Pelagius of Asturias is often paralleled with Gideon and the 300 men as well as Leonidas and the Spartan defense of the Thermopylae Pass. What do these three men have in common?
These heroic leaders defeated their enemies in battle against great odds. As with Gideon, divine intervention played a role in Pelayo’s victory at Cavadonga, and like both Leonidas and Gideon, Pelagius of Asturias had only 300 men.
Introducing Patrick Bowen as Pelagius of Asturias, Michael Bowen as Bishop Oppas, Faustina Bowen as Our Lady of Covadonga, Pelayo is an intriguing introduction to the role Spain played in saving the West from the relentless onslaught of Muslim conquest.
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Pelayo demonstrates that good citizens have a duty to disobey authority when immoral or unfair orders are given. The "revolutionary and rebellious" Bishop Oppas is not concerned for the spiritual good of the early Spanish known as Visigoths but our hero, Pelayo stands up for the people.
God is pleased with Pelayo's bravery and sends the Blessed Mother to deliver a message of victory. Through her intercession, the Visigoths conquer the great Muslim force. Read about how Our Lady has used her power to intercede for mankind throughout all generations.
This part of the story emphasizes the great love of the Mother of God for her children here on earth and the victories she is able to win when complete trust is placed in her. Although conquering the Muslims with so small a force was seemingly impossible, Pelayo and his Visigoth followers had faith in their Mother and fought the impossible battle anyway.
They didn't expect to be saved without putting up a fight either, though. They neither despaired nor committed the great sin of presumption that God would save them without any effort on their part. They were seemingly losing until they engaged in battle. When they did, Mary preformed the impossible and assisted in the victory.
This is much like the battles we face in our world today.
After escaping from the Moors, Pelayo retreats to the Asturias Mountains and waits for the Moors to arrive at the foot of the mountain. The Moors send their representative up the mountain: the revolutionary and rebellious Bishop Oppas.
Bishop Oppas unsuccessfully tries to dissuade Pelayo by pointing out how outnumbered his army is. He returns to the Muslim camp without Pelayo surrendering.
When the first attack is launched, the Spanish Visigoths are driven back to a cave that rests inside one of the mountain crags. There, the Mother of God appears to the army. She presents Pelagius of Asturias with a shield which in gold letters is written the Holy Name of Jesus.
She encourages the small army telling them that the Moors waver and victory will be theirs if they attack swiftly and boldly. The confidant Visigoths fall upon the Moors who flee the field and abandon the campaign. Like Gideon, Pelagius of Asturias defeats the Moors with an army of a mere 300 and the aid of Our Lady of Covadonga, the most holy Mother of God.
Pelayo ruled as King of the Asturias for the remainder of his life. His kingdom was no bigger than a 10 mile radius. But it represented an island of Christianity surrounded by a sea of Mohammedanism.
This event in the summer of 722 A.D. marked the first victory of the Christians over the Moors in Spain. Pelayo’s heroism rippled down the ages making a crescendo when the good Queen Isabella drove the last infidel from Spain during her reign in the fifteenth century, seven hundred years later.
The short script was inspired mainly by James Fitzhenry's book, El Cid, God's Own Champion.
Though this novel mostly focuses on the eventful life of another hero, Rodrigo Diaz, there is a short section dedicated to the battle of Covadonga. This is an inspiring short novel on Spain and her Moorish invaders.
Many more hours were spent researching Warren Carroll's A History of Christendom Volume II: "The Building of Christendom".
Mr. and Mrs. Carroll are indeed recorders of good stories. This generation will never know how indebted we are to theses two historians for all their work in preserving true history.
Coming soon, Pelayo behind the scenes photos and Pelayo Photo Gallery! Keep checking back or subscribe.
One of the objectives of this film is to put serious effort into the battle scenes. Making it was a blast. Order your copy and read all the details of making Pelayo here...
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