Skip to comments.Our Lady of Guadalupe called 'Mother Without Borders' in Los Angeles (Catholic Caucus)
Posted on 12/07/2007 1:39:18 PM PST by Coleus
Thousands of Catholics from throughout the greater Los Angeles area gathered in East Los Angeles Dec. 2 to honor Our Lady of Guadalupe as the mother of all peoples -- from every language, race and culture. A mile-long procession, the oldest religious procession in the city honoring Mary, led participants to East Los Angeles College Stadium, where Cardinal Roger M. Mahony and the auxiliary bishops of Los Angeles, numerous priests and more than 15,000 of the faithful gathered for Mass.
The theme this year was "Mother Without Borders: Bringing Down the Walls of Injustice." The event was part of a statewide call to action for comprehensive immigration reform by the California Catholic Conference of Bishops. "The Virgin of Guadalupe is a symbol of hope and compassion for all who are marginalized," said the cardinal. "Today she continues to unite us as a humble people of God in search for understanding, compassion, peace and human dignity for all -- especially for our immigrant brothers and sisters who are being kept in the margins of society by a broken immigration system."
For the procession, which began near La Soledad Church on Cesar Chavez Avenue, scores of churches decorated banners and colorful floats. Aztec dancers and parishioners wore indigenous and multiethnic dress, many bearing images of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patroness of the Americas. The annual celebration recalls the miraculous apparitions of the brown-skinned Virgin Mary to St. Juan Diego at Tepeyac, Mexico, in December 1531. She left her image on his "tilma" or cloak.
For 476 years her image has been a symbol of unity, peace, compassion and hope for people around the world. This year's "Mother Without Borders" theme resonated with immigrant communities living in fear of workplace raids, deportations and family separation. In his homily, Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala, speaking in English and Spanish, called on all Californians to work toward immigration reform.
"I want to welcome in a special way those of you who are English-speaking, because you understand that Our Lady of Guadalupe -- her message, her love -- is not only for those of Spanish language and culture. But she is the mother of all of us, of every language, every race, every culture," Bishop Zavala said to applause. "Immigration is today's sword, and it must be turned into a plowshare -- an instrument that prunes away all the injustices and serves to cultivate right relationship among nations and peoples," the bishop continued.
California's Catholic bishops have called "for just and humane immigration reform," he said. "As those who have faith in Our Lady of Guadalupe I call you to join us today in demanding immigration legislation that allows us to transcend borders and break down the walls of injustice," Bishop Zavala said. Those walls "view human beings as illegal" and "view undocumented immigrants as criminals, subjecting them to imprisonment and deportation and leaving them without any possibilities of becoming United States citizens," he said.
Among various measures, Bishop Zavala urged immigration legislation that would provide a legal path to citizenship for the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants working and living in the United States and would prioritize the reunification of families separated because of mixed immigration status. Among the thousands of Southern Californians participating in the procession and liturgy was Maria Antonio Rodriguez, a parishioner at St. Anne Church in Santa Monica. She said she was there to affirm her belief that all people are human beings and no one should suffer discrimination.
"I am praying to Our Lady of Guadalupe, that through her people's hearts may be moved, the ones that are putting up the walls," Rodriguez told The Tidings, newspaper of the Los Angeles Archdiocese. "I hope they can change their point of view." Juan Sanchez, 19, attended with a dozen family members. A parishioner at St. Matthias Church in Huntington Park, Sanchez said he was there to celebrate how Mary brings all people together. "If everyone believes in her, then there are no borders with her," said the youth.
Dr. Truc Truong, a physician and parishioner at St. John Neumann in Irvine and St. Cecilia in Tustin, donated the thousands of red and peach roses that surrounded the images of Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Juan Diego near the altar on the stadium field. A Vietnamese-American immigrant who came to the U.S. in 1975, Truong has been donating 2,000 roses weekly to be placed at the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe at Hombre Nuevo, a Catholic multimedia center in El Monte. "Our Lady of Guadalupe is the mother of every single nation, country and every single one of us," said Truong. "The Son of God and the mother of God -- they are together. You can't separate them. She intervenes for us."
Amen to that.
Mahony is a poor excuse for a bishop.
There is no way I would support the LA diocese in any way.
Should have been removed when he refused to provide evidence to the DA on the abuse cases dragging out the sordid affair for years.
Home and family. The people who crossed the border via fraud, trespass, or trafficking, or remained in the USA using forged papers and stolen identities, have homes and families in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador. We should respectfully send them back. They should respectfully go.
Care and compassion. There's no need to be callous toward a person who is sick and hungry. Give them some food and decent clothing for their bus trip south. Notify a Mexican hospital that they're on their way.
Patience and kindness. What if it's a case of somebody's immigration status being screwed up by some inadvertent paperwork mistake or U.S. bureaucratic blunder? Fine. They need some assistance. In the meantime they can stay as guests at Roger Mahony's place, 3424 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90010-2241.
I am not being sarcastic about this. We can have a decent and lawful society, show sincere care for human needs, fight the cruelty of crime and corruption, and even give honest people a path to U.S. citizenship --- a path that starts back in Tegucigalpa or Michoacan --- all under the patronage of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
We're not wrong for wanting to do it right.
I believe that Our Lady of Guadalupe has very special intentions for these people, and that, as "immigration waves" go, they may be the best thing that happened to America in some time.
The Blessed Mother is after all Patroness of the Americas. And I am very grateful for that. I trust her protection.
I agree, 100%. I *cannot* understand why the Catholic heirarchy supports the exploitation of illegal immigrant labor by American employers. (The same economic illiterates support driving up the cost of American labor through minimum wage increases, benefit mandates, etc., etc. ... I'd like to beat them over the head with "Basic Economics" until they see some sense ... but I digress.)
Don't they see that this is, effectively, enslaving the migrant for the benefit of the citizen, which the Bible explicitly condemns?
That would be lawful immigration I'm speaking of. I have very rarely heard conservatives speak out against orderly, decent, respectful, lawful immigrants. My parish has a lot of them. As for the lawbreakers, they might also someday be on the path to U.S. citizenship. That path starts in their home countries. Let them go home with our blessing and God's, and do it right next time.
I could see Yeesh6 or 7, but you went all the way to 9. You might need to lay off the caffeine.
I agree. We have aborted so many of our own that unless Our Lady sends us new Christian people, we will be overrun by Muslims just as in Europe. And then we will disappear.
I have been very distressed by some of the hostility towards Latin Americans here, and even more distressed because a lot of it is really nothing but Protestants (probably mostly elderly) expressing their hatred of Catholics. I think many of these people would actually be happy to see more Muslims come into the US - anything but Latin American Catholics.
Do you really mean that? Also, a reminder that once you mention Protestants, you jeopardize the Caucus designation.
Our Lady won’t let us down.
This article is indicative of exactly why I don’t have a devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe. I really abhor the notion that every illegal that has an Our Lady of Guadalupe sticker on the back of their truck is a great person. Perhaps that’s the cynicism of living in Houston speaking, but it’s the reality here in town.
It’s a fashion statement on the young women here and a car adornment for the men. I don’t see it as a devotion in many of the Hispanics here in town, so much as a “La Raza” statement.