Mariano Gomez

c.1788-1872. Chinese-Filipino priest and martyr. He had long defended his fellow priests in their just grievances against the friars. When in January 1872 Filipino soldiers and workers at the Cavite arsenal mutinied and killed their Spanish officers, the government and the friars used this as an opportunity to suppress all dissent. In this connection Gomez, with his colleagues Jose Burgos and Jacinto Zamora, was arrested, and following a secret trial with perjured witnesses, the three were garrotted before a large crowd in Manila. The governor-general requested Archbishop Martinez to unfrock them first, but he refused. The three martyred priests rapidly became a symbol of united nationalism. In 1904 they were canonized as saints of the Philippine Independent Church.