Culture

Celebrate El Día De La Virgen De Guadalupe At Any Of These Churches Across The Country

For almost 500 years, Roman Catholics around the world have been celebrating Dec. 12 as the Día de la Virgen de Guadalupe—the day on which the Virgin Mary appeared to Juan Diego in the hills of Tepeyac , Mexico. Although the apparition of the Virgin Mary is said to have been shown to Juan Diego four times, the final time was on December 12, 1531.

The festivities at churches around the country in the U.S. start celebrating ‘La Patrona de Mexico’ on Tuesday, December 11, with some putting on a colorful procession a full half day before midnight on December 12.

The holiday is something many Catholics hold near and dear to their hearts.

The decorations honoring La Virgen de Guadalupe are as beautiful as the reason for the day of celebration.

If you decided to sleep in this morning and skipped midnight mass, here are some places where you can still attend mass while getting a belly full of tamales:

Los Angeles – Plaza Mexico

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With Los Angeles having the largest Mexican-American population in the country, you’ll easily find multiple misas to choose from, extending across East LA down to Lynwood.

If you want to treat your mom to some champurrado because you made her late for midnight mass, make it up by heading to Plaza Mexico in Lynwood where a beautiful large mural of La Virgencita is displayed. There you can place flowers if you can’t make the 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. mass.

Los Angeles – Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels

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In downtown LA? You can start your day off with a 7 a.m. or 8 a.m. mass if you’re near the Cathedral of our Angels, or if you prefer to wait to go to mass in the evening, Aztec dancers will be performing at 6:30 p.m. with mass honoring the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe at 7 p.m.

Chicago – Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe

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When you have a shrine named after La Virgencita, you know you need to make room for hundreds of worshippers on both Dec. 11 and 12.

Pilgrims from around Chicago and the Midwest travel to Des Plaines, Illinois to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe to pray and sing ‘Las Mañanitas’. In addition to midnight mass, pilgrims can pray at masses spaced throughout the day until 7 p.m. at night.

Miami – Our Lady of Guadalupe

Miami’s Mexican community is small, but mighty—and when it comes to celebrating el Día de la Virgen de Guadalupe, they go big.

From midnight until 7 p.m. on December 12, the church will host multiple masses with live mariachis to sing traditional songs to get the party started for the birthday girl, La Virgencita.

New York  – Church of Saint Agnes

You know your mom, abuela and tia are going to want to head to misa as soon as work ends.

Join them at the Church of Saint Agnes in midtown Manhattan for live mariachi before and after the mass for La Virgen de Guadalupe on Dec. 12. Mass begins at 6 p.m.


READ: People Across The Internet Are Sharing Their Celebrations For La Virgen De Guadalupe

Are you going to be celebrating el Día de la Virgen de Guadalupe this year? Let us know in the comments and share this article with your friends!

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Meet ‘Padre Cheke,’ The Mexican Priest Combining Religion And Tech On TikTok

Culture

Meet ‘Padre Cheke,’ The Mexican Priest Combining Religion And Tech On TikTok

A Mexican priest has turned to social media to meet young people where they are – on TikTok. He’s using the popular social media app to help “bring young people closer to God” and him becoming an actual influencer in the process is just a coincidence. But a very successful one at that.

Known as Padre Cheke, the priest from Puebla already has nearly one million followers on TikTok and has gained millions of likes on his videos. So just what does a Catholic priest upload to TikTok?

Padre Cheke is a massive hit on TikTok for uploading religious content.

Ezequiel Padilla is “Padre Cheke,” a Catholic priest and rector of the Chapel of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and San Cayetano in Puebla. He is also a new star of TikTok. He currently has almost 700,000 followers and 3.2 million likes on his platform.

Padre Cheke has become famous for using TikTok trends and using them to give religious messages to his followers and anyone who comes across his videos.

With the onset of the pandemic and confinement, Father Cheke decided to implement new strategies to keep people from turning away from religion. After returning to Mexico following a formation meeting in Italy, the priest became interested in this platform.  “In those days was that I downloaded the application, because I saw some stories on social networks and from there I started to make TikToks. I did not know how but little by little I was learning,” said the TikToker.

At 48 years old, the priest pointed out that when he noticed that one of his videos went viral and went from 60 followers to 10,000 followers in a very short time, he understood the power of social media.

Ezequiel feels that religion is not at odds with daily life and he uses TikTok to share that message.

Father Cheke does it all for TikTok. He dances, sings and interprets his videos with a lot of ease. He also lip synchs to dubbed videos, follows trendy choreography and viral songs, sometimes alone and sometimes with members of his congregation.

I mean who wouldn’t love a padre doing TikTok?!

Due to the great impact of social media, he has become a viral character and even has his own hashtag,#ChekeTokers, which has already been and will probably continue to trend throughout Mexico and, if he has his way, around the world.

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This Virgen de Guadalupe Mural Was Vandalized In Los Angeles And The Community Is Devastated

Things That Matter

This Virgen de Guadalupe Mural Was Vandalized In Los Angeles And The Community Is Devastated

La Virgen de Guadalupe means so much to so many. Especially the Latino community in Van Nuys, California, near Los Angeles, which is reeling after an important mural depicting La Virgen was vandalized overnight.

Although security cam footage captured an unknown man defacing the mural, the suspect is still at large and the community is asking for help in finding out who committed the vandalism.

A suspect was caught on camera destroying a mural with La Virgen de Guadalupe.

The community of Saint Elisabeth Church near Los Angeles is asking the community for prayers after a mural of Our Lady of Guadalupe was vandalized on church grounds. 

The parish’s security system recorded video footage of an unknown man dressed in black approaching the mural with a sledgehammer at 1:40 a.m. Wednesday morning. He can be seen smashing the tiles that make up Our Lady’s face several times before fleeing.

On Friday, April 23, Father Di Marzio led a prayer service, which was livestreamed on the parish Facebook page. Some 30 parishioners gathered to sing and pray a decade of the rosary in front of the mural, which is roped off with caution tape, while nearly 100 others joined online. In closing, Fr. Di Marzio encouraged parishioners to “continue to pray to the Blessed Virgin Mary to help us, and to touch the heart of the person who did this.” 

Also on Friday, a local artist, Geo Rhodes, was scheduled to visit the mural and discuss a plan for repair, arranged by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. “We hope that soon we will restore the image, or have a new one more beautiful than the one we had before,” Fr. Di Marzio said.  

La Virgen de Guadalupe is extremely important to the church.

The hand-painted tile mural stands between the church and the rectory. It was installed over 35 years ago as a “symbol of community unity,” said business manager Irma Ochoa. Each square tile was sponsored by a parish family. Overlooking a small altar, the mural has become a popular place for parishioners to pray and light candles, asking Our Lady for special blessings. 

“I feel an unspeakable sadness,” said Fr. Antonio Fiorenza, who is in residence at the parish. “But I feel pity for the one who made this sacrilegious gesture. I pray for his conversion and for all those who show contempt to the Virgin Mary.”

To donate to the restoration fund, visit stelisabethchurch.org

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