This Sunday, June 21, is Fathers’ Day and the beginning of summer. In addition, Pope (meaning “father”) Benedict XVI has proclaimed this year, beginning last Friday–that was the Feast of the Sacred Heart–be observed throughout the Catholic World as the YEAR OF THE PRIEST. This augurs well for the re-establishment of the web log dedicated to the life and legacy of Padre Antonio José Martínez, Cura de Taos. Padre Martínez was a legitimate father in fact as well as the spiritual father for the thousands of people he served during his long ministry as the Cura de Taos in northern New Mexico. As a young man of 19, he had married María de La Luz Martínez, a distant relative from the same village of Abiqiui, NM–westerly of Santa Fe and Taos. She died while giving birth to their daughter, and was buried in the church yard of Santo Tomás in Abiquiu. Antonio José had been baptized there as an infant , and at the age of 29 would return there for one of his first assignments as the priest in charge. The maternal grandparents of little María de La Luz brought up the child in the unity and love of an extended family of which Antonio José was a part. Nevertheless, after a few years, Antonio José felt the call to priesthood, and traveled to Durango to pursue the calling through seminary study. Not long after María de la Luz turned twelve, she also died an untimely death.
Stay tuned to this blog, and pray for all priests.