Born in San Esteban de los Patos (Ávila, Spain), on September 25, 1891, in a peasant family simple and rich in Christian virtues, he was given the name Mariano. Already as a child he felt the call to follow Christ as a priest and became a diocesan parish priest. Entering the Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, he took the religious name Juan Maria de la Cruz, by which he became known. Full of apostolic zeal, he dedicated much of his ministry to the Apostolic School in Puente la Reina, and was also a vocation promoter. The Spanish revolution of 1936 led him to testify to his faith and to declare his priestly state in the face of the burning of Saint John Church in Valencia. After a month in prison, where he ministered among his fellow prisoners, he was martyred in Silla (Valencia) on August 23, 1936. He was beatified by Pope John Paul II on March 11, 2001. He is patron of Dehonian vocations.