Oil Dedicated to Martyrs of Daimiel
On July 21, 1936 in the monastery of Martyrs of Daimiel were 31 men, mostly students preparing for ordination and expecting to be sent to Mexico or Cuba. Most were aged 18-21.
The oldest member of the community was 54. Niceforo was 43. At 11:30 pm came a knock at the door in disguise. He returned to Spain via a ship sailing from Hoboken, New Jersey. It was natural to make a stop in Union City, then known as West Hoboken. While he was there, the editor of The Sign magazine asked him to write a piece about the visit to Mexico.
The resulting article began with the words, “At last after much traveling, I am back at our beautiful monastery, here in Zaragoza.”.
Niceforo went on to describe the sufferings of the Mexican Church, including a touching description of a secret Eucharist to which he was directed by a woman selling fruits and vegetables outside a closed church.
The article appeared in the August issue of The Sign. By that time the Spanish Civil War had broken out and the author was already dead. The community gathered in the chapel. Niceforo addressed them, gave general absolution and distributed Communion. The group then processed to the doors. The soldiers were waiting outside. The demand to abandon the monastery and the church was repeated.
However, at the cemetery the captives were let go free, with orders to keep moving and never return to the area. At the same time, the soldiers sent out messages that the religious were to be shot on sight.