Most Mexican Catholics know that December 12th is the day that the Virgen de Guadalupe is celebrated all over where they live. My mom has been attending morning mass (la novena) leading up to today and waking up very early to join the Mariachis and Matachines in the Chicago area to honor la Virgen de Guadalupe.
Locally there were celebrations at several catholic churches. The Laredo Morning Times has beautiful shots in their focus section of the processions at the Guadalupe Church in Laredo. I would give you the link but… you have to be a paying customer, sorry.
This is their write-up which is a very common story:
Tradition says “Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe” miraculously appeared on the cloak of Juan Diego, an indigenous peasant, on Dec. 12, 1531, three days after he had seen a vision of a young woman on the hill of Tepeyac near Mexico City.
Today, the Basilica of Guadalupe, established near Tepeyac, is the most visited Catholic shrine in the world. The image of the Virgen de Guadalupe is the most popular religious and cultural image in Mexico. She is recognized as the “Patroness of the Americas.”
Laredo Catholics, like Catholics around the globe, will celebrate the 479th anniversary of her apparition with special Masses.
Members of Guadalupe Parish in central Laredo have celebrated a novena — nine days of prayer in her honor — leading to a special Mass that will be celebrated early today.
The Mass will include matachines, or religious dancers, and songs that include the traditional “Mañanitas,” or happy birthday.
The official page in Mexico has a more details story and even internet mass from the Basilica de Santa Maria de Guadalupe.
Pero… I am not a Matachin, a Knight or even a Guadalupana. I just like the traditions of my parents and obviously of the downtown community as can be seen in the pictures of the procession as it ended at St. Peter’s Church on Matamoros Street; or should I say started? The Silver Rose banner was up and is part of run that takes place in North America. Was today the day it crossed? Anyway, if it was, the tradition is for the rose to cross from Mexico into the United States and up into Canada. Check out more details online. If today wasn’t the day that the Silver Rose crossed into Laredo, well, it is the appropriate celebration day for it to be recognized since the Silver Rose Run is symbolic of the Virgen de Guadalupe‘s miracle of roses.