Friday, December 09, 2005

Feast of San Juan Diego

Today is another special feast, the feast of Saint Juan Diego.

Sister Anne has a very powerful reflection on San Juan Diego on her blog.

The humble and simple Indian peasant of centuries ago is no bystander in faith's history in the Americas. He is, in our estimation today, the most unlikely of messengers but God doesn't follow our rules. He selected Juan Diego from among the entire population at that time to carry the message Our Lady brought. Who could have known? And as Sister Anne asks, how would we respond to such a messenger?

How do we respond to such messengers today? They are around and among us, living quiet existences that communicate God's message to us, that communicate God's love for all people.

It's no coincidence or random occurrence that the Feast of Saint Juan Diego ("Saint Juan of Mexico" as I have also heard him referenced) is caringly placed between the Feast of the Immaculate Conception and the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. He is intrinsic to the story of God and the Americas and, in a way I had not thought of until today, Juan Diego brings full circle the tragic history of the colonizers and missionaries and slaughters of the native peoples of this continent. Called from among the native peasants of the region, his selection by God challenges us to place in right perspective our attitudes toward the natives' expressions of faith in the Creator of the universe.

Our understanding of the interrelationship among Mary, God, and us as revealed through the Immaculate Conception, patroness of the United States, and Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americas depends on Juan Diego. Yet until the time of his canonization, many of us probably knew (and thought) very little of him. Yet without his YES, there is no story of Our Lady of Guadalupe, who also revealed herself as "the Immaculate." Without Mary's YES, salvation history also would have been changed -- in other words, it could not have happened as it was ordained to be.

On this first day of the sacred triduum between the Immaculate Conception and Our Lady of Guadalupe, let us focus our attention on Juan Diego. Let us look closely at what he teaches us. Let us look inward and see what our hearts hold. Let us listen to God speaking through Juan Diego with open hearts and attentive gazes.

Saint Juan Diego, pray for us, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ and His Blessed Mother Mary.

Saint Juan Diego, pray for us that we may be able to say YES to our call to be a part of salvation history.

Saint Juan Diego, pray for us that we may be able with eyes and hearts of faith to see God in all things, great and small.

Saint Juan Diego, pray for us!

San Juan Diego, ruega por nosotros que nos hagamos dignos de las promesas del Senor Jesus y su Santisima Madre Maria.

San Juan Diego, ruega por nosotros que podamos decir SI a la llamada de Dios a ser parte de la historia salvifica.

San Juan Diego, ruega por nosotros que seamos capaces a ver a Dios en todo con ojos y corazones de fe.

San Juan Diego, ruega por nosotros!


At 7:36 PM , Blogger AveMaria1 said...

Lisa ~ How are you these days, I was just stopping by and really enjoyed the Juan Diego post. Peace, Lauren

At 10:37 PM , Blogger Lisa said...

I am glad you enjoyed the reflection. I have had a great devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe for much of my life. For a number of reasons I came to the conclusion that it was right to also "claim" Juan Diego. By that I mean, recognize what a significant role he played (and still plays through his intercession) in communicating the message heaven sent at Tepeyac.
He reminds us over and over again that the littlest and simplest are often the selected messengers of God.


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