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Archdiocese of Linares



[Or MONTEREY or NUEVO LEÓN; ARCHDIOCESE OF (DE LINARES)]

In 1777, at the request of Charles III of Spain, Pius VII erected the episcopal See of Linares as suffragan of the Archdiocese of Mexico. Its first bishop was Fra Antonio di Gesu, O.E.M. For reasons of ecclesiastical administration the see was raised to archiepiscopal rank by Leo XIII, 23 June, 1891, with San Luis Potosi, Saltillo, and Tamaulipas, or Ciudad de Victoria, as suffragans. Monterey, the cathedral town and residence of the archbishop, is the capital of the State of Nuevo León, Mexico. It is situated about 1600 feet above sea-level, and in 1900 it had a population of 62,266, ranking as sixth city in the republic. Its streets are handsome, well paved and clean, and the suburbs are famous for the beauty of their gardens and orchards. The principal buildings include the fine cathedral, a spacious seminary, schools of law and medicine, and elaborate public schools where education is free and compulsory, as it is throughout the republic, though the law on this head cannot always be enforced. Owing to improved railway facilities the trade of Monterey is very active, as it lies in the heart of a rich agricultural district, and the neighbourhood abounds in silver mines and metalliferous ores. The town was founded by the Spaniards in 1581 and long bore the name of León. In September, 1846, during the war between the United States and Mexico, General Taylor with 6700 men assaulted Monterey, which was defended by General Ampudia and 10,000 Mexicans. It capitulated on 24 September, and the battle of Monterey is famous owing to the very liberal terms of capitulation granted by General Taylor.

The town of Linares from which the archdiocese derives its ecclesiastical name is situated on the left hank of the River Tigris about fifty miles from Monterey. The population of the archdiocese is 327,937, and includes the whole of the State of Nuevo León, an area of 23,592 sq. miles.

The chapter consists of a dean and four canons: there are eighty secular priests, and seventy-five churches: the seminary contains twenty students. The present archbishop is Rt. Rev. Leopold Ruiz y Flórez, born at Amealco in the Diocese of Queretaro, 13 November, 1865, appointed to León 1 October, 1900, and transferred to Monterey 14 September, 1907. He succeeded Archbishop Garefa Zambrano, a native of Monterey who had occupied the see from 19 April, 1900. The See of Linares was originally in the hands of the Friars Minor, and among the members of that order who succeeded its first bishop, Fray Antonio de Jesús, were Fray R.J. Verger (1782-1791); Andrew Ambrose de Llanos y Valdes (1791-1801); Prima Feliciano Mann di Tamaros (1801-1817); Jos. Ign. de Aranciva (1817-1831); José de Jesús (1831-1848). In the archdiocese there is 1 college with 50 students; 2 schools under the care of the Brothers of Mary with 250 boys; 2 schools (Christian Brothers), 400 pupils; 3 academies (Sisters of the Incarnate Word), 230 pupils; 2 academies (Salesian Sisters), 190 pupils; 1 academy, the Religious of the Sacred heart, 30 pupils; 7 parochial schools; 2 orphan asylums; 1 hospital; 1 home for the aged. Population practically all Catholic.

J. C. Grey.








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