The feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Hispanic Ministry-WEB

This weekend, Hispanic Catholics in the Diocese of Camden, and around the world, are preparing to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, “Patroness of the Americas.”

The origins of the Dec. 12 observance date back to December 1531, when the Virgin Mary appeared to Juan Diego, an elder peasant and farmer, on Mexico’s Tepeyac Hill. Speaking to Diego, Mary tells him to visit his bishop, and request that a temple be built on the site of her appearance, where the faithful can pray to Our Lady and ask for healing amidst sufferings.

After the bishop denies his request, and doubts Mary’s appearance, Diego is tasked by Our Lady to pick flowers from Tepeyac Hill, and bring them to the bishop. Upon opening his tilma, with flowers, in front of the bishop, Diego instead finds an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe painted on his cloak. Today, more than 400 years later, Mexican pilgrims visit the temple to honor their patroness.

As Hispanic parishes in South Jersey remember Our Lady of Guadalupe, with processions, music, and worship, Andres Arango, Bishop’s Delegate for Hispanic Ministry, and Director of Evangelization for the Diocese of Camden, calls the feast a great opportunity for evangelization.

“As many people visit the churches to pray to Our Lady of Guadalupe, they can experience a personal encounter with Jesus, through her intercession,” he said.

For more information on Hispanic parishes in the Diocese of Camden, and the Our Lady of Guadalupe celebrations, visit www.camdendiocese.org/hm.

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