In 1936, a cruel religious persecution broke out in Spain. A group of militant Atheist began killing Christians indiscriminately. They arrested a 16 year adolescent boy whose name was Santiago Mosquera, beat him savagely and threw him in jail. The next day, they brought him out, tied him to a stake and ordered, “Curse God and we will let you go.”
“Never, even if you kill me,” the boy replied.
They struck him, shouting, “Curse God!”
“You can hit me again. I won’t,” the boy cried.
Another slap opened the wound already made on his head and more blood flowed.
They then left him tied to the stake for two days, without food or drink. The boy moaned in pain.
When they returned, they continued tormenting him, “If you curse God as we do… you can eat and we’ll spare your life.”
“The boy closed his eyes and did not respond.”
“Open your eyes or I’ll shoot you.” One of the criminals howled at him, shoving a pistol into his stomach.
“I don’t want to see you,” the boy said in a weak voice.
“What? You don’t want to see us? Well, now you’ll see…stars,” the man screamed, and repeatedly lashed the boy’s face with a whip.
Finally, on the night of August 24, they took him and other Christian prisoners to the cemetery to be shot.
They lined them up against the wall and shot them. But the boy did not die, he was badly wounded from the gunshots. When the militants left, he tried to get up but was unable. Thus he spent the entire night among the corpses of his friends. In the morning, he heard footsteps of someone approaching. It was the gravedigger.
Confidence grew in the boy’s heart and his heart beat with anxiety. He spoke in a weak voice, ‘Have mercy, good man and help me.” But the gravedigger, who was also an Atheist, when he heard the boy, knew he was there because he was a Christian and responded with a vile and merciless yell, “Curse God now and I will help you!” Once again the boy refused.
The gravedigger’s wrath kindled and he threatened to kill him if he does not blaspheme.
“I would rather die than offend God,” the boy said, his tears mingling with the blood flowing from his head. The gravedigger then violently took a pick axe and with a single blow killed the boy.
According to various witnesses, after the war, the whereabouts of the boy’s body was unknown. Then it was discovered miraculously… his face reflected the serenity and peace, peace of his having remained faithful to Christ to the end and received the everlasting crown.