Well, the 'best laid plans of mice and men....' Yesterday we decided we had enough of Mexico´s pre-colombian history so we went off to see some of the colonial history. What I had forgotten was that museums are generally closed on Mondays here. One place we had not gone was to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. That is always open!
I had been there back in the early 70´s. The new basilica was open then but it reminded me of a Mexican bus station. The "new" basilica was built sometime in the 1960s because the baroque chapel was too small and was sinking into the ever-present underground lake upon which most of Mexico City is grounded. But yesterday the "new" basilica had been well-appointed over the past 40 years and one papal visit later.
J and I wandered all over the whole complex and saw very few (maybe one?) European faces. While standing in the back of the basilica (Mass was being celebrated) we saw a woman cleaning with a dust mop. The basilica is always open, therefore cleaning goes on all of the time too. I asked her quietly how we could get closer to the image of the Virgin because it was above the altar. She told me: one can go under the back of the altar on a moving sidewalk). We stayed for a few moments longer as the consecration of the mass was happening and two priests are loath to move around in church at that time.
The woman returned with her mop and said to me: "I have a gift for you." I was surprised. she
Later I realized that this may have been one of the Guadalupanas, nuns whose main vocation is to
And while I do not have a devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, I now carry a small picture of her in