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The patron saint of Mexico and Latin America

Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Virgen de Guadalupe or Virgin of Guadalupe is the patron saint of Mexico and since 1945 of whole Latin America. The commemoration takes place every 12th of December.

Over the centuries Guadalupe has become a national symbol for the people, freedom fighters and social parties. Including Juan Diego, a famous Indian, Miguel Hidalgo, a famous independence fighter and the current Zapatistas, a well-known socialist movement, who are all honoring the patron saint of Mexico.


The story

The saint Juan Diego, a converted Aztec, witnessed the first appearance of Guadalupe, Mary the mother of Jesus, on Saturday December 9th in 1531.
On his way to the church of Santiago in the village Tlatilolco, now Mexico City, he heard a voice calling his name on the Tepeyac hill. He climbed up and saw a young woman around fourteen years old and dressed like an Indian princess. She asked him "because of God's will" to build a temple at this place.
Juan Diego started the adventure to make this happen. Haunted by ministers and with an uncle in sick-bed he continued his journey to the bishop. Nobody believed his story, untill miracles took place. Castillian roses in a tilma and a cactus cloak convinced the bishop. It was the mantle of roses where the bishop had been praying for: a sign of a fruitful mission. The appearance of Mary and this mantle lowered the bishop on his knees and he asked for forgiveness for his previous unbelief. On top of this all, when Juan Diego came home his uncle cured completely.
These miracles made a huge impression on the population. In the years up to 1539 eight million of Indians let themselves be baptized. The mantle is kept present in the Basilica of Guadalupe in Mexico City.

La Basilica de Guadalupe in Mexico City is up until now the most visited place of pilgrimage in the world.​




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