Sunday, December 12, 2010

Celebrating Our Lady of Guadalupe

Today, Sunday, December 12,  there is a special feast day celebrating Our Lady of Guadalupe.

If you are not familiar with this image and the story surrounding its origin, I encourage you to read here, where it explains how the Mother of God first appeared to a poor farmer named Juan Diego on December 9, 1531 in Mexico. ( If you click on the links above, they will take you to a summary for younger children.  I am sharing this link to share with my own children, but it also does a nice job of summarizing Juan Diego's life changing experience in a simple and short way.) 

The image above was what appeared on Juan Diego's tilma when the bouquet of roses cascaded down from Juan Diego's cloak as he was showing others who were skeptical about his story.

Last year our family went to Mass to celebrate this feast day at a church named "Our Lady of Guadalupe".
The altar was filled with hundreds and hundreds of roses and was so beautiful.  When our Blessed Mother appeared to Juan Diego at the hill of Tepeyac, there was a field of roses where roses did not bloom before or during the season of winter when roses do not bloom naturally.  Hence, when people celebrate this feast day, many decorate their homes and churches with roses.

After Mass last year we ate at a Mexican restaurant and we went last night to a Mexican restaurant with 6 adults and 13 children!  (3 families total).  I brought a candle with the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe on it and burned it during our dinner to help celebrate such a special outing with family and friends.

We enjoy reading The Lady of Guadalupe by Tomie de Paola each year because Juan Diego's story about how he was blessed by Mary's presence is too miraculous not to share with my children.  When I read this book, I am always so impressed by the great faith and persistence Juan Diego had even when others doubted his story and experience. 

We also watch the CCC video, Juan Diego-Our Lady of Guadalupe, sometime between St. Juan Diego's feast on December 9 and Our Lady of Guadalupe's feast day on December 12.  Would you like a chance to win this DVD?  If so,  Lacy at Catholic Icing is hosting a giveaway for one reader to win this DVD.  You can go to her post HERE for more details and to enter!

The image from Juan Diego's tilma is on display in Mexico and has not deteriorated since the 1500s when the image first appeared.  There are many other miraculous facts about this image that my dad shared with me through an email attachment, but I am unable to link up the attachment on this post.  But, if you are interested in receiving the email attachment please Contact Me and I will be more than happy to send you the information.
You can also read "Our Lady of Guadalupe ‘completely beyond' scientific explanation, says researcher", which is an article that explains how researchers to this day say "there is no scientific explanation for the 478 years of high quality-preservation of the Tilma or for the miracles that have occurred to ensure its preservation. "

I give Joy to the World when I share how God works in mysterious ways! 


Great post. Voted for you:) I am learning a lot about your faith and had a very interesting discussion with my husband about ours and how it is different. I love learning new things and enjoy learning about your faith:)

Mom2Seven said...

Fantastic post! Thank you again for forwarding that information to me! Happy Gaudete Sunday as well as the special feast of Our Lady! +JMJ+

Hi Anna-Marie,
I'm glad you are finding my posts interesting and hopefully insightful :) Thanks always for your support and encouragement !

Hi Annita!
I'm glad you enjoyed the email. My children loved reading the email about the miraculous tilma after I read de Paola's book to them! Happy Gaudete Sunday to you! This morning at Mass, we had a visiting priest say the Mass who has been blind since age 6 due to a brain tumor he had. He is 1 of 11 children in a single parent home with his father raising them. It was just amazing and inspirational to hear him speak and offer Mass without sight. My children were amazed how he recited the Eucharistic prayers from a book with no words. (we sat on the front row and could see his prayer book that he was reading with braille. Awesome!) He is giving 3 talks this week in the evening. I just don't know if I'll be able to attend any, unfortunately :(

Tiffany said...

Wow, your parish altar is amazing with all the roses! Neat to see what other parishes do to celebrate. We love those same resources you so beautifully shared. Thank you and Ave Maria!

Hi Tiffany!
The decorated altar was not my parish, but a church about an hour away from my home that we visited called "Our Lady of Guadalupe" so they always have a big celebration for this feast day and since it was on Saturday last year we traveled there to go to the Vigil Mass. It was so beautiful! Thanks for your visit and comment and aren't there just so many lovely Catholic resources for kids? I wish I had all these fun resources to watch/read when I was growing up, but I am enjoying them now with my own children and learning along with them! :)

JoAnna said...

Hey, I recognize that church. It's mine! :-) Long time no see, Tracy. Come visit us again! I need to update the site, but our website for anyone interested is
We are the only Our Lady of Guadalupe parish in the Raleigh Diocese. There is one other in western NC at the mountains.

JoAnna in Benson

Hi JoAnna!
What a great surprise to "see" you in blog world! How did you find this blog post of mine? Thank you for your parishes website and I miss your beautiful church and wonderful priest!
I hope you are having a blessed Advent!
God bless you!

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