Celebration of the Virgin of Guadalupe

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Celebration of the Virgin of Guadalupe

In 1531, on December 9th, an Indian farmer
named Juan Diego was passing by the hill
called Tepeyac outside
of Mexico City on his way to an early
morning Mass when he heard birds singing
overhead, whistles and flutes
and beating wings, and saw a maiden
dressed in the robes of an Aztec princess.
She spoke Nahuatl, the Aztec
language, Juan’s language, and had skin
as brown as cinnamon. She told Juan that
she was Maria, the Mother of
God, and that he should tell the Bishop of
Mexico City to build her a chapel on the
site. The Bishop, of course, was
not impressed by this message and
demanded some proof. The Virgin told
Juan to climb the hill and gather an
armful of roses, Castilian roses, which
should not have been blooming then. But
when Juan opened his cloak to
show the Bishop the miraculous roses, he
was surprised to see the Bishop fall on his
knees. On the cloak was an
image of the virgin as she appeared to him,
surrounded by an oval frame of stars. Of
course, the chapel was built.

Our Lady of Guadalupe is affectionately
known as La Morenita, the little dark one.
The place on which she first
appeared used to be a shrine to the ancient
Aztec Goddess, Tonantzin. According to
Monaghan, Tonantzin was a
mother-goddess honored on the winter
solstice. She was portrayed by a woman
dressed entirely in white and
covered with shells and eagle feathers,
who danced through the crowd, weeping
and singing, until she was
ritually killed.

By Patricia Monagahan, “The Book of
Goddesses and Heroines”

Xoxo Rev. Donna

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