Benjamín de Arriba y Castro

Category: Bishop
Birth Date: 1886 (†13 de febrero de 1973)
Birth Place: A Ferrería

He moved to Madrid with his parents when he was nine and began to study at ‘PP. Escolapios de San Antonio Abad’ School. Then he entered the Seminary. After finishing his philosophical courses, he studied at the Spanish Pontifical School in Rome by means of a grant. Four years later, he took a doctor’s degree in Holy Theology (Gregorian University of Rome) and Philosophy (St Thomas Pontifical Academy of Rome). Besides, he studied Holy Scripture for a year at the Biblical Pontifical Institute and took a degree in Canon Law at the Pontifical University of Toledo. He was ordained as a priest on 14th July 1912. From 1913 to 1921, he filled the chairs of Methodology and Historical Criticism, Classic Greek, Hebrew and Fundamental Theology in the Seminary of Madrid. He was the Chamber and Government secretary in the bishopric of Madrid until 1930 that he was nominated as vicar-general. On 1st May 1935, he was preconized bishop of Mondoñedo and Dr. D Leopoldo Eijo Garay consecrated him in the Cathedral of Madrid on 16th June 1935. On 19th June, he took over the Diocese of Mondoñedo, running for nine years. On 8th August 1944, he was nominated as bishop of Oviedo, filling the office for over four years. During his pontificate, he promoted spiritual retreat, created the Choir School and expressed his wishes for Covadonga. After being preconized archbishop of Tarragona, he took up the post on 22nd January 1949. On 12th January 1953, Pío XII nominated him as cardinal and conferred him the title of St Vital Roman Church, one of the oldest in Rome.

 Work & Activities

He published important pastorals such as Juventud y aspirantazgos de Acción Católica, La religión y los problemas actuales, La Santa Cuaresma y la Semana Mayor, Los deberes del ministerio eclesiástico, El misterio de la Redención, Las nuevas bases de Acción Católica, Juventudes y Arciprestazgos, Los deberes del ministerio eclesiástico, El Misterio de la Santísima Eucaristía, El mes del Rosario, El Seminario and Adveniat Regnum tuum, among others. During the practise of his priesthood, he carried out many social works and directed many ecclesiastical celebrations.

 Other Interesting Aspects

He was awarded many decorations such as the Cross of the Naval Merit, the Cross of Isabel the Catholic Queen, the Cross of the Order of Alfonso X the Wise King, the Cross of San Raimundo de Peñafort Civil Order, the Cross of Carlos III Order, the Cross of the Military Merit, Youth Gold Medal, Tarragona Gold Medal, Duarte Medal (Dominican Republic). He was ‘honorary citizen’ of Lugo, Alforja, Montblanc, Riudoms, Ferrol and Cardedeu, where he spent his last years until his death.