Coat of arms bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR

Coat of arms bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR

Alphonse Gallegos (February 20, 1931 – October 6, 1991), OAR, was a Roman Catholic bishop who was declared aServant of God in July 2008.

Gallegos was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico where his father was a carpenter, and his mother a homemaker caring for their 11 children. He had a twin brother, Eloy,[2] grew up in Watts, attended Manual Arts High School and receivedconfirmation from then auxiliary bishop Timothy Manning.[3] Gallegos, as a twin, was so intent on becoming a priest he built an altar in his parents’ home.[4]

Gallegos attended Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Tomas College and St. John’s University in New York and Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.[5] While a seminarian at the Tagaste Monastery in Suffern, New York, his superiors learned that Gallegos was born with a severe myopic condition.[6] He had eye surgery prior to entering the seminary but wore “Coke bottle thick glasses with his clerical garb” and was nearly blind.[7]

Early life

Bishop Alphonse Gallegos. O.A.R.

Bishop Alphonse Gallegos. O.A.R.

Gallegos was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico where his father was a carpenter, and his mother a homemaker caring for their 11 children. He had a twin brother, Eloy,[2] grew up in Watts, attended Manual Arts High School and receivedconfirmation from then auxiliary bishop Timothy Manning.[3] Gallegos, as a twin, was so intent on becoming a priest he built an altar in his parents’ home.[4]

Gallegos attended Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Tomas College and St. John’s University in New York and Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.[5] While a seminarian at the Tagaste Monastery in Suffern, New York, his superiors learned that Gallegos was born with a severe myopic condition.[6] He had eye surgery prior to entering the seminary but wore “Coke bottle thick glasses with his clerical garb” and was nearly blind.[7]

Episcopal appointments

Gallegos was ordained a Roman Catholic priest for the Augustinian Recollects on May 24, 1958. From 1970 to 1979 he served as pastor of San Miguel and Cristo Rey parishes in the Los Angeles diocese.[8] He was transferred to Sacramento where Gallegos served from 1979 to 1981 as the first director of the Division of Hispanic Affairs of the California Catholic Conference.[9][10]

On August 24, 1981, Pope John Paul II appointed Gallegos auxiliary bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, in Sacramento, California as the titular bishop of Sasabe.[11] He was ordained bishop on November 4, 1981 by Bishop Francis Quinn.[12][13]

Gallegos was the principal co-consecrator of Bishop David Arias Pérez, OAR, of the Archdiocese of Newark[14] on April 7, 1983.[15]

Death

On Oct. 6, 1991, Gallegos died when he was struck by a car[16] by the side of the road while returning to Sacramento from Gridley, California.[17][18] Because he was known as “the bishop of the barrio”,[19]approximately 300 lowrider cars drove in a procession before the bishop’s funeral Mass at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament.[20] The bishop was considered as an unofficial chaplain to lowriders and migrant workers.[21]

Process to sainthood

Bishop Alponse Gallegos’choir dress, cassock and rocheton loan to OLG from theAugustinian Recollects.

In 2005, after eleven months of scrutiny, the cause for Gallegos beatification was opened by Bishop William Weigand.[22]

In 2009 it was reported that the cause for Gallegos would be advanced. A testimony of his virtues along with reports of miracles attributed to the bishop’s intercession will be presented to the Vatican.[23]

On March 24, 2010, Gallegos’ body was exhumed and transferred to the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament at the request of the Augustinian Recollects.[24] This movement is being done as part of his cause towards sainthood.[25] On March 25, 2010, his remains were transferred to the parish he resided in as an auxiliary bishop.[26] This parish is theSanctuary of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe also known as Santuario Nacional de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe[27] in Sacramento. Along with Bishop Eugene O’Connell, he would be the second Sacramento area bishop whose remains were moved.[28] If declared a saint, he would become Sacramento’s first one.[29]

Coats of Arms Bishop Gallegos

Coats of arms bishop Gallegos. Heraldry. Ecclesiastical Heraldry.

Legacy

Because he was a Knight and supporter of the unborn, Bishop Gallegos Assembly 2336 [30] and Bishop Gallegos Maternity Home [31] are named for him. In 1997, the city of Sacramento erected a statue of the bishop and named the surrounding square area in his memory.[32]

  1. ^ Bishop Gallegos’ body will be moved to new tomb in bid for sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  2. ^ Alphonse Gallegos; Sacramento Bishop Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  3. ^ Beatification process opens for former L.A. pastor Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  4. ^ Supporters work to boost former Sacramento bishop closer to sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22. (from The Sacramento Bee Published Friday, July 17, 2009)
  5. ^ Alphonse Gallegos; Sacramento Bishop Retrieved: 2010-03-22
  6. ^ Beatification process opens for former L.A. pastor Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  7. ^ Supporters work to boost former Sacramento bishop closer to sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22. (from The Sacramento Bee Published Friday, July 17, 2009)
  8. ^ Beatification process opens for former L.A. pastor Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  9. ^ Ibid. Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  10. ^ Formal Closing of the Diocesan Process for the Cause of Canonization of Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OA Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  11. ^ Sasabe (Titular See) Sasabensis Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  12. ^ http://www.diocese-sacramento.org/diocese/lineage_bishops.html#quinn
  13. ^ http://www.augustinianrecollects.org/augsaints.html
  14. ^ http://www.catholic-hierarchy.org/bishop/bgallegos.html
  15. ^ http://www.catholic-hierarchy.org/bishop/barias.html
  16. ^ Alphonse Gallegos; Sacramento Bishop Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  17. ^ Supporters work to boost former Sacramento bishop closer to sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22. (from The Sacramento Bee Published Friday, July 17, 2009)
  18. ^ Bishop Gallegos’ body will be moved to new tomb in bid for sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  19. ^ Supporters work to boost former Sacramento bishop closer to sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22. (from The Sacramento Bee Published Friday, July 17, 2009)
  20. ^ Bishop Gallegos’ body will be moved to new tomb in bid for sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  21. ^ Ibid. Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  22. ^ Formal Closing of the Diocesan Process for the Cause of Canonization of Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OA
  23. ^ Supporters work to boost former Sacramento bishop closer to sainthood
  24. ^ Bishop Alphonse Gallegos remains moved in step toward sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-25.
  25. ^ Bishop’s Body Exhumed, Moved Downtown Gallegos May Be Considered For Sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-25.
  26. ^ Bishop’s Body Moved To Our Lady Of Guadalupe Church Leader Considered For Sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-25.
  27. ^ National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe ~ Santuario Nacional de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe Retrieved: 2010-03-22.
  28. ^ Bishop Gallegos’ body will be moved in bid for sainthood Retrieved: 2010-03-23.
  29. ^ Push For Sacramento Bishop To Become A Saint Retrieved: 2010-03-25.
  30. ^ BISHOP GALLEGOS ASSEMBLY 2336 Retrieved: 2010-03-26.
  31. ^ The Cause for Beatification of the Servant of God Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR Retrieved: 2010-03-25.
  32. ^ I feel as though I have met him also Retrieved: 2010-03-26.

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