How lucky am I to be in Mexico during celebrations for Virgin of Guadalupe Day? On December 12th, Catholics across the Americas celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe commemorating the day in 1531 when the apparition of the Virgin Mary appeared in Mexico City, in the form of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Since then, she has become an icon not just of religious faith, but of ethnic pride and resistance against oppression.
In Mexico, I’ve seen her her likeness on everything from lampshades to purses to buildings. In Chiapas, she was wearing a Zapatista bandana and, on the ceiling of a small church in La Crucecita, Huatulco, she was represented in the world’s largest mural dedicated to the Virgin of Guadaloupe. You can check out the mural on the website of Mexican artist Jose del Signo or visit it in person (the church is located across from the zocolo).
I’ve even seen her passing by in a solemn procession near our family’s home in Guatemala City, Guatemala.
So, I’m especially happy to be here in Puerto Vallarta, home to the main parish Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the iconic symbol that dominates the city’s skyline during our Lady of Guadalupe Day. There have already been processions, pilgrims, fireworks and of course food. And many, many likenesses of the Virgin on religious objects and souvenirs.
What is most amazing though, is how she draws devotees from all religions, faiths and beliefs… proving that, not only is the Virgin of Guadalupe everywhere — she is for everyone.
If You Go
Official Tourism website: Visit Mexico
Best Viewing Location: A top spot to see the processions is La Casa de los Omelets, located on the second floor on Independencia 225 above Calle Juarez near Our Lady of Guadalupe church. Get there early to score a seat on the balcony.