The apparition of our Lady of Guadalupe is my favorite among the appearances of Mary in our poor world after her Assumption into heavenly glory. In every way she is the exemplar of maternal and maidenly beauty, “the highest honor of our race” particularly of the feminine variety. Her words are poetry accompanied by bird song; she is clothed in the garments of the dawn. Her presence radiates a transforming light that makes the barren rocks blossom with roses, a miraculous springtime in winter. She speaks with a queenly courtesy and a motherly tenderness to a simple Indian peasant.
The image of herself that she left on that Indian’s cloak was instrumental in converting millions of his Aztec compatriots. We are honored to claim her as the special patroness of our monastic church and it is our prayer that we who live in her house may become more like her each day. It is the Poor Clare’s vocation to be other “Mary’s” in the Church, bringing forth Christ in the souls of men and women through our liturgical and private prayer and nurturing that life through our dedication to beauty, truth and goodness.
Dostoyevsky once wrote that “Beauty will save the world”. It certainly was true for the New World in the 16th century. Through the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe, may all her children be renewed in hope by her God-given loveliness and seek to spread her message of divine mercy to all who suffer in the darkness and ugliness of sin.
St. Nicholas did arrive last week, despite the fact that some of us were still under the weather. Blessed Guadete (Rejoice) Sunday to one and all!