Mgr. Gil Esteve i Tomàs (1798-1858)

Gil Esteve i Tomàs was born in Torà de Riubregós (county of la Segarra) in 1798. He took doctor's degree on the University of Cervera and, tidy priest, was vicarious general of the diocese of Barcelona (1831) and governor of that of Solsona (1846). In 1848 he blessed the first railroad of the Iberian Peninsula, between Barcelona and Mataró. This symbolic act denotes his character and his opened mentality. The same year he was nominated a bishop of San Juan of Puerto Rico. There he wrote a new study plan of the seminar, reconstructed the cathedral and several parishes and extended the bishop palace. Patient returned to the metropolis and stayed to the service of the Archdiocese of Tarragona. This way, on September 10, 1853 he gave the sacrament of the confirmation to the children of the parish of Sant Pere de Reus, among them Anton Gaudí. He was nominated a bishop of Tarazona (1855-1857) and after of Tortosa (1857-1858), where he founded the "Ecclesiastic Bulletin of the Bishopric" and regulated the life of the seminar. He died after a few months. The pope Pius IX and the queen Isabel II granted to him several distinctions of the Holy See and of the Hispanic monarchy.

Josep Maria Tarragona, October 16, 2006

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Last update: 06/05/2016