Theology of the Heart: Teachings of the Saints
My Memory Always Remind You That There is a Better Life
A Martyr's Letter to His Girlfriend
Bl. Bartolomé Blanco Márquez
Spain, NOV. 9, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Here is a translation of a letter
from Bartolomé Blanco Márquez, written to his girlfriend from prison
the day before he was executed during religious persecution in 1930s
Spain. Márquez was beatified Oct. 28; the letter is published in the
“Summarium Super Martyrio” of his beatification cause.
Bartolomé Blanco Márquez was born in Cordoba in 1914. He was
arrested as a Catholic leader -- he was the secretary of Catholic
Action and a delegate to the Catholic Syndicates -- on Aug. 18,
1936. He was executed on Oct. 2, 1936, at age 21, while he cried
out, “Long live Christ the King!”
* * *
Provincial prison of Jaen, Oct. 1, 1936
My dearest Maruja:
Your memory will remain with me to the grave and, as long as the
slightest throb stirs my heart, it will beat for love of you. God
has deemed fit to sublimate these worldly affections, ennobling them
when we love each other in him. Though in my final days, God is my
light and what I long for, this does not mean that the recollection
of the one dearest to me will not accompany me until the hour of my
I am assisted by many priests who -- what a sweet comfort -- pour
out the treasures of grace into my soul, strengthening it. I look
death in the eye and, believe my words, it does not daunt me or make
My sentence before the court of mankind will be my soundest defense
before God's court; in their effort to revile me, they have ennobled
me; in trying to sentence me, they have absolved me, and by
attempting to lose me, they have saved me. Do you see what I mean?
Why, of course! Because in killing me, they grant me true life and
in condemning me for always upholding the highest ideals of
religion, country and family, they swing open before me the doors of
My body will be buried in a grave in this cemetery of Jaen; while I
am left with only a few hours before that definitive repose, allow
me to ask but one thing of you: that in memory of the love we
shared, which at this moment is enhanced, that you would take on as
your primary objective the salvation of your soul. In that way, we
will procure our reuniting in heaven for all eternity, where nothing
will separate us.
Goodbye, until that moment, then, dearest Maruja! Do not forget that
I am looking at you from heaven, and try to be a model Christian
woman, since, in the end, worldly goods and delights are of no avail
if we do not manage to save our souls.
My thoughts of gratitude to all your family and, for you, all my
love, sublimated in the hours of death. Do not forget me, my Maruja,
and let my memory always remind you there is a better life, and that
attaining it should constitute our highest aspiration.
Be strong and make a new life; you are young and kind, and you will
have God's help, which I will implore upon you from his kingdom.
Goodbye, until eternity, then, when we shall continue to love each
other for life everlasting.
This page is the work of the Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and