The Info List - Patrick Flores

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Styles of Patrick Flores

Reference style The Most Reverend

Spoken style His Excellency

Religious style Monsignor

Posthumous style not applicable

Patrick Fernández Flores (July 26, 1929 – January 9, 2017), was a Roman Catholic
Roman Catholic
cleric who from 1979 to 2004 was the Archbishop
of San Antonio, Texas. Flores was the first Mexican American
Mexican American
to become a bishop of the Catholic Church.


1 Early life 2 As bishop and archbishop 3 June 2000 hostage situation 4 Film 5 Death 6 References 7 Resources

Early life[edit] Flores was born in 1929 to Patrico and Trinidad Fernandez de Flores, American migrant workers, in Ganado, Texas. In the tenth grade he considered dropping out of school after his father had become ill, but he was persuaded to stay after a bishop agreed to finance his education. He worked as a janitor at a local cantina and decided to make the world a cleaner and more habitable place by becoming a priest. He graduated from Catholic Kirwin High School (now O'Connell Consolidated High School) in Galveston, Texas. He studied at St. Mary's Seminary in La Porte, Texas
and at St. Mary's Seminary in Houston. He received his divinity degree and was ordained a priest on May 26, 1956 by bishop Wendelin Joseph Nold in Galveston. He then served as a parish priest in the Diocese of Galveston-Houston. In the early 1960s, he directed the Christian Family Movement in the Galveston-Houston diocese and the Bishop's Committee for the Spanish Speaking, a ministry that encouraged bilingual congregations. Later, in October 1969, Flores joined forty-seven other Hispanic priests to establish PADRES
Padres Asociados para Derechos Religiosos, Educativos, y Sociales (Spanish for "Priests Associated for Religious, Education, and Social Rights"), an organization meant to draw attention to the problems of Hispanics in the church and society. As bishop and archbishop[edit] On May 5, 1970 he was consecrated a bishop by Archbishop
Luigi Raimondi. He was appointed auxiliary to the archbishop of San Antonio. Also in May 1970, Flores was appointed chairman of the Texas
State Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, and that July he became national chaplain for the League of United Latin American Citizens. In 1972, he was co-founder and honorary chairman of the Mexican-American Cultural Center in San Antonio. In 1978 he was appointed bishop of the Roman Catholic
Roman Catholic
Diocese of El Paso and then in 1979 the Archbishop
of the Roman Catholic
Roman Catholic
Archdiocese of San Antonio, which was, at the time, the largest ecclesiastical province in the United States. In 1980, Flores became a member of the Hispanic Caucus Committee, and in 1981, he founded Catholic Television of San Antonio, the first diocesan television station in the United States. In 1997, when Billy Graham headlined a religious crusade at the Alamodome, Flores taped radio spots in English and Spanish to promote the event. Graham later credited Flores for the large response from the area's largely Catholic Hispanic community. Flores' suit against the city of Boerne, Texas
in his bid to expand St. Peter's Church there led to the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision City of Boerne v. Flores
City of Boerne v. Flores
(1997), which struck down certain provisions of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act
Religious Freedom Restoration Act
of 1993 as unconstitutionally exceeding the powers granted to the Congress under Section Five of the Fourteenth Amendment. After reaching the mandatory retirement age of 75, Flores retired from his position on December 29, 2004 and became Archbishop
emeritus. His motto was Laborabo non mihi sed omnibus, "I will work not for myself but for others".[2] June 2000 hostage situation[edit] On June 27, 2000, Nelson Antonio Escolero, a native of El Salvador
El Salvador
and a legal U.S. resident, held Flores hostage for over nine hours in his office in the Catholic Chancery. Escolero had been arrested for driving with a suspended license and feared that he would be deported. Armed with a fake grenade, he also held the archbishop's secretary Myrtle Sanchez for the first two hours of the stand-off. Police hostage negotiators had been in contact with Escolero throughout the day, but were taken by surprise when he released Flores and surrendered in the evening.[3] Film[edit] On October 6, 2007, A Migrant's Masterpiece an hour-long documentary depicting Flores' life premiered in San Antonio. Directed by Hector Galan, it seeks to place the archbishop's life in the context of "the history of Latinos in Texas, [and] the Civil Rights Movement in Texas" according to Pat Rogers, communications director for the Archdiocese of San Antonio. The film was funded through private donations to the Archdiocese and uses rare archival film and interviews with the Flores' family. It is set to air on American public television in the future.[4] Death[edit] Flores died on January 9, 2017, of congestive heart failure and pneumonia at the Padua retirement home in San Antonio.[5]

Catholic Church
Catholic Church

Preceded by None Titular Bishop
of Italica May 5, 1970 – May 29, 1978 Succeeded by James Robert Hoffman

Preceded by Sidney Matthew Metzger Bishop
of El Paso May 29, 1978 – October 13, 1979 Succeeded by Raymundo Joseph Peña

Preceded by Francis James Furey Archbishop
of San Antonio August 23, 1979 – December 29, 2004 Succeeded by José Horacio Gómez


^ " Archbishop
Patrick Fernández Flores †". www.catholic-hierarchy.org. Retrieved March 20, 2017.  ^ " Archbishop
Patrick Flores". Archived from the original on January 14, 2006.  ^ Holley, Joe (June 29, 2000). "Thank God!; Archbishop
freed unharmed after 9 hours". Express-News. Retrieved October 21, 2007.  ^ Knapp, Deborah (September 28, 2007). " Archbishop
Emeritus Patrick Flores' life featured in film". KENS 5 Eyewitness News. Retrieved October 21, 2007. [dead link] ^ Shadrock, Chris (January 9, 2017). "Former Archbishop
Patrick Flores dies at 87". KSAT-12. Retrieved January 9, 2017. 


Davidson, John. "A Simple Man". Texas
Monthly. Vol. 1981 no. July. p. 127 et. seq.  Special
section - San Antonio Express-News Bishop
Flores at Catholic hierarchy Biography at jrank.org Biogra