Our Lady of Guadalupe

Greetings everyone! Happy new year! Today I want to talk about La Rosa de Guadalupe, or Our Lady in English. As a Mexican-American, I’ve seen her many times. She’s very important to Hispanics, Mexicans especially. She’s everywhere, and I’m proud to say in the march last year (2023) I carried the Bolivia flag. (We have a march around the church with mariachi, dancers, people holding the statue, and kids holding several flags)

Seeing her has deepened my faith now by a large amount. (I’ve been struggling with religious intrusive thoughts) Why? The tilma on which she appeared has many miraculous things on it. If anyone’s interested, I recommend the YT video, “Our Lady of Guadalupe” By GabiAfterHours. Incredibly insightful, and almost bought me to tears. How someone remains an atheist despite knowing this I do not know. Even my older brother (Despite being a believer, but barely does anything for it) was skeptical of it, and quite rude while I was watching it in the car. I’ll pray for him.

What are your thoughts on her?

Our Parish does this as well. We have a nice Hispanic community at our Church. To raise money for their group, they sell breakfast burritos that are excellent! These funds allow them to bring in speakers and do all kinds of things that are enriching to their faith.

As far as Our Lady of Guadalupe goes, I tend to be a skeptical person myself when it comes to apparitions. I think the image of La Rosa de Guadalupe is very beautiful. I do believe in private revelation. It is public revelation that I have a tough time believing. When there are predictions or prophecies attached to these appearances, I tend to question. Mormons believe Joseph Smith was a prophet and all the things “Jesus” told him. This is where some of these things can lead the faithful astray.

I love Mary and I do believe she appears to some individuals in private. We had a little girl at our sister Church, who was dying of a terminal disease. Her family was not Catholic, but she would describe a women by her bedside. One day her parents were flipping through channels and as they passed by EWTN, the little girl caught a glimpse of an image of Mary. “That is the lady who has been visiting me,” the girl uttered. Her parents stopped and said, “This is the women you have been seeing?” The little girl shook her head yes.

Eventually their precious daughter Kyra lost her battle, but God blessed their family with more time with her than doctors had anticipated. But, the thought of their daughter being comforted by our Bless Mother, stuck with them. The girl’s father, a science teacher at the local high school was naturally skeptical, but something kept tugging on his heart. So they went and talked to the Catholic Priest in town. Their entire family became Catholic and shared their conversion story with us at one of our Ignite events.

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My youngest daughter’s Godmother was raised in the Middle East in a Muslim home. She would witness here mother getting beaten by her father with the birth of each of her Sisters. He wanted a boy and blamed her mother for not giving him one. Eventually her brother was born.

One time she herself was struck by her father for questioning the Quran. She was a teenager at this time.

She was eventually arranged to a Muslim man who was also abusive! If she put too much salt on his food, she would be beaten. If she put too little salt on his food, she would be beaten. One day she fought back, which resulted in him beating her worse. Losing the will to live, she eventually tried to take her own life (which makes me really sad, because if you knew her now, she is so full of life, love & joy).

While in the hospital after downing a bottle of pills, she had a vision of a man with a beard and blue eyes (she associated blue eyes with compassion, because her mother had blue eyes, which is more rare in her Country). This man was reaching out to her to pull her from flames, which she described as very painful. The man in this vision told her that she would be free.

After being released from the hospital, a friend of hers helped her go to the Immigration Center. The line was hours long. By the time she got close to the window, everyone left was instructed to come back tomorrow, because they were closed for the day.

Going back to her husband was not an option and going home to her father (who was very upset with her for bringing shame upon the family) was also not an option. She ended up sleeping on a bench. The next day she got in line and the women at the window recognized her from the previous day and smiled, “You’re going to America!” She was so happy, but could tell no one. Her father would be furious! She did go home to her family to see them one last time. That night she hugged her brother and just sobbed, one, because she might not see him again and, two, because, she thought about how he will probably grow up to be like most of the other men in her culture.

She ended up stealing her husband’s dowry and got on a plane to Russia, from Russia to New York, and from New York to a small vacation town in the United States, where she would work, knowing only two words in English, “Yes sir” and “no sir.”

The owners of the hotel took her in as their own. he refers to them as her “mother” and “father” now. While cleaning her “Grandmother’s” room she noticed the elderly woman praying her Rosary. They would talk a lot and one day Dilia asked “Grandma” where they go on Sundays. She said that they go to Church and asked if she would like to go. She did indeed! Before she met “Grandma,” no one had told her about Jesus.

When they entered the Church, she noticed the man on the Cross. She turned to “Grandma” and said, that’s the man from my vision! Grandma just smiled, because she knew that is who had rescued Dilia.

Dilia has been paying back the dowry she took (I don’t know that I would have). She was recently engaged and Married a guy that she met while in College, which she recently graduated. A local businessman from our Church offered to pay for much of her schooling, which she is beyond grateful and gives glory to God.

Dilia does miss her Mother and her siblings. When she first landed in Russia or New York, she did call her Mom to let her know that she is in a safe place and not to worry, but she could not tell her where she was going, out of fear that her Mother would be beaten.

When she was in college she had a woke teacher who kept talking about a “war on women” in the United States. Dilia was like, Let me tell you my story about being a woman in the culture that I grew up in : )

Dilia is one of the most joy-filled people I’ve ever met. Her English has gotten really good. She is now a great elementary school teacher, wife, and mother to a beautiful baby girl. She loves Jesus and is thankful to Him for making her truly free. She once went sky-diving and on the palm of her hand she had written, “I :heart: Jesus!” This is the kind of free-spirit that she has become, trusting in Him.

I just visited with her this past weekend to celebrate Christmas and she told me that she got to speak with her Mom and Sisters recently on the phone and this made her so happy. Keep her in your Prayers. I believe she is still seeking asylum. I wrote a letter to the immigration judge about a year ago, sharing with him what an amazing person she is and how any community would benefit to have her as their teacher, neighbor, and friend. Her trial was postponed for a second time, giving her an extension on her visa. If a new trial has not already taken place, I Pray that God will do whatever He knows is best for Dilia and her Family.

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I apologize in advance. I find it very difficult to believe in Marian apparitions.

I’m somewhat skeptical about Marian apparitions, but the Church has said that some are worthy of belief. But if they are real, they are still private revelations, not dogma; nevertheless they have been added to the Church calendar of feasts. I used to believe completely in all the officially endorsed apparitions, but now I have some doubts. What I would love to read is something giving reasons for and against believing. I think that such arguments must have been aired before any apparition was determined worthy of belief, but the reasons against believing seem to be scarcely mentioned anymore for most of them. The stories of the approved apparitions are typically stated as fact.

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