The Roots (continued)
Bishop Arias as a child
Mataluenga: Bishop Arias' place of birth
Some 20 miles west of Leon there is a small country village called Mataluenga on the right bank of the Luna River in the fertile valley of Orbigo. The people of this area make their living from agriculture and cattle raising; the main harvest is hops, used to give aroma and flavor to the beer. Mataluenga was the home of Atanasio and Magdalena Arias. There, on July 22, 1929, David was born, as well as his other six brothers and sisters; two of them, José Antonio and Consuelo, also entered the Order of Augustinian Recollects.
Arias Coat of Arms
Heraldic science tells us that the Arias ancestors came from Galicia and Asturias, and later spread through Leon, Castile and other parts of the world. Its coat of arms contains a tower, an eagle and the cross of Calatrava. The tower stands for security, greatness and the power that is used to defend friends and resist enemies. The eagle is the symbol of magnanimity and looks from on high to discharge its responsibilities. The cross expresses the Christian identity of the knights who fought against the Moslems to defend the city of Calatrava.
Bishop Arias' Family
Town of Villaviciosa where the family lives now
David spent his first 12 years in Mataluenga and attended elementary school there. His family now lives in Madrid and other towns near Mataluenga, like Rioseco de Tapia, San Román de los Caballeros, Llamas de la Ribera and Villaviciosa de la Ribera, the place where Bishop Arias now spends his summer vacation. Villaviciosa, at the confluence of the Luna and Omaña rivers, is the head of that fertile riviera irrigated by Orbigo River. One can find there meadows with poplars, fields of corn and hops plantations. Though the weather is cold in the winter, the temperature is quite pleasant in the summer.
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