Rev. Anthony Giamello Pastor, St. John the Apostle/St. Bernadette
Most of us know the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On December 9, 1531, an elderly Indian man named Juan Diego had a vision of Mary, the mother of Jesus, at Tepeyac, a poor Mexican-Indian village outside Mexico City. Mary directed Juan Diego to tell his Bishop to build a Church in Tepeyac. The Spanish Bishop; however, dismissed the Indian’s tale as mere superstition. But to humor Juan Diego, the Bishop demanded that the visionary bring some sort of proof. Three days later, the Virgin Mary appeared again and told Juan Diego to pick the exquisitely beautiful roses that had miraculously bloomed amidst December snows, and take them as a sign to the Bishop. When Juan Diego opened his poncho to present the roses to the Bishop, the flowers poured out from his poncho to reveal an image of the Virgin Mary painted on the inside of the poncho. That image hangs today in the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City and is venerated by thousands of pilgrims from all over the world. This apparition occasioned the conversion of nine million Indians to Catholicism in twenty years. It is estimated that ten million pilgrims visit the Basilica every year. The original Church was built in 1533, the second in 1556 and the third in 1709. The Virgin of Guadalupe was declared the Patroness of Latin America by Pope St. Pius X (1907), Queen of Mexico and Empress of America by Pope Pius XII (1945), Mother of America by Pope St. John XXXIII (1961) and Star of Evangelization by Pope St. John Paul II (1979). Our Lady of Guadalupe – pray for us!
If you would like to add to it at the bottom, the Our Lady of Guadalupe Celebration will be Weds, December 12th beginning at 5:30pm with the Rosary, followed by 6:00pm Mass. All festivities will be in Spanish.
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