Guadalupe, Protector of the Foreigner

This Sunday at St. John's we celebrate not only the Third Sunday of Advent, but also the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. We think it's especially fitting at this time in our nation to think of the appearance of Our Lady to a poor native Mexican peasant, Juan Diego. She greets him as another would greet her dear son, and she acknowledges that he is the most humble of all her children. He's the one chosen to bring her message to the powerful Spanish bishop.

Maybe Our Lady's message is a prophetic word in our day and our nation since the powerful seem to neglect the powerless. The immigrants are turned away at our border and families are separated. The rifts that separate us based on race or religion or politics are vast. So maybe Our Lady calls all of us to remember we are all children of God and especially in Christ we are her children as well.

This weekend may we pray that Mary the mother of the dispossessed, the protector of foreigners and the poor may give us eyes to see those who are of little account in our society and realize that they are our sisters and brothers too. And may we all pray, as we will in our final hymn on Sunday, to help each other find our way home together to our homeland in the Kingdom of God, guided by our Mother, and the mother of Jesus: "You are the star of the ocean, my boat is small and the waves are so high; but with you to guide me, I'll reach my homeland, Maria o most merciful mother."

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