The youngest among the three Filipino Martyr Priests(Fathers Mariano Gomez,
Jose Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora), Father Jose Burgos was born in Vigan,
Ilocos Sur on February 9, 1837. His parents were Jose Burgos and Florencia
Young Jose's first teacher was his mother who taught him to read and write.
After finishing his elementary grades in Vigan in 1849, he went to Manila and
enrolled at the San Juan de Letran College where he excelled in all subjects.
At the age of 17, he finished Bachiller en Artes with honors.
He studied priesthood at the University of Santo Tomas and said his first
mass at the Parroquia del Sagrario de Intramuros.
For his courageous defense of the cause of Filipino priesthood, Father
Burgos earned for himself the name "Champion of the Cause of the Filipino
Clergy" but incurred the hatred of the Spanish friars. Thus, when the
Cavite mutiny broke out in 1872, the Spanish authorities arrested him together
with Father Gomes and Father Zamora, charging them of having incited
the revolution. After a mock trial at Fort Santiago on February 15, 1872,
they were sentenced to die by means of the garrote, a Spanish strangulation
by an iron collar tightened by a screw. On February 17, 1872, they were
executed in Bagumbayan, now the Luneta.
Source: Father Jose Burgos. National Bookstore.
Father Jose Apolonio Burgos
(1837 - 1872)
A brilliant scholar with several degrees after his name, Fr. Jose Apolonio Burgos was one of the ecclesiastical reformists of 1872 who
championed the cause of the Filipino clergy.
In 1853, he graduated at San Juan de Letran with a bachilerato and then took up priesthood against the wishes of his parents.
At the University of Santo Tomas, he obtained the degree of Bachelor of Theology (1859), Master of Philosophy (1860),
Master of Theology (1862), Bachelor of Canon Law (1866), and finally, Doctor of Canon Law(1871).
Having completed his secular studies, he became a parochial priest in Sagrario de Intramuros, an ecclesiastical fiscal and
magistral of the Manila Cathedral, and finally, a master of the claustral ceremony at the University of Santo Tomas.
He campaigned for the "secularization" of the parishes and for more liberal conditions in the Philippines through newspapers
published in Spain. He was recommended for elevation to the bishopric by the liberal party in power, the conservatives.
Along with Father Mariano Gomez and Jacinto Zamora, he was falsely implicated in the Cavite Mutiny of 1872.
Father Burgos was born on February 9, 1837 in Vigan, Ilocos Sur to Jose Burgos, a lieutenant of the Spanish militia, and
Dona Florentina Garcia. He had two sisters, Maria and Antonia.