Most Catholics in North America have heard the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe. She appeared to the now-Saint Juan Diego in December 1531. Over the course of five apparitions, she instructed him to build a church on the spot where she appeared. Since the bishop did not believe Juan Diego’s account of her apparition, he was instructed to bring proof. Not only were Castilian roses blooming at that spot in the middle of December, but when Juan Diego gathered them in his cloak and returned to the bishop, they had imprinted an image of the Blessed Mother on his cloak.
Each year, to celebrate this beautiful feast day, Queen of the Holy Rosary holds a special Mass in the evening and recounts the story of the apparitions. This event is hosted by the Our Lady of Guadalupe Society.
Vicki Reyes, President of the Our Lady of Guadalupe Society, invites all in the community to join us for this celebration on Dec. 12, the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
“We began this celebration at Queen in the 1990s,” Vicki says. “Angelina Perez and her husband, Martin, founded the society and my parents were also founding members. Because of those family ties, I was nominated after my father served as President.”
Over the years, marking this feast has come in many different forms. From offering a bi-lingual Mass to serving the homeless, the Our Lady of Guadalupe Society has ensured we make this feast a priority for the parish community.
This year, Mass will be celebrated at 6 p.m. with a reception following downstairs in the church hall. After Communion, before the final blessing, members of the society will reenact the story of Juan Diego and Our Lady of Guadalupe.
“Each year my father would participate by stepping in as Juan Diego,” Vicki says. “He would walk up to the picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe with a bundled cloak. Then he would open the cloak, revealing the beautiful image of Our Lady on the tilma. Every year I cry, but especially the year after my father passed. It’s so beautiful to witness our small efforts in keeping the story alive.”
Plan to join us on Tuesday, Dec. 12, as we celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Mexican pastries and hot chocolate will be served downstairs following the 6 p.m. Mass. All are invited to join us!
The Our Lady of Guadalupe Society is open to new members joining to help with their efforts in the community. Please contact Vicki Reyes at email@example.com for more information.