Guadalupe and God’s Word

A Biblical-Theological Interpretation of Her Apparition

When Miguel Sánchez published Imagen de la Virgen María in 1648, he did more than document the first apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the New World. Scholars agree that his account became a lens through which clergy and faithful interpreted Our Lady of Guadalupe by promoting a set of Marian themes that explained the significance of the apparition. In the pages that follow, I will present the key interpretative elements of Sánchez’s book—primarily, Mary as the Woman from Revelation 12, the New Eve and the New Ark of the Covenant—and examine how his Patristic-influenced theology made a compelling argument for the uniqueness of her apparition.1 This will include a brief review of the liturgical readings from her feast day that reflect the typological interpretation employed by Sánchez.

The details of Sánchez’s account of the apparitions, though perhaps familiar to many, bear outlining to provide context for his theological reasoning. The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to Juan Diego, a humble Aztec convert, in the year 1531 on Tepeyac Hill outside of Mexico City and instructed him to ask Juan Bernardino Zumárraga, archbishop of México, to build a sanctuary in her name of Guadalupe (Sabe, hijo, que yo soy María Virgen Madre de Dios verdadero. Quiero que se me funde aquí una casa y ermita, templo en que mostrarme piadosa Madre contigo).2 (Know, my child, that I am Mary, Virgin Mother of the one true God. I wish to have a sanctuary and home built for me, a church in which to be a merciful Mother to you).

Accepting his mission, Juan Diego proceeded to the archbishop’s palace to make her request, after which the archbishop asked him for a sign to prove it was she who had spoken to him. When Juan Diego recounted this to the Blessed Virgin Mary, she told him to climb Tepeyac and bring down the flowers growing there. He returned to her with the flowers in his ayatl, a type of mantle used by the indigenous people of México, which she arranged before sending him to Zumárraga. The archbishop received him at the palace, at which point Juan Diego unfolded the ends of his ayatl to reveal not only the flowers—which had been growing miraculously out of season—but also an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary as she had appeared to him. Zumárraga and his prelates fell to their knees at the sight. According to Sánchez’s account, she appeared to Juan Diego a total of five times, much of their dialogue revealing the tender attention one might expect from a mother, and inspiring the same tender devotion in her son. It was 100 years later that Miguel Sánchez documented their story and another 100 years before Pope Benedict XIV declared her feast day.

Since Imagen de la Virgen María is held together by its association of Our Lady of Guadalupe with the Woman of Revelation 12, it is critical that a comparison of Sánchez’s description of her image with Revelation 12 attest to their resemblance. A line by line analysis of the two texts confirms this:

Revelation 12: 1-3 NRSV Imagen de La Virgen María3 Observations
A great portent appeared in heaven: La túnica es talar, en los claros de rosado muy claro y en los oscuros de carmín muy apretado … El manto es de color azul celeste … (The tunic is ankle length, in light shades of pale pink and dark shades of deep crimson. The mantle is sky blue). Sánchez describes the colors of the Virgin’s tunic and mantle in colors that evoke the sky—pink, red and blue.
A woman clothed with the sun, Esta la imagen toda como en nicho o tabernáculo, en medio de un sol, que forma por lo lejos resplandores de color amarillo y naranjado. (The image appears in the middle of a sun, as if in a niche or tabernacle, which at a distance, forms rays of yellow and orange.) In addition to colors of sunlight, Sánchez sets the image in a sun, surrounded, as if in a niche.
With the moon under her feet, Está a los pies una media luna…y en su medio recibe todo el cuerpo de la Virgen (A crescent moon is at her feet…and it bears the body of the Virgin in its center). By noting that the moon supports her body, the implication is that the Virgin is not floating or superimposed, but that the moon is literally under her feet.
And on her head, a crown of twelve stars. La corona real que asienta sobre el manto, con puntos o almenas de oro sobre azul (The regal crown over her mantle with spikes or merlons of gold on blue). Here, Sánchez uses more painterly language to imply stars, contrasting the color of the points of the crown against the blue background.

Although I think Sánchez’s description is a faithful rendering of the image on the ayatl, his choice of words was clearly meant to evoke the Woman from Revelation 12, and thus connect her to Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Miguel Sánchez held a number of ecclesiastical positions in his native México (then New Spain) in the early part of the 17th century. Renowned locally as a Patrologist, his obituary claimed he knew all of St. Augustine by heart.4 In writing Imagen de la Virgen María, Sánchez sought to interpret the apparitions using Biblical typology consistent with his background in the early Church Fathers. In the beginning of his work, Sánchez states unequivocally that the image reminded him of the Woman from Revelation 12, such that he made it his mission to document the connection between the two images—“el original por profecía, y en la imagen de la tierra el trasunto por milagro.”5 (the original (image) from prophecy, and the image on earth—its miraculous copy). Moreover, he attests to the traditional interpretation of the Woman representing the Church, and attributes the foundation of the Church in México to its image on the ayatl.6 In support of his claim, Sánchez quotes who he believed to be St. Augustine, but who, later research revealed, was his contemporary, Quodvultdeus from his “Third Homily on the Creed.”7 He wrote: “… the virgin signifies Mary, the chaste one, who gave birth to our chaste head. She also embodied in herself a figure of the holy Church: namely, while bearing a son, she remained a virgin so that the Church throughout time bears her members.”8

However, like René Laurentin, who later characterized Revelation 12 as “a kind of meeting point of all the biblical avenues converging on the Virgin,” Sánchez also saw rich insights down those avenues and explored the significance of biblical Marian types like the New Eve, the Ark of the Covenant, and, to a lesser degree, the Daughter of Zion within the framework of Revelation 12.9 Even a cursory reading of Genesis 3 and Revelation 12 yields parallels between Eve and the Woman. The image of the dragon awaiting the birth of the Woman’s son to consume him points to the culmination of the enmity between Eve’s offspring and the Serpent.10 Another common element of both passages is the painful birth which recalls God’s curse of Eve in Genesis 3:15. Finally, as Eve had been considered the mother of humanity, the other offspring in Revelation 12:17 points to a type of motherhood of new humanity.11 In addition, Sánchez offers two new “types” that tie the historical facts of the apparition to this type of Mary as the New Eve—Tepeyac as the New Eden, and Juan Diego’s ayatl as the new “covering” for nakedness.12 He begins by recounting the creation story, explaining how God separated darkness from light, and named its source the sun, and how in a similar way this Woman clothed in the sun, in the image of Guadalupe, seeks to establish a new earthly paradise.

… nuestra prodigiosa mujer luciendo a un mismo tiempo todas las luces y bajándolas a su tierra quiera fundar en ella un nuevo paraíso. Desempeño de aquestos piadosos pronósticos sois vos esclarecida señora, María Virgen y soberana Madre en vuestra imagen milagrosa de Guadalupe13 (our prodigious woman dresses in stars, and at the same time, brings them down to earth to found a new Paradise. I discern in these visions that you are revealed as the Virgin Mary and Queen Mother in your miraculous image of Guadalupe).

The other image Sánchez employs is that of the leaves that Adam and Eve used to cover their nakedness in Genesis 3:7. The first couple met God dressed in fig leaves, but he dressed them in skins before expelling them from Eden. Sanchez claims God would not allow them to take these “relics of paradise” from the Garden.14 In contrast to this punishment, Mary appears on the ayatl woven from the leaves of the local maguey, a plant of the New Eden.15 Consistent with his training in Patristics, Sánchez presents these details in the context of recapitulation, first promoted with respect to Mary as the New Eve by St. Justin Martyr, but developed more fully by St. Irenaeus.16

I believe Sánchez’s various presentations of Our Lady of Guadalupe as the New Eve are heavily influenced by St. Irenaeus’ doctrines of recapitulation and recirculation. Originally found in St. Paul’s letters, St. Irenaeus further developed the idea that Jesus achieved salvation for mankind by replacing humanity’s history of sinful disobedience, which began with Adam, with his act of humility and obedience, thus becoming the New Adam. In similar fashion, the Blessed Virgin Mary, through her act of obedience, becomes the New Eve. Luigi Gambero has called the positive aspect of recapitulation “the restoration of the entire human race in the image of God,” and Sánchez’s claim that Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to restore Paradise on Tepeyac can be seen in this light.17 Closely linked to St. Irenaeus’s doctrine of recapitulation is his teaching on recirculation, which affirms that the act of salvation works by reversing the act of damnation:

Just as, once something has been bound, it cannot be loosed except by undoing the knot in reverse order, even so the first knots were untied by the (undoing of the) second ones, and, inversely, these last from the first18

The doctrine can be seen at work in Sánchez’s exposition on the ayatl. Woven from New Paradise and containing an image of the New Eve, the ayatl is antithetical to the loincloths of Genesis 3:7— made from fig leaves of the original Paradise and woven by the original Eve—which sought to cover up the effects of the Fall.

With respect to Mary as the antitype of the Ark of the Covenant, one author has stated that the context of Revelation 12 suggests a parallel between the two and points out that Tradition has maintained this.19 When read together with Revelation 11:19—“God’s temple in the heavens opened, and the Ark of the Covenant was seen” (NSRV)—the analogy between the two becomes clearer. Laurentin notes the connection as well, referencing the Woman from Revelation 12 who becomes the “eschatological resting place of Yahweh-Savior.”20 Sánchez’s Imagen de la Virgen María contains descriptions and narrative elements that promote this connection among Mary, who carried the New Covenant in her womb, the Ark that carried the stone tablets of the original Covenant, and the Woman from Revelation 12.

Sánchez affirms that Mary is the true ark and calls her the “tesorera propietaria de Cristo”21 (exclusive treasurer of Christ). At the end of his account of the third apparition, he draws a parallel between the call of Moses and Juan Diego. He relates how Moses had been called by God to the top of Sinai three times, the last time to discuss the construction of the tabernacle, and claims that, similarly, Juan Diego had been selected to see to the construction of a sanctuary for Our Lady of Guadalupe. In descriptions of her image, he refers to her as surrounded by light, the crown on her head, and the moon at her feet, forming a niche as if held in a tabernacle.22 Additionally, Sánchez suggests her mantle is like the “screening curtain” from Numbers 4:5, under which the Ark of the Covenant was kept during its sojourn in the wilderness.23 These interpretations unite Revelation 12 to the type of the Ark of the Covenant through his descriptions of the image. It was the Ark which allowed the presence of God to reside among the people, shielding the people from his overwhelming glory. When considered in light of Revelation 12:17, the conversion of the people of México is evidence that this newly founded Church “keeps the commandments and bears testimony” to the contents of the New Ark. Sánchez weaves into the narrative itself other details related to the Ark. For example, after viewing the image, the archbishop of México keeps it in his possession while her sanctuary is being constructed, recalling the temporary stay of the Ark in Obed-Edon from 2 Samuel 6, and prompting Sánchez to write in characteristically florid language:

Claro está, que con el depósito de María, arca verdadera de Dios, se habían de granjear colmadas bendiciones. Digamos todos: ¡O, bendito obispo! ¡O bendito palacio!24 (Of course, the safekeeping of Mary, true ark of God, would reap plentiful blessings. Let us all say, “Oh, blessed bishop! O blessed palace!”).

I find the image of the angel, attending Our Lady of Guadalupe’s mantle and assisting the Woman in her flight in Revelations 12, suggestive of the cherubim on the cover of the historical Ark of the Covenant, though Sánchez does not include it in his account.

Sánchez also alludes to Mary as the Daughter of Zion and one of the “poor of the Lord” (the anawim). By way of background, recall that Ignace de la Potterie has examined the type of Mary as the Daughter of Zion and identified one of her roles as “‘Mother’ of the people of God (‘Mother-Zion’).”25 Sánchez interprets “Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised … His holy mountain … is the joy of all the earth” (Ps 47: 1-2 NRSV) to mean that:

Habla David de la fundación de la Iglesia, con título de monte y de ciudad, profetizando la conversión de la gentilidad a ella26 (David speaks of the foundation of the Church, as city and mountain, predicting the conversion of the gentiles to her).

He sees, in Psalm 47, what de la Potterie sees in Psalm 87—Zion as the source of joy for being the foundation of the Church, the Mother of the people of God who have returned to him. In addition, he attests to the tradition of Mary living on Mount Zion, and affirms that these parallels permit him to associate Guadalupe with the prophecy.

The case for Mary as one of the anawim is more tenuous. In an essay on Marian apparitions, Michael Spencer points out one characteristic of them which is absent from Sánchez’s Imagen de la Virgen María. Writing on the Magnificat, he says, “The theme of lowliness overlaps with a related biblical theme that is relevant here too as well, the theme of the poor of Yahweh … Not only was Mary poor, but her personal appearances have been to the other poor people.”27

This association of Mary with the poor, the anawim, seems a natural fit in the context of the conversion of the indigenous people of México. However, where modern scholars see the meeting of two worlds, Sánchez reads only the defeat of idolatry and darkness.28 A closer reading of his narrative, however, does yield support for a view of Our Lady of Guadalupe as the anawim.

First, one must note the way in which Juan Diego and Mary address one another—she calls him, “hijo” (son), and Juan calls her, “madre” (mother). Sánchez emphasizes her maternity from this earliest exchange, recalling how Jesus entrusted his mother to John the Apostle.29 Second, the tone of her request for a sanctuary is anything but commanding. During the first apparition, Sánchez relates how she “wants” a house built for her, and at their subsequent meeting, she “asks, entrusts, and begs” him to go to Zumárraga with her request.30 Later, when he fails to meet with her as they had previously agreed, she listens with love and confirms her protection. Her motherly permissiveness reflects the sentiment of Abbot Ambrose Autpert, who wrote, “For she, who is bound by the love of childbearing, is tolerant of her children’s irreverence”31

Having examined the various Marian types developed by Sánchez, I will now review the evidence of his influence, and the reasons why it may have spread. Scholars like Timothy Matovina and D.A. Brading both document that Sánchez’s Imagen de la Virgen María was the first published account of the Guadalupan apparitions.32 According to the historical evidence they present, Imagen de la Virgen María was very influential in shaping ideas about Our Lady of Guadalupe and widespread in its impact. Brading points out that Sánchez’s typologies were recycled among generations of criollo (Creole) clergy.33 Matovina supports this assessment and adds that approximately 100 published sermons echoing Sánchez’s style and reasoning appeared between the publication of Imagen and 1800.34 What made Sánchez work so impactful? From an historical perspective, its format and ideas appealed to an educated criollo and clerical elite, proud to read how the apparition amounted to “New Spain’s divine election.”35 From a theological perspective, however, Brading goes deeper and points to Sánchez’s use of Augustinian types in interpreting the events of Tepeyac as perhaps the most influential aspect of his work.36 I agree with Brading. Sánchez identifies many close parallels with salvation history that have great homiletic appeal, and I would attribute their efficacy to what Gambero identifies as the central theme of Augustine’s Mariology—the idea of predestination.37

Gambero writes, that for Augustine, Mary represents the “second in a series of events” leading to the salvation of believers, and that God chose Mary specifically to fulfill her role in salvation history through her personal role as a mother.38 Sánchez appears to have extended this predestination from the person of Mary to her image, and connected it to the salvation of New Spain. Evidence for this view can be found directly in Imagen de la Virgen María, where Sánchez writes, “por mano de María Virgen se había ganado y conquistado aqueste Nuevo Mundo,” (this New World was conquered and won by the hand of the Virgin Mary), and later in the context of Revelation 12, he concludes:

Que los conquistadores ganaron esta tierra, hacienda oficio de ángeles, para que ganada y reducida a la fe, la pusiesen en manos de Dios…que la dicha de conquistarse esta tierra, era porque en ella se había de aparecer María Virgen en su santa imagen de Guadalupe (emphasis added), con que enteramente pudiesen ellos cantar la Victoria.39 (That the Conquistadors won this land, doing the work of angels, so that, brought into the faith, they would put it in God’s hands. The good fortune of conquering this land was because, in it, the Virgin Mary would appear in her holy image of Guadalupe) (emphasis added).

This idea of the efficaciousness of divine images, though Patristic, is not Augustinian, but comes from the writings of St. John Damascene, with whom Sánchez was no doubt familiar, given various references to him in his book. For Sánchez, then, God predestined Mary to cooperate in the salvation of New Spain directly through the workings of her miraculous image.

According to Brading, Damascene developed an idea called the “Great Chain of Images,” along which all creation derives its image from God, and where an image represents not only its original, but what its creator intended to reveal about the original.40 Sánchez seems to apply this idea when he quotes from a passage from Autpert which he erroneously attributes to Augustine.41

Y cuando saca retocada ésta imagen pone en el fecit de ella, no solamente los aprecios de la imagen suya, sino las prevenidas estimaciones del dibujo en la tierra … Puso a sus ojos para original a la tierra con todas sus criaturas, y halló era muy tosca …Convocó a todos los ángeles en un coro los representó para original, y conoció ser todos inferiores … Subióse a Dios y suspendióse en Dios, hallando solo a Dios por verdadero original de María, y María solo por digna imagen copiada de Dios.42 (And when he finishes the image, puts in it not only what he appreciates of his own image, but what will be appreciated on earth … He set before him the earth and all its creatures as models and found them too rude. He convoked a choir of all the angels as models and found them inferior … reaching and stopping at God, discovering only in God a worthy model for Mary, and only in Mary a worthy image of God).

Through the theological and historical evidence he provides, Sánchez argues that John’s vision at Patmos of the Woman clothed in the sun represents Mary and the Church, engaged with her offspring in the defeat of the dragon, but it also prefigures the defeat of idolatry 1400 years later in México through the miracle of Mary’s image. As Brading argues, Sánchez “reenacts” his Mariology with the events of the past century, allowing the apparition to breathe life into these theological realities.43

A more detailed historical examination would be necessary to assess the full extent of Sánchez’s influence on the liturgy for Our Lady of Guadalupe’s feast day. However the papal brief declaring the feast and its associated readings share similarities with Imagen de la Virgen María. On May 2, 1754, Benedict XIV declared Our Lady of Guadalupe patroness of New Spain and provided her an official feast day on December 12.44 The papal brief, Non Equidem Est, provided the Scripture readings for her Mass and Divine Office, and included an account of the apparition itself. More importantly, Benedict XIV describes the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe as “muy semejante a aquella que se escribe en el Apocalipsis”45 (very similar to the image written about in the Apocalypse). He also makes reference to “la Reyna del Cielo rodeado de un arco iris” (the Queen of Heaven surrounded by a rainbow) which brings to mind a comparison between the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Noah’s ark.46 This comparison, though not featured prominently among the other Marian types, is significant in my mind because Sánchez ties it to a miracle attributed to the image. He recounts the story of a flood in Mexico City which occurred in 1631, nearly 100 years after the original apparition, and claims the intercession of the image saved the city from disaster. In this event, he sees a parallel with the story of Noah, who began building his ark 100 years before he used it, to save the remnants of creation from the Flood.47 Given the historical evidence for the popularity and influence of Imagen de la Virgen María, I find this allusion to a rainbow in Non Equidem Est—where it does not exist in the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe—suggestive textual evidence of its direct influence on Benedict XIV.

The first readings from her feast day Mass are either Zechariah 2:14-17 or Revelation 11:19a and 12:1-6, 10. Evoking the type of Daughter of Zion, Zechariah 2 announces that “many nations shall join themselves to the Lord “(NRSV). This passage recalls the role of Mary as “Mother Zion,” attested by Psalm 87 and associated with the effects of the apparition on the people of México by Sánchez. As previously discussed, Sánchez went to great lengths to unpack Revelation 12 to show its foreshadowing of events in New Spain. It has been interpreted as symbolizing the birth of the Church, and if the connection between Mary and the Woman is affirmed, demonstrating the spiritual maternity of Mary. The Gospel readings, either the narratives of the Annunciation or the Visitation, reflect certain elements which one also finds in Imagen de la Virgen María, such as the association of Mary with the anawim (“handmaid of the Lord”) and the type of the Ark (Mary’s stay with Elizabeth prefigured by the Ark’s delay in Obed-Edom). The Daily Office also contains readings that share common Mariological themes with Sánchez. The Office of Readings includes Psalm 24, which connects Juan Diego’s various ascents of Tepeyac to those “who will climb the mountain of the Lord” (NRSV). The other psalm for the office is Psalm 87, previously discussed in connection with Psalm 47, as a source for the type of Daughter of Zion. Though not conclusive evidence, I believe that the papal brief and liturgical readings sufficiently reflect Sánchez’s ideas to suggest his influence, albeit filtered through a century of pastoral applications.

In his commentary on the book of Revelation, Autpert wrote, “the Blessed and devout Virgin … daily gives birth to new peoples from which the general Body of the Mediator is formed.”48 God predestined Mary to participate in the birth of his Son, Jesus Christ, and his Church, at a specific time and place, eternally and forever. Miguel Sánchez’s Imagen de la Virgen María is a testimony to how Scripture and Church Tradition attest to this unique mission and its activity in history. He synthesized Scripture and the Early Church Fathers’ reflections on it and applied it to a specific time and place to produce a theological work that continues to influence the Church’s thinking about Mary through the liturgy for the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations to English are my own. 
  2. Miguel Sánchez, Imagen de la Virgen María de Dios de Guadalupe (1648), in Testimonios Históricos Guadalupanos, ed. Ernesto de la Torre Villar and Ramiro Navarro de Anda (México, D.F.: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1982), 180. 
  3. Sánchez, Imagen de la Virgen María…, 199-200. 
  4. Timothy Matovina, “Guadalupe at Calvary: Patristic Theology in Miguel Sánchez’s Imagen de la Virgen María (1648),” Theological Studies 64 (2003): 800. 
  5. Sánchez, 157-8. 
  6. Ibid., 163. 
  7. Matovina, 807. 
  8. Quodvultdeus, “Third Homily on the Creed” in The Creedal Homilies, trans. Thomas Macy Finn. (Mahwah: The Newman Press, 2004), 67. 
  9. René Laurentin, Queen of Heaven: A Short Treatise on Marian Theology (London: Macmillan and Company, 1956), 33. 
  10. J. Edgar Bruns, “The Contrasted Women of Apocalypse 12 and 17,” The Catholic Biblical Quarterly, XXVI, no. 4 (October 1964): 460. 
  11. William S. Kurz, “Mary, Woman and Mother in God’s Saving New Testament Plan,” Nova et Vetera, English Edition, 11, no. 3 (2013): 815. 
  12. Matovina, 804. 
  13. Sánchez, 218. 
  14. Ibid.,229. 
  15. Ibid. 
  16. Matovina, 797. 
  17. Luigi Gambero, Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought, trans Thomas Buffer (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1999), 53. 
  18. Ibid., 55. 
  19. Kurz, 813. 
  20. Rene Laurentin, A Short Treatise on the Virgin Mary (Washington: AMI Press, 1991), 270. 
  21. Sánchez,  198. 
  22. Ibid., 200. 
  23. Ibid., 220. 
  24. Ibid., 195. 
  25. Ignace de la Potterie, Mary in the Mystery of the Covenant (New York: Alba House, 1992), xxvi. 
  26. Sánchez, 239. 
  27. Michael D. Spencer, “The Apparitions of Mary in the Light of the Theology of the Bible,” Review for Religious 48, no. 5 (September/October 1989): 763. 
  28. Matovina, 809. 
  29. Sánchez, 179. 
  30. Ibid., 180-182. 
  31. Gambero, Luigi. Mary in the Middle Ages: The Blessed Virgin Mary in the Thought of Medieval Latin Theologians, trans. Thomas Buffer (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2005), 45. 
  32. Matovina, 795; D.A. Brading, Mexican Phoenix: Our Lady of Guadalupe: Image and Tradition Across Five Centuries (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001), 55. 
  33. Brading, 74. 
  34. Matovina, 805. 
  35. Ibid., 800. 
  36. D.A. Brading, 165. 
  37. Luigi Gambero, 218. 
  38. Ibid., 218-9. 
  39. Sánchez, 171. 
  40. D.A. Brading, 17. 
  41. Timothy Matovina, 802-3. 
  42. Sánchez, 163-4. 
  43. Brading, 60; Juan Luis Bastero, “Apariciones marianas: praxis y teología,” Scripta Theologica, 43 (2011): 351. 
  44. Brading, 132. 
  45. Benedict XIV, “Breve de la Santidad Benedicto XIV declarando patrona de México a María Santísima de Guadalupe,” (1754) in Colección de Documentos para la Historia de la Guerra de Independencia de México, ed. J.E. Hernández y Dávalos (México, D.F.: José María Sandoval, Impresor, 1879), 143. 
  46. Ibid., 142. 
  47. Sánchez, 223. 
  48. Benedict XVI, “General Audience,” Vatican Website,  April 22, 2009, accessed April 25, 2014, 
Paulino Forte About Paulino Forte

Paulino Forte is pursuing a master's degree in theology at Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology at Seton Hall University and works in the financial services industry in New York City. He lives with his wife and three daughters in Middletown, New Jersey, and attends the Church of St. Leo the Great, where he is active in music ministry.


  1. Avatar Martin B. Drew says:

    Thank you, Mr. Forte for this excellent article on Guadalupe . Our cathedral here in Dallas is named Our lady of Guadalupe with many archdioceses and dioceses having her as patroness . And Mary is the patroness of the Americas. Yes and later apparitions of Mary were given to unknown and poor persons. Yet these apparitions spiritually assisted others. I have visited in Paris the chapel where Mary appeared to St. Sister Catherine Laboure DC of the St. Vincent de Paul Daughters of Charity, in 1830. As you know there was La Salette in 1846, Lourde, in 1858, Fatima in 1917 and Belgium in 1932. All poor and unknown persons, yet from the power of God through Mary persons in those areas began to attend mass, receive communion and prosper economically .

  2. Avatar Catherine Reed says:

    How lovely, succinct and thorough! As one who never tires of studying all aspects of these monumental and pivitol events of 1531, each of your insights enhances appreciation for subtle, sublime and cohesive Mission of Our Dear Mother, Our Lady of Guadelupe. Wonderful and much appreciated!


  1. […] Steven Dillon, SN 2014 the Culture War Divide Became Deeper, Darker & Weirder – C. G. A Biblical-Theological Interpretation of Her Apparition – Paulino Forte Getting in Touch Again: Date Night – Kevin DiCamillo, Catholic Lane […]