The case of Bishop Irurita had been an enigma until 1943.

Concise recap. After a few days of the outbreak of civil war, the prelate immediately obtained refuge in the house of Antoni Tort, jeweler of the Mercè church. He kept him hidden until December 1, when militiamen searched his home, arrested him and locked him up in Sant Elies prison. On the night of the 3rd to the 4th they shot him in the Montcada i Reixac cemetery; the grave remained unknown. At the end of the war, the remains were said to have been located and identified. So far the first version.

On December 2, 1943, the burial was celebrated with solemnity. After exhuming what they claimed was his corpse, they took him by car to Barcelona. A stage had been set up in the center of Plaça Catalunya or the great ceremony was about to begin. Captain General Moscardó headed the numerous cohort of authorities. The coffin, carried with great care by priests to the cathedral, was buried in the chapel of Saint Christ in Lepanto. Dr. Modrego delivered the funeral oration. Carrer del Bisbe then received the name Irurita and then the sculpture sculpted by Vicente Navarro. Despite the fact that the family name was removed in 1982, the monument remained in the niche.

The mystery emerges.

At least six reliable witnesses stated that they had recognized Bishop Irurita when he was leaving the episcopal palace, on January 28, 1939. They questioned him, but he steadfastly avoided the attempt to dialogue.

Suspicions arose and disturbing questions multiplied. Wasn’t the bishop a martyr? Was he ashamed of playing dead? Had he been hidden abroad, where did he die?

And the enigma is imposed.

The conduct of the Vatican, which until 1943 kept the seat of the bishopric vacant, was indicative. Once the process of canonization began in 1959, it was reactivated in 1993 and received the nihil obstat in 2002, but remained in abeyance. Of all that was published, the research of Josep M. Ràfols has still added relevant unknowns to history, which has not even managed to clarify the DNA.

What fits best in this story that would have fascinated Hitchcock is this quote from Churchill: “A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, within an enigma”. The Vatican, without a doubt, has the keys.