Marcelo Spinola y Maestre

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His Eminence Blessed
Marcelo Spinola y Maestre
Archbishop of Seville
Retablo - Beato Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (San Fernando) - 01.jpg
Archdiocese Seville
Metropolis Seville
See Seville
Appointed 2 December 1895
Installed 1896
Term ended 20 January 1906
Predecessor Benito Sanz y Fores
Successor Salvador Castellote y Pinazo
Ordination 21 March 1864
by Luis de la Lastra y Cuesta
Consecration 6 February 1881
by Joaquín Lluch y Garriga
Created Cardinal 11 December 1905
by Pope Pius X
Rank Cardinal-Priest (no title assigned)
Personal details
Birth name Marcelo Rafael José María de los Dolores Hilario Spinola y Maestre
Born (1835-01-14)14 January 1835
San Fernando, Cádiz Province, Spain
Died 20 January 1906(1906-01-20) (aged 71)
Seville, Spain
Previous post
Motto Omni possum in eo ("All I can do")
Feast day 19 January
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Title as Saint Blessed
Beatified 29 March 1987
Saint Peter's Square, Vatican City
by Pope John Paul II
Styles of
Marcelo Spinola y Maestre
External Ornaments of a Cardinal Bishop.svg
Reference style His Eminence
Spoken style Your Eminence
Informal style Cardinal
See Seville

Blessed Marcelo Rafael José María de los Dolores Hilario Spinola y Maestre (14 January 1835 - 20 January 1906) was a Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church who served as the Archbishop of Seville. He established the Handmaids of the Divine Heart.

He was beatified in 1987 and his canonization cause is still pending.


Early life and education[edit]

Marcelo Spínola was born on the island of San Fernando in Cádiz Province on 14 January 1835 at 6:00am.

His parents were Juan Spínola y Osorno, Marquis of Spínola[1] and Antonia Maestre y Osorno; they had eight children, of whom four died in infancy. He was baptized the following day in the military parish of San Fernando by the military chaplain of the second battalion of the Real Cuerpo de Artillería de la Marina. His last name is also listed as Espínola.

He did his initial studies in the school of San Fernando, directed by priests from 1843-1845; then at the Colegio Santo Tomás in Cádiz, 1845-1846 where he studied Latin, Spanish and French grammar and basic philosophy. He then went to the school of Motril, where his father had been transferred from 1846-1847. He went on to the school in Granada, 1847-1848, where he studied physics, chemistry and natural history. He then went to the University of Valencia from 1849-1852 and the University of Seville, graduating on the 29 June 1856.

He opened a law office in Huelva, offering free services to the poor. He moved to Sanlúcar de Barrameda when his father was transferred to that city as chief of the port. He decided to follow his sacerdotal vocation on the advice of Canon Diego Herrero y Espinosa de los Monteros and began to study theology at home. He received the ecclesiastical tonsure on 29 May 1863 and the diaconate on 20 February 1864.

Priesthood and Episcopate[edit]

He was ordained on 21 March 1864. He did pastoral work in the archdiocese of Seville from 1864 in various parishes until 1880.

He was appointed titular bishop of Milos and auxiliary bishop of Seville by Pope Leo XIII on 16 December 1880. He was transferred to the diocese of Coria on 10 November 1884, and to the diocese of Málaga on 10 June 1886. He was promoted to the metropolitan see of Seville on 2 December 1895. He served as a Senator of the Spanish Kingdom from 1891 to 1894, and from 1898 until his death.

Cardinalate and death[edit]

He was created a cardinal by Pope Pius X in the consistory of 11 December 1905. He was made a Cardinal-Priest but with no title assigned to him.

Spinola died at noon on 20 January 1906 in Seville. On 24 January 1913, his remains were transferred to a new mausoleum built in the chapel of Dolores in the same cathedral.


The cause of beatification commenced on 19 February 1956 under Pope Pius XII and began on a diocesan level in the Archdiocese of Seville. The Positio - which documented his life of heroic virtue - was submitted to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in 1978. This culminated with the decree of heroic virtue on 24 September 1983 in which Pope John Paul II bestowed upon him the title of Venerable.

A miracle attributed to his intercession was investigated and ratified in 1985 with documentation sent to Rome. John Paul II confirmed the miracle on 10 November 1986 and it led to his beatification on 29 March 1987.

Another miracle was then under investigation in Jaén on a diocesan level from 11 April 2011 to 7 April 2013. The documentation must be submitted to Rome and approved prior to canonization.


Preceded by
Benito Sanz y Fores
Archbishop of Seville
2 December 1895–20 January 1906
Succeeded by
Salvador Castellote y Pinazo