Before the Christmas season "officially" begins on December 16, day when the first Posada takes place, Mexicans join together for the festivities of La Virgen de Guadalupe, Our Lady of Guadalupe, on December 12. This is one of the most important dates in the Mexican calendar.
On this date, thousands of
the faithful to Our Lady of Guadalupe, from all over the country make the most important
pilgrimage of all those undertaken during the year to the Basílica of Guadalupe, in Mexico City, where the miraculous image of la Virgen Morena is kept.
Some of the pilgrims arrive on their knees as a sign of their enormous devotion and gratitude for a favor received.
There are many groups of dancers and musicians that have come to offer their art to the Virgin.
By nighttime, the atrium is filled to bursting with pilgrims. People of all ages and of all regions of the country gather together, physically as well as spiritually.
A mass is officiated inside the Basilica and it is at this moment that I could really feel the warmth and spiritual richness of the people.
Although it is in the Basílica de Guadalupe where the most important rituals and celebrations of this special date take place, there are fiestas all over the country in Honor of Mexico's Patron Saint.
Practically everywhere where there is an altar to the Virgin, a special celebration is held on her day.
By the early hours of the morning, in every niche and cranny of the country, the burst of fire crackers is heard and their brilliant lights crown this great fiesta dedicated to the Mother of all Mexicans...Our Lady of Guadalupe.
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