Friday, December 12, 2008
Our Lady of Guadalupe-Patroness of the Americas
According to traditional Catholic accounts of the Guadalupan apparitions, during a walk from his village to the city on the early morning of December 9, 1531, Juan Diego saw a vision of the Virgin - a young girl of fifteen to sixteen, surrounded by light- at the Hill of Tepeyac. Speaking in Nahuatl, the Lady asked for a church to be built at that site in her honor. When Juan Diego spoke to the Spanish bishop, Fray Juan de Zumárraga, the bishop asked him for a miraculous sign to prove his claim. The Virgin asked Juan Diego to gather some flowers at the top of Tepeyac Hill, even though it was winter when no flowers bloomed. He found there Castilian roses (which were of the Bishop's native home, but not indigenous of Tepeyac), gathered them, and the Virgin herself re-arranged them in his tilma. When Juan Diego presented the roses to Zumárraga, the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe miraculously appeared imprinted on the cloth of Diego's tilma.