The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Today we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  In 1531, while Mexico was overwhelmed by the worship of false gods the Blessed Mother appearanced to a young man, Juan Diego, on a hill in what is now known as Mexico City.  She asked that a church be built on the site of her appearance.  Juan Diego brought Our Lady’s request to the local bishop who initially denied the request and asked for a sign.  Our Lady sent her messenger to gather roses for the Bishop, a difficult task to complete in mid-December.  Juan Diego appeared before the Bishop, with his tilma, a poor quality cloth made from cactus, cradling the beautiful roses.  Beneath the roses, Our Lady left, miraculously, a beautiful image of herself. The tilma, scientifically speaking, should have deteriorated in twenty years, but still to this day, nearly 500 years later, shows no sign of decay and defies all scientific explanations as to its origin.  Shortly following the Blessed Mother’s appearance to Juan Diego, over 9 million people were converted to Christianity.  Our Lady of Guadalupe is Patroness of the Americas and Patroness of the Unborn.

The image as it appears on the tilma worn by Juan Diego

Our family has a tradition of celebrating this feast day together in a simple, yet fun way.  Many crafts and coloring pages of Our Lady of Guadalupe are available online and we usually take advantage of our extra (messy) craft supplies (GLITTER) to decorate Our Lady.  We always celebrate with a festive Mexican meal, usually enchiladas, and this year since we’ll gather with friends to also celebrate our eldest daughter receiving her First Reconciliation, we’ll let the kids whack around a pinata and enjoy the goodies stuffed inside.  We enjoy several very well-written children’s books retelling this popular story.  We always end our celebration asking for the prayers of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Our Lady of Gudalupe, who blessed Mexico and all the Americas by your appearance to Juan Diego, intercede for the holy Church, protect the pope, and help everyone who invokes you in their necessities.

O mystical rose, hear our prayers and our petitions, especially for the particular one we are praying for at this moment (mention your request).

Since you are the ever Virgin Mary and the Mother of the true God, obtain for us from your most holy Son the grace of keeping our faith, sweet hope in the midst of the bitterness of life, burning charity, and the precious gift of final perseverance.

Amen

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