St. Toribio Alfonso Mogrovejo
Archbishop of Lima; b. at Mayorga, León, Spain, 1538; d. near Lima Peru, 23 March 1606.
Of noble family and highly educated, he was professor of laws at the University of Salamanca, where his learning and virtue led to his appointment as Grand Inquisitor of Spain by Philip II and, though not of ecclesiasticalrank, to his subsequent selection for the Archbishopric of Peru. He received Holy Orders in 1578 and two years later was consecrated bishop. He arrived at Payta, Peru, 600 miles from Lima, on 24 May, 1581. He began his mission work by travelling to Lima on foot, baptizing and teaching the natives. His favourite topic being: “Time is not our own, and we must give a strict account of it.” Three times he traversed the eighteen thousand miles of his diocese, generally on foot, defenceless and often alone; exposed to tempests, torrents, deserts, wild beasts, tropical heat, fevers, and savage tribes; baptizing and confirming nearly one half million souls, among them St. Rose of Lima, St. Francis Solano, Blessed Martin of Porres, and Blessed Masias. He built roads, school houses, and chapelsinnumerable, and many hospitals and convents, and founded the first American seminary at Lima in 1591. He assembled thirteen diocesansynods and three provincial councils. Continue reading