El Héroe del 12 diciembre

Nuestra madre, la madre de Jesús–¿cómo se llama? Sí. Ella puso su imagen en una “tilma.” ¿A quien perteneció esta tilma?

GuadelupeSí. A San Juan Diego. Cuauhtlatoatzin,—“águila que habla.”

Pues, ¿fue ver a la Virgencita el evento más importante en la vida de San Juan Diego?

Aparentemente no. Escuchamos al papa, San Juan Pablo II, hablando de Juan Diego, en la misa de su canonización:

Siendo ya adulto y casado, Juan abrazó el Evangelio, y, juntamente con su esposa, fue purificado con el agua bautismal.

Ahora—¿fue eso antes o después de cuando San Juanito vio la Virgen? Fue antes. La Santísima Virgen se apareció a un indio cristiano, un fiel de la gente indígena de México.

El papa continuo:

San Juan Diego, después de su bautismo, vivió como cristiano, bajo la luz de la fe, y de acuerdo a las obligaciones asumidas ante Dios y la Iglesia.

Podemos decir que el país de México no tiene un  héroe más grande que El Águila que Habla. Él representa todo lo que es rico y puro en el corazón del país. Fue místico de la belleza de la tierra que Dios ha dado a la gente.

Y él vio a la Virgen Madre de Dios, y recibió la imagen que distingue la gente. De veras, esta imagen distingue toda la gente de América—del norte al sur. San Juan Diego no es solamente héroe de México, sino héroe del continente entero.

Pero él vio, y recibió la imagen, porque fue bautizado. Porque fue cristiano fiel, cumpliendo diligentemente sus promesas bautismales.

Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe no quiere gloria para sí misma. Ella no quiere ser puro signo de nacionalismo u orgullo racial. No. Ella quiere gloria solo por su Hijo. Ella quiere ser imagen de la gente de América solo para unirnos en la Iglesia santa y católica, la Iglesia de su Hijo.

Si la amamos a la Virgen de Guadalupe, no pensamos tanto en el milagro de la tilma—aunque es milagro maravilloso—sino pensamos más en el milagro de la fe cristiana. San Juan Diego merece nuestra admiración, no tanto por recibir la imagen, como en vivir fielmente como hijo de Dios, bautizado en Cristo. En vivir lleno de amor por los misterios de la fe cristiana, especialmente los sacramentos—la santa Misa, confesión, etc.

Que vivamos en esta manera, como San Juan Diego, acercándonos a Dios por los sacramentos. Y Dios sabe que tipo de milagros podamos ver.

Dying First for His Mother

El Greco celebrated Immaculate Conception on Dec 9, the day Our Lady first appeared in Guadalupe
El Greco celebrated Immaculate Conception on Dec 9, the day Our Lady first appeared in Guadalupe

Our Lady first appeared to Talking Eagle, aka St. Juan Diego, on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. In the Spanish Empire of the 16th century, Our Lady’s conception was celebrated on December 9.

Now, she could hardly have chosen that particular day by accident, to greet the people of this continent. What exactly did she mean by it?

Only she has the answer. But if I might propose a theory…

To have been conceived without sin in her mother’s womb: that sets Our Lady apart, to be sure. But how exactly? The Virgin’s radiant sinlessness arose from the same sole source that wipes away our sins, namely the crucifixion of her Son. Mary received an unstained human nature because the Almighty and All-Just Father foresaw the sacrifice Christ would make to win her the right to have it.

Now, it pertains to our holy faith to believe and to meditate on this: Jesus, during His bitter Passion, thought of each of us individually. He thought of every human being who ever had lived or would live. He thought of you and me in particular, and He offered Himself for the purpose of wiping away your sins and mine in particular.

We need not scruple as to how Christ could have had the time or the mental capacity to think of billions of individual human beings, not to mention each of our sins, even the most hidden ones. The perfect union of His human mind with the infinite divine Mind made such an undertaking on His part perfectly possible.

No, the real question is: Of whom did Jesus think first, when He thought of us all, and dedicated His Passion and death to our personal salvation? He loves us all, of course. He would have died if either you or I were the only sinner ever.

But: He had a favorite. He loved one particular person more than anyone else.

When the Son said to the heavenly Father, “Let this chalice pass from me—but not my will, but yours be done”—when He submitted Himself to the thunderous avalanche of suffering that would liberate the world from the punishment we deserve–the son thought first of his mother.

“I do not want to die. But for her, I will.”

Talking Eagle’s Cloak

The image our Lady left on St. Juan Diego's cloak

Cuauhtlatoatzin. Chichimeca for “talking eagle.” Talking Eagle became Juan Diego, or John James, when he was baptized.

480 years ago today, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to him and told him to ask the Bishop of Mexico to build a shrine for her on Tepeyac hill.

The bishop asked for proof, so three days later, the Virgin appeared to Juan Diego again and told him to pick the mid-winter roses on the hill and wrap them in his cloak.

When he opened the tilma to show the miraculous roses to the bishop, they found the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe on the inside of the cloak.

…When John Paul II visited Mexico to declare Juan Diego a saint, the Pope considered the question, What was Juan Diego like?

Humble, tender, true, and faithful. He accepted the Christian message without foregoing his identify as a member of the ancient people of the Anahuac Valley in central Mexico.

Talking Eagle spent the rest of his life caring for the Guadalupe shrine. He lived as a hermit. Everyone knew he was a saint.

The Virgin on our Side

Four hundred seventy-seven years ago today, Our Lady came to our side of the world to let us know that she loves us just as much as she loves people in the eastern hemisphere.

Here is part of the account of what happened:

The image our Lady left on St. Juan Diego's cloak
The image our Lady left on St. Juan Diego's cloak

Juan Diego set out on his way, now content and sure of succeeding. [The Virgin had asked him to go to the Bishop and tell him that she wanted a church built in Tepeyac.] On arriving in the Bishop’s presence, he told him: “My lord, I did what you asked. The Heavenly Lady complied with your request and fulfilled it. [The Bishop had asked for a sign to prove the truth of Juan Diego’s message.] She sent me to the hilltop to cut some Castilian roses and told me to bring them to you in person. And this I am doing, so that you can see in them the sign you seek.”

He immediately opened up his white mantle, and as all the roses scattered to the ground, there was drawn on the cloak and suddenly appeared the precious image of the ever virgin Mary, Mother of God, in the same manner as it is today and is kept in her shrine of Tepeyac.

Also: Are you thinking about seeing a doctor who deals with fertility, conceptions, difficult pregnancies, etc.? Make sure to bring a copy of this Vatican summary with you. (Click on the line with “inglese” to get the English summary.)