History

Origin

Our Congregation, by a special design of God, was founded by the Mother María Amada del Niño Jesús (María Regina Sanchez Muñoz), a religious of the Order of the Incarnate Word and the Blessed Sacrament, in the city of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, in 1926 during the religious persecution experienced by the Mexican Nation.

1. Ecclesiastical approvals

  1. Pia Union: Awarded to our Institute by Decree of March 12, 1941, by the Archbishop of Mexico, Mr. Luis María Martínez.
     
  2. Diocesan: Granted by Rescript of June 25, 1947, under the pontificate of His Holiness Pius XII. The Archbishop Primate of Mexico, D. Luis María Martínez made the canonical erection with a Decree of September 5, 1947.
     
  1. Pontifical: It was given to us with the "Praise Decree" by His Holiness Paul VI on July 29, 1964.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To understand the origins of our Congregation it is necessary to put ourselves in the historical context in which it is born. Mexico is not understood without the presence of the Virgin of Guadalupe, who forged and gave consistency to the Mexican nation, which has been the scene of struggles, internal guerrillas and invasions throughout its history, including those of faith; one of them better known as the persecution or Cristero Revolution, in which the Catholic Church in Mexico was persecuted and attacked; causing many believers to courageously defend their faith; but at the same time, all this accentuated with more intensity and clairvoyance, the intervention of divine grace that always assists its Church through its "charisms" and arouses new forces, which lead it to the path of salvation.

The origin of our Congregation of Missionaries of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Saint Mary of Guadalupe, framed in times of religious persecution[1], leads us to briefly examine this complex period of our Homeland, between the years 1926 - 1929, but which lasts until 1942, and could still be said, to this day.

President Álvaro Obregón at the beginning of his government restored to the Church all the closed temples and tried to be conciliatory; but when Plutarco Elías Calles began his government, he took a violent side, and the confrontation became inevitable.

Calles and his supporters, on June 14, 1926, stated their project to enforce the 1917 Constitution to the letter; legislation that is known as the “Calles Law”. It consisted of 33 articles, insisting on compliance with articles 3, 5, 24, 27 and 130; imposing rigorous sanctions on violators and announcing Calles' project to attack the Catholic Church by stripping it of its material assets[2]. This led to conflict erupting; The Catholic defense was organized and sustained by the youth of the A.C.J.M. (Catholic Association of Mexican Youth), branch of Catholic Action, organization titled as “National League Defender of Religious Freedom”, (LNDLR) and the participation of priests, as well as numerous faithful who felt the urgency to defend their faith and his Homeland, uniting for the defense and protection of the faith, acclaiming Christ the King, the Blessed Virgin[3], especially in the states of Jalisco, Michoacán, Guanajuato, Zacatecas, Durango, Veracruz, among others. Likewise, the Mexican Episcopate was victim of the siege, persecution, expulsion and insults; Examples of this are: the Primate Archbishop of Mexico, Dr. D. José Mora y del Río; the Servant of God, D. Francisco Orozco y Jiménez, Archbishop of Guadalajara; Bishop Leopoldo Ruiz y Flores; the Hon. Mr. Bishop José María González y Valencia, of the Diocese of Durango; and the Hon. Mr. Bishop, San Rafael Guízar y Valencia, Bishop of Veracruz.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The school was the great battleground of the liberal forces that imposed secular "socialist" teaching at all costs. And the counter-attack was constituted by the forces of Catholicism against atheism, Protestantism and socialism. In the same way, the attack had as its center the authority of Rome, the school and the press. It is said that between 1934 and 1935 more than 500 confiscations of churches and ecclesiastical buildings were made, almost 400 churches withdrawn from worship, leaving 305 authorized priests throughout the country and in 17 states they did not tolerate even one in their territory.[4]

The results of this cruel persecution, in broad strokes, are for many of us, well known: Catholic Church victorious, and not defeated; numerous martyrs that we venerate today on the altars and, without a doubt, the flourishing and fortification of the faith; and the strongest confidence in the maternal protection of Saint Mary of Guadalupe.

 

   

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Within this context, Mother María Amada del Niño Jesús, receives a call from God to strengthen the hurt faith of believers, so that even being a religious of the Order of the Incarnate Word and of the Blessed Sacrament in August 1923; while the whole Community does the Spiritual Exercises led by R. P. Lázaro Valadez, of the Society of Jesus (SJ). From this date he will be their spiritual director for several decades. Towards 1924, she wrote to the Father regarding a light that she had perceived years ago about his departure from the Order: “I understood that my Jesus said to me: You will have to go out and then you will find the light. I will give you a soul of the children of my Company that will take you to Me”[5]. He also communicates: “More than a year ago, His Majesty told me: The persecution against the Church will be terrible in Mexico; then you will have to go out again and you will start my Work ”[6]. This is the beginning of a new path of discernment that you will carry out with the help of your spiritual director. At this stage, from 1925 to 1930, he does spiritual exercises two or three times a year, sometimes at his parents' house and others in his community; almost always with the express objective of discerning the will of God regarding the foundation.[7]

In August 1926, the Incarnate Word community dispersed due to persecution and Sister Maria Amada was sent to her parents' house. In June of this same year, the President of the Republic, Mr. Plutarco Elías Calles, promulgated the so-called “Calles Law”.[8]

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

This is how the nascent Work, had as its cradle the house of the parents of Mother María Amada: Mr. Don Catarino Sánchez and Mrs. Matiana Muñoz de Sánchez, located on Calle Juan Álvarez, No. 1039, who with great charity and zeal, helped support the aspirants. They were true parents for the Work, without sparing any sacrifice, all of the family lent themselves to help it in the same way.

 

           

 

Under these circumstances, God allowed the new foundation to begin at the end of 1926, as she was a religious of the said Community; Despite this, the first trial of this Work was verified in the municipality of Zapopan, Jalisco, where the first three young people called by God settled to start the Work expressed; which originally had these purposes:1st. The own sanctification of all its members; 2nd. Teaching poor children especially, and those of the middle class. 3rd. Attention to the most abandoned souls, through Catechesis.In this first stage, people began to call them "the nuns of Christ the King", but the owner, realizing that they were possible nuns, did not want to take the risk and fired them; Later they will have Mr. Ramón Garibay as a benefactor in Guadalajara. Her community became aware of this situation and did not approve what was happening, giving rise to numerous conflicts that would eventually lead Bishop Orozco and Jiménez to grant him a pardon for secularization, on October 14, 1930, so that she moved to the Capital, Mexico City.


Already in the Capital, María Amada is still devoid of what was materially essential to maintain and install the community. He soon presented himself with the Vicar of Religious, RP Carlos Máyer, SJ, to talk to him about the project that he had already started, he listened to her with request and offered his support, so at the first opportunity he recommended it with Mr. Alfredo Freyría, Canon of Puebla, who proposes that he take over a school for poor girls in the City of Puebla. Mother Maria Amada accepts full of hope, and on January 12, 1931, the group of young people arrived in that City, living next to its founder for the first time. There were twelve who formed this first community, including the Mother. A day before they had consecrated themselves to Saint Mary of Guadalupe, in the Tepeyac, there María Amada lived a spiritual experience that left her with the certainty that Saint Mary of Guadalupe was the Patroness and Mother of the nascent Congregation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Puebla they work the entire school year, but following the suggestions of the priests who supported her, she decided to return to the Capital to give the sisters a better opportunity for formation. At the end of November 1931, the community returned to Mexico City and settled on Calle Jardín Hidalgo, No. 6, in the center of Azcapotzalco, where the Community continued to grow in such a way that by December they were already 30 youth. Thus beginning, the establishment of the Foundation in Mexico City, where they have to live strong experiences of religious persecution and flee to avoid being apprehended.

The Mother intensifies her prayer and promotes in the Community an intense campaign of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, in reparation for the evils that the Church was suffering and to implore, before this reality, the reign of the Heart of Jesus in Mexico.

On December 2, 1934, a very painful event occurs for Maria Amada, but at the same time a moment of grace, due to the transcendence that she had providentially for the Work of the Heart of Jesus. Her father, who was visiting the Community, becomes seriously ill and the sisters go to the Parish of the Holy Apostles Felipe and Santiago, looking for a Priest to help him spiritually in his agony. They find the young Vicar Priest, Father Teodosio Martínez Ramos, who comes with a request to care for the sick. That same day Don Catarino died, who was always very close, affectionate and related to his daughter María.

That first meeting of Maria Amada with Father Teodosio Martínez Ramos represents a historic and transcendent moment, since he will be “the chosen one”, to found the male branch of the Work that the Heart of Jesus will ask of him.

In 1935, unable to work at the College, she began another way of carrying out her educational mission: with the agreement of the Pastor of the Holy Apostles Felipe and Santiago in Azcapotzalco, Don Elías Palomino and supported by the Unique Front of Parents, She founded the "Home Centers" to continue attending, now clandestinely, the education of children.

 

 

 

 

Mother Maria Amada continues to lead the group of future religious on Pino Suárez street. There she lived important events, both personal and in relation to the work. Before the end of the year, the community was denounced and, after a few weeks of dispersal the young sisters met at a new address on Calle de Heraldo No. 27 where they will remain only for a few months, but because of a new complaint they sneaked out on December 27, thanks to the fact that Father Teodosio Martínez notified Mother about the risk they were running. At the beginning of 1936, they settled in Calle Belisario Domínguez No. 37. In this year there were already 38 young women who made up the community, which made it difficult to disguise their presence and activity before the civil authorities. It is then that María Amada saw the need to open two new houses in the same Azcapotzalco area: one to attend to internal girls and the other for internal ones, leaving Belisario Domínguez as Mother House. This was where she received the ecclesiastical approval of the Congregation as Pious Union, on March 12, 1941, with the name of Missionaries of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and of Saint Mary of Guadalupe. From this house she sent -in a few years- the sisters who would found the communities of Durango, in Durango state; Perote and Coscomatepec, in Veracruz state (these two at the request of Mr. Bishop, today San Rafael Guízar and Valencia); Miguel Auza, Zacatecas state and San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas state.

 

 

 

At the end of 1937, in the aforementioned house on Calle Belisario Domínguez, Mother María Amada gathered a group of children to initiate them in formation, since they would be the first students of the Apostolic School of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart and of Saint Mary of Guadalupe, whose foundation took place in a house very close to the one the sisters lived in, on June 28, 1938; day when Father Teodosio Martínez Ramos took over the group as Founder and first Superior General of the male branch, as she understood it to be the express will of the Heart of Jesus. In a few years the number of those entering this work was growing, so an adequate space for the seminary of future Missionaries was urgent.

Until 1942 the community did not have its own house; so at the end of this year, the owner of the house they rented in Belisario Domínguez, demanded that the Mother vacate it immediately. Providentially and in a timely manner, Mr. Fortunato Carraro had donated to Father Teodosio Martínez a piece of land in Colonia Cosmopolita, for the construction of the seminary and the sisters' house [9]. In mid-April 1943, the community moved to its new home on Avenida Ceylán, where mother and daughters had to carry out arduous tasks to condition the place and continue the construction supported by everything from Catarino Sánchez. Currently it is better known as the Mother House, where the General Government of the Congregation was until 1990, when they moved to the center of Azcapotzalco where the General House is currently located.

 

 

 

 

 


[1] Constituciones MSCGpe, Cap. I art. 1 b.

[2] México a través de los siglos Tomo IV p 332.

[3] Ibíd. P 113.

[4] Ibíd. P. 38

[5] Cuenta de Conciencia, AMASM, Caja 14, Exp. 10, p. 8

[6] Ibid. Caja 14, Exp. 5, p. 180.

[7] Ibid. Caja 14, Exp. 10, p. 33.

[8] GUTIERREZ, C. José. Historia de la Iglesia en México, México, 1993, Edit. Porrúa. pp. 142-144.

[9] BRAVO, R. Berenice. De nobles y grandes aspiraciones, México 2011, Edit. Color, pp. 116-118.

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