Every year, on December 12, Saint Francis Xavier Church celebrates Our Lady of Guadalupe (Spanish: Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe), also known as the Virgin of Guadalupe (Spanish: Virgen de Guadalupe). The entertaining story is associated with a celebrated pictorial image housed in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in México City. Official Catholic accounts state that on the morning of December 9, 1531, Juan Diego saw an apparition of a young girl at the Hill of Tepeyac, near Mexico City. Speaking to him in Nahuatl, a language of the Uto-Aztecan language family, the girl asked that a church be built at that site in her honor (she told him she was the perfect and eternal Virgin Mary, Mother of the true God).
Diego told his story to the Spanish Archbishop of Mexico City, Fray Juan de Zumárraga, who instructed him to return to Tepeyac Hill, and ask the “lady” for a miraculous sign to prove her identity. The first sign was the Virgin healing Juan’s uncle (Juan Bernardino); Diego was on his way to the Church at Tlatelolco in order to bring a priest to his dying uncle. Juan Diego was stopped by the Lady, who had come down from Tepeyac Hill to meet him in the road. Diego was purposely trying to avoid her after not keeping his appointment with her the previous day.
Knowing that his uncle would be okay, Diego asked for a sign to take to the Archbishop. The Virgin told Juan Diego to gather flowers from the top of Tepeyac Hill. Although December was very late in the growing season for flowers to bloom, Juan Diego found Castilian roses, not native to Mexico, on the normally barren hilltop. The Virgin arranged these in his peasant cloak or tilma.
When Juan Diego opened his cloak before Bishop Zumárraga on December 12, the flowers fell to the floor, and on the fabric was the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe.
Juan Diego was officially declared a Saint in 2002, and his tilma is displayed in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the most visited Marian shrine in the world. The representation of the Virgin on the tilma is Mexico’s most popular religious and cultural image, and under this title the Virgin has been acclaimed as “Queen of Mexico.”
There are 34 pictures from this event on our Google+ Page at: http://gplus.to/manosunidas. Be sure to follow (Manos Unidas) on G+ and Twitter @manosunidas1732 and subscribe to our YouTube Channel to keep up with our services in Adams County. Lastly, please leave a comment below and/or share this post.