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A PILGRIMAGE



When I first heard about our Guadalupe pilgrimage, I wasn’t so excited about it. You see, many of us have been to the Villa (home to the Basilica de Guadalupe complex that hosts the Tilma with the image of Our Lady). Our family has also visited several anthropological museums and ruins and pyramids in Mexico.


We questioned why would it take a whole week to visit one site? What else is there to do? What new things are we going to learn?


Besides, Mexico City is barely 2 hours away in a plane. Many airlines leave Houston every 30 minutes to any of its airports.


Sometimes we don’t appreciate what seems to be easily attained, and we stride for what is difficult.


So, I pondered… and recalled something… Now, this might be just a folk tale, yet there is some truth about it…


Many years ago, when I was still a child, I heard a story of a lady from my hometown that had gone with a group all the way to Medjugorje to visit Our Lady. This was when the apparitions were happening.


For this trip, back 80’s, most likely it had taken this group at least 4 plane changes to get all the way to Bosnia.


Once over there, this lady was very excited on being in the same soil our Lady was appearing. They prayed with the other groups and their hearts were full of love and gratefulness for the experience and the opportunity to being there.


At some point it is said that one of the seers had a message for the group of Mexicans. To the shock of this group, Our Lady was simply asking why they were all there if they had her back in their own home.


You see, this might be just a made-up story, but makes me think. Do I really appreciate what I have where I am?


We might have studied about Our Lady of Guadalupe’s image; we might know the story. Do we understand the importance of her pregnancy? Of the Nascent Jesus inside of her? Do I appreciate that she is right at home?


Going on this pilgrimage I might complain about the price of the plane ticket. About the fact that I have already visited some of these places. Maybe the tour company will take us to restaurants that cater to tourists (fake Mexican food), and not real Mexican places. But my real wonder is what will I really learn from this trip. Why is God calling me to go, even if I can’t.


Two things. God is calling me to go, and at the same time there are things in my life that could make it impossible for me to go. Yet, I have booked the trip, and if at the last minute I am not able to attend, is because that is what God’s will really be. I will know I trusted, and I tried.


Second, I tend to think I know it all. Several years ago, I was taking some home economics classes with the Opus Dei. One of them was sewing buttons. I thought I knew how to sew them. I thought I knew how to thread a needle. In less than an hour I learned how to thread a needle in an easier way, and how to sew a button and not mess it up.


So, my friend, I invite you to think about this. And see if God and His Mother are calling you to come with us to Mexico to visit her at her home. See what His will for you is.


God bless y’all!

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