Two regions, one Mother of God

Two regions, one Mother of God

For people around the world, not just Catholics, people have heard of the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus.  But the mother of God comes in many forms all over the world.  But two stand out.  What are their stories, where do they come from?

Our Lady of Guadalupe

This form of Virgin Mary is the Virgin most commonly known in Mexico. The first sighting of the Virgin of Guadalupe was in Tepeyac Hill, which is now the suburb of Mexico City, by St. Juan Diego. St. Juan Diego was an Aztec that converted to Christianity, and Mary told him to go to construct a shine where she appeared. But St. Juan needed permission from the bishop. He told the bishop what he saw and what the Virgin Mary asked from him, but the bishop wanted a sign, or some kind of proof, St. Juan returned to the Tepeyac Hill, and once again the mother of God appeared. In front of her emerged roses, and she told St. Juan to collect them, so St. Juan gathered the roses and piled them in his cloak. When he went to talk to the bishop, with his cloak filled with roses, the bishop surprisingly noticed the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe appear on the cloak.  The bishop saw this as a miracle and gave permission to build the church. If you look closer at the image of her, you will notice many symbols, one of these symbols is the moon she stands on. She, standing on the moon, is signifying that she is more powerful than darkness since the Aztecs saw the moon as an evil God. Her clothing is filled with stars, representing that she came from Heaven.  The cloak can be found in Mexico City, in the shrine of the Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe.

The Lady of Fatima

The Lady of Fatima was very well known thanks to three children who were lucky enough to be chosen to witness her. The story begins when Marto, his sister Jacinta, and their cousin Lucia dos Santos, were doing their duties as shepherds in their village of Fatima, Portugal. All of a sudden, an angel appeared to them, telling them to not be afraid, they encountered the angel two more times, until the next vision they saw was the Virgin Mary on May 13th, 1917.  They described her as wearing white, holding a rosary made of pearls, and shining brighter than the sun.  She told them she will appear to them the 13th of every month. In every appearance, the Virgin Mary told them to pray the rosary to help stop WWI. So they did and word spread like wildfire. Some people believed, others thought they were just children playing around, but many people still came to witness the sightings. On September 13th, Lucia announced that the Virgin Mary will make a miracle so that everyone would believe, nearly 70,000 people came, and this miracle came to be called, “the Miracle of the Sun.”  The sun emerged from behind clouds that spun for about 10 minutes.  Witnesses say they saw the sun dance, and that the sky turned various colors.  Shortly after their visions, Marto and Jacinta died from the flu, but Lucia dos Santos was told by the Virgin Mary that she will live for a long time, and died at age 97.  But the children didn’t die before Fatima left them three secrets.  The first secret revealed what Hell truly is, with rivers of fire and souls screaming with torment.  The second secret predicted the ending of WWI and the starting of WWII.  And the third secret was revealed in 2000, telling how Christians would be persecuted by soldiers, causing the death of a Bishop wearing white, kneeling to the cross.  Our Lady of Fatima’s feast day is on May 13th.