Isidore the Labourer, also known as Isidore the Farmer Spanish: San Isidro Labrador 19th Century Mexican Retablo #173

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  • Isidore the Labourer, also known as Isidore the Farmer. Spanish: San Isidro Labrador (c. 1070 – 15 May 1130), was a Spanish Farmworker known for his Piety toward the Poor and Animals. He is the Patron saint of Farmers, and of the City of Madrid.
  • Isidore was born in Madrid, around year 1070 or 1082, to poor devout parents, and was christened Isidore after name of their Patron, St. Isidore of Seville. In 1083 or 1085, the troops of Alfonso VI of León and Castile conquered Madrid from the Muslim Taifa of Toledo. Isidore spent his life as a hired hand in the service of the wealthy Madrilenian landowner, Juan de Vargas, on a farm in the city's vicinity.
  • Isidore married Maria Torribia, known as Santa María de la Cabeza in Spain; she has never been Canonized, pending confirmation by Pope Francis. Isidore and Maria had one son. On one occasion, their son fell into a deep well, and at the Prayers of his parents, the water of the well is said to have risen miraculously to the level of the ground, bringing the child with it. In Thanksgiving, Isidore and Maria then vowed sexual abstinence and lived in separate houses. Their son later died in his youth.
  • Isidore died on 15 May 1130, at his birthplace close to Madrid, although the only official source places his death in the year 1172.
  • Miracle stories

    St Isidore and St. Maria
    In the morning before going to work, Isidore would usually attend Mass at one of the churches in Madrid. One day, his fellow farm workers complained to their master that Isidore was always late for work in the morning. Upon investigation the master found Isidore at prayer while an angel was doing the ploughing for him.

    On another occasion, his master saw an angel ploughing on either side of him, so that Isidore's work was equal to that of three of his fellow field workers. Isidore is also said to have brought back to life his master's deceased daughter, and to have caused a fountain of fresh water to burst from the dry earth to quench his master's thirst.

    One snowy day, when going to the mill with wheat to be ground, he passed a flock of wood-pigeons scratching vainly for food on the hard surface of the frosty ground. Taking pity on the poor animals, he poured half of his sack of precious wheat upon the ground for the birds, despite the mocking of witnesses. When he reached the mill, however, the bag was full, and the wheat, when it was ground, produced double the expected amount of flour.

    Isidore's wife, Maria, always kept a pot of stew on the fireplace in their humble home as Isidore would often bring home anyone who was hungry. One day he brought home more hungry people than usual. After she served many of them, Maria told him that there simply was no more stew in the pot. He insisted that she check the pot again, and she was able to spoon out enough stew to feed them all.

  • Retablo dimensions: Framed are approx. 15.75 inches vertical x 11.75 inches. Retablo itself is 14" x 10" horizontal.