Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Sacramento’s Southside Park held a procession Thursday in honor of its namesake, the Virgin of Guadalupe.
Above, Angelbertha Cobb of Sacramento dances during the procession. “I’m not sure if I’ll be able to dance for her again next year,” Cobb said as she stood near a fire to keep warm.
Many of the faithful spent the night at the church Thursday.
Catholics believe that on Dec. 12, 1531, a laborer named Juan Diego saw an apparition of the Virgin Mary on the hill of Tepeyac in Mexico City, and she asked in his native Nahuatl that a church be built at the site in her honor. When Juan Diego relayed the message to the bishop of Mexico City, the bishop asked for a sign to prove her identity.
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Catholics believe the virgin appeared to Juan Diego again and she provided him with Castilian roses, which were not grown in Mexico, to take to the bishop. When Juan Diego dropped the roses before the bishop, an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe remained on his garment.
For many years, believers have attended Mass at the church site in Mexico, which is now the National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe.