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Celebrating Guadalupe

The Santuario de Guadalupe in Santa Fe.

Today is the Catholic feast day for Our Lady of Guadalupe. Throughout the world celebrations venerating Guadalupe are taking place. Considered the Madonna of the Americas, and the patron saint of Mexico, Guadalupe has a special place in Santa Fe. The sanctuary to Our Lady of Guadalupe is the oldest continuous standing sanctuary to Guadalupe in the United States. Built in 1777, the church is located on Guadalupe street in the Railyard district of Santa Fe.

Juan Diego & Guadalupe

The Santuario de Guadalupe honors the Mexican Mary of Guadalupe. The legend surrounding the Guadalupe of the Americas says that she appeared four times to Juan Diego. The Christianized Aztec Indian first saw the apparition of the Madonna on December of 1531. According to documents, Diego’s age at the time of the Virgin’s manifestations is still uncertain. However, many scholars claim he was in his late 50s, and was not the young boy depicted in most of the artwork surrounding the legend. The Catholic feast day for Juan Diego took place on December 9th.

Documenting Guadalupe

 The story unfolds through four different events that took place on Tepeyac Hill at the northeast rim of present-day Mexico City. One account of the 1531 apparitions records that the Virgin Mary of Guadalupe called herself the “Ever Virgin.” Miguel Sánchez published the first Spanish-language imprint of the story in 1648. In 1649 a Nahautal version of the narrative by Lazo de la Vega became widely available. The Virgin rapidly became the most popular Madonna of the masses, the one to whom they turned in time of need.

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