Bishop of Córdoba in Argentina, of the Order of Friars Minor

Saturday 4 September 2021, Catamarca- Argentina


The Venerable Servant of God Mamerto Esquiú was born on 11 May 1826 in San José de Piedra Blanca (Argentina). In 1841 he entered the novitiate of the Friars Minor of the Asunción Province and made his religious profession on 14 July 1842. On 18 October 1848, he was ordained a priest. From then on, he devoted himself to teaching, the direction of souls and preaching. In the latter ministry, he was greatly appreciated, not only by Catholics but also in liberal circles: two of his important speeches on the theme of peace and brotherhood, delivered in 1852, were printed and circulated on the initiative of the Federal Government. In a spirit of service to the common good, Brother Mamerto also accepted an active political role as a deputy and member of the Council of Government of Catamarca. In 1862, wishing to resume a more regular Franciscan life, he moved as an apostolic missionary to Bolivia, where he taught theology at the Sucre seminary. In 1870 the Argentine Senate proposed him as a candidate for the episcopate for the archepiscopal see of Buenos Aires. Feeling unworthy, the Venerable Servant of God preferred to leave his homeland, to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and to Assisi and Rome. Here he received from the Minister General of the Order, Father Bernardino da Portogruaro, the task of promoting common life among the Friars Minor of Argentina. In 1879 the Senate again proposed his candidature as Bishop of Cordoba. Therefore, in obedience to the Pope, Brother Mamerto accepted and was consecrated Bishop on 12 December 1880. He distinguished himself for his doctrine and authority in his ministry and proposed holiness as the heart of Christian and priestly life. He worked for the spiritual and material help of the poor, the formation of seminarians, the foundation of confraternities and associations of the faithful, the preaching of courses of spiritual exercises and missions to the people. He died on 10 January 1883 in Posta del Suncho (Argentina).

The decree on his heroic virtue was promulgated on 16 December 2006.

The letter of the Minister General