Monday, December 12, 2011

12 Days of Mary: Day 12

"it's not about religion, it is about sharing" (Rebecca Brooks) 

(photo taken at the Nativity Blessed Virgin Mary church on Alameda St., NM)

O Holy Mother of God, despise not our petitions, 

but in your mercy hear and answer us.

Obtain for us from your most holy Son 

the grace of keeping our faith, 

of sweet hope in the midst of the bitterness of life, 

of burning charity, and the precious gift 

of final perseverance. 



today marks the twelveth day of december; 
the feast day of our lady of guadalupe.
we have come to the conclusion of this glorious 
meme for 2011 of the 12 days of mary.
while this is not about religion, it is about sharing,
about opening hearts, rejoicing in ultimate mother love.
it is about  light, beauty, inspiration, thoughtful regard.
a welcome chance to begin each new day together
in beauty and peace.

Come see what others have shared over at Rebecca's page. Feel free to join in with us.

You might be curious as to the details of the visual symbols you see in the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. I came across a wonderful article written by Rod and Caroline Lorenz which explains the meaning behind the black crescent moon, the color of her robe and the stars, the reason for the flowers on her garment, the black waist band, the angel: " The sacred image of Our Lady of Guadalupe is rich in meaning. It expresses, in a way that words cannot, the tender love and goodness of God. It is a gift from heaven especially to the First Nations, and to all those who live united in this land, and to all of mankind."

St. Francis Xavier Church, Albuquerque

I'm told that for the past 90 years, the neighborhood where this church (St. Francis Xavier) resides has been doing a procession of Our Lady of Guadalupe on the weekend closest to her feast day. I went last night to their mass. Many of the homes in this area have an OLG shrine in their yard for this occasion-with Christmas lights and Juan Diego. After mass, the parish goes down the street with the altar that contains OLG and visit another large altar in the South Broadway Cultural Center's Community Art Gallery. After the procession is over, the priest (or in last night's case, may have been a monk) goes from home to home blessing each family shrine (in the freezing cold evening). It is quite festive.

Here's an image of the huge shrine that is inside the chruch:

Very impressive and my heart is moved to witness this unwavering faith.

(one of the many shrines in the south valley neighborhood)

Eternal gratitude to Rebecca for hosting this meme once again-uniting us all with the sharing of our stories, prayers and images. To think that an event like this is not life changing would be a disconnect from it all. This powerful bond and connection that the participants (and readers) experience will continue to have positive ripple effects as we go on with our lives. Thank you Rebecca, my most humble thank you. You. Are. Amazing.


rebecca said...

dear paula,
thank you for taking each of us with you on this glorious posada!
the shrine in honor of our lupita is truly inspiring, as is your devotion and love for mary.
thank you, i always love walking beside you!

The Woodwife said...

Another beautiful post!!

priti.lisa said...

You have said it all,
simply and eloquently.
Thank you for sharing these pictures...that outside shrine is magical. ♥♥♥

ArtMuseDog and Carol said...

Wonderful photos ~ awesome words ~ Wow ~ Lovely celebration they had ~ What a journey we have had ~~ thanks, namaste, Carol (A Creative Harbor)

peggy gatto said...

What beauties you gave us!
Thank you!!

Dawn Elliott said...

I love your story and images of the Albuquerque church and its annual processions...they are what really stir my soul! It has been so delighted to share in this journey with you and the other participants. Thank you for your offersings!

Spadoman said...

Thank you for the insight that was in that article. Also for the photos you posted today and for the past 12 days. I love the altar in the church and I would just love the idea of seeing the procession. It would remind me so much of the procession of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel at my boyhood home parish on her Feast day.
All in all, a great experience. Ir will be hard to top it.


Lenora said...

Love the tradition of Posada! Thank you for sharing your neighbourhood of shrines! I have so enjoyed it!

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

The shrine in St. Francis Xavier Church looks so much like the interiors of churches I have visited in Mexico. (Well, why shouldn't it? Albuquerque used to be part of Mexico!) Thanks for posting this photo.

Noelle Renee said...

Thank you for this last and most beautiful walk with Mary. These shrines are so moving. Your description of unwavering faith is very apt. Thank you for sharing this wonderful journey together and being and inspiration and an encouragement.
Blessings and Peace,

Hettienne said...

What a blessing and a privilege to participate in this feast and thank you for giving us a glimpse of it! it has been such a blessing and grace to visit your blog and to participate in this honouring of Mary.

Miss Robyn said...

look at that magnificent shrine in your neighbourhood! And my heart missed a beat as I looked upon the shrine inside the church. I think I would have been rooted to the spot if I had been there.

thankyou for journeying along with me and my offerings. bless.


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