Pope Francis has recognised the heroic virtues of the founder and first president of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP) in Spain.
On January 21, 2021, His Holiness approved the promulgation of the decree concerning the heroic virtues of the Servant of God, Santiago Masarnau Fernández, a faithful layman. He was born on December 10, 1805, in Madrid, and died on December 14, 1882, in the same city. This is a major milestone in the process of beatification of the first president and founder of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Spain.
With the promulgation of his heroic virtues, Santiago Masarnau is given the title, “Venerable”, thus ratifying that fact that he lived both the theological virtues (faith, hope and charity) and the cardinal virtues (prudence, justice, fortitude and temperance), as well as all the other virtues in a heroic manner, that is to say, outstandingly.
The declaration of “Venerable” is a step forward in the official process of causes of saints, to become then “Blessed” and then “Saint”. The criteria for evaluating the sanctity of a person are as follows: the reputation of sanctity; the performance of good deeds during his/her lifetime and heroic virtues; and the power to perform miracles.
Our thanks to Father Guerra, CM (postulator with Sister Maria Teresa Candelas, DC), to Father Corpus Juan, CM, and Father Barquín, CM, as well as to our brother Juan Carlos Flores, of San Antonio de Padua Conference in Madrid, for his historical research. We would also like to thank Sebastián Gramajo, 2nd Vice-President General of the CGI, and our dear President General, Renato Lima de Oliveira, for the interest shown in this Cause.
For further information, visit the SSVP Spain’s website (www.ssvp.es) or click on the following links: