said...

Kudos to these brave souls. Being a Christian is never easy, even in today's world.

lotusleaf said...

An interesting piece of history. Thanks for sharing, Luna Miranda.

Indrani said...

Very interesting story. Lots to see in this beautiful world.

Anonymous said...

What a lovely tribute to this saint and to all who suffer due to their beliefs.

Stewart M said...

Thats an interesting story - one that i had never read before.

Stewart M - Australia

carol l mckenna said...

Very informative post ~ Great photos ~ Tragedy what has been done in the name of 'God' ~ wonder if we will ever get it right ~ (A Creative Harbor)

thanks for coming by and commenting ^_^

EG CameraGirl said...

It's sad that humans torture others for what they believe. I think, if the believer is not hurting anyone, then let them ne!

mrsbearfoot said...

Thank you for sharing this impressive Christian/Catholic historical post. It is sad that religious persecution is still happening.

A wondering star said...

Good information about San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila, the first Filipino saint.
My dear daughter in law countries.
I get so sad when I hear what he experienced.
Thanks for sharing

magiceye said...

Fascinating read!

Beyond Wandering said...

Beautiful photos, and a wonderful story!

escape said...

amazing because ive never seen this monument in quirino. by the time ill drop by that area ill find this monument. now we have two saints!

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