Our Lady of Guadalupe: Dec. 12 Celebration in Prince George’s County

December 11, 2008

One of the most important dates on the calendar for Mexican Catholics is December 12, the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Locally, the Mexican immigrant community will gather in the heart of the Riverdale Park community for a day of festive events, starting with a midnight procession and ending with evening Mass and traditional Mexican food:

Friday, December 12, 2008
St. Bernard of Clairvaux
5700 St. Bernard’s Drive (near Kenilworth Avenue and Riverdale Road)
Riverdale Park, MD 20737

Events are in Spanish.

6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m.: Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl will celebrate Mass for approximately 2,000 people, followed by a reenactment of the Miracle of the Roses associated with Our Lady of Guadalupe.

7:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m.: Stalls outside the church will sell traditional Mexican food, religious candles and other wares.

8:00 p.m.: Fireworks display.

Our Lady of Guadalupe is a much beloved image of Mary, Mother of God. In 1531, Mary appeared to a poor Indian named Juan Diego in an area outside Mexico City. Roses miraculously appeared despite the harsh winter. Juan Diego carried these to the local bishop. When he dropped them, an image of Our Lady appeared on his cloak where he had held them. That image is still visible on the cloak, which is in a cathedral built on the site of the apparition of Our Lady. Our Lady of Guadalupe is credited with converting the nation of Mexico from paganism to Catholicism. Pope John Paul II declared Juan Diego a saint in 2002.

Susan Gibbs
Director of Communications
[email protected]