They were clearly pilgrims heading to Tepeyac, here in Mexico city, the place where Our Lady appeared hundreds of years ago and where Her image is still.
They were carrying only woollen blankets and an image of Our Lady. Walking dozens, in some cases hundreds of miles to sing to Her and celebrate Her on Her birthday. Traffic stopped to let them pass through and I am sure they will spend the night out in the cold near the Basilica waiting to sing to Her Happy Birthday. Such faith that you cannot be but moved by it.
This is part of everyday Mexico and despite all the challenges we face as a country, we are very blessed to have Her here, so near and also that so many millions of persons still have such a devotion to Her. Nowhere in the world I have seen this.
A few hours ago the fireworks started and they will go on for the next day. You cannot forget whose birthday it tomorrow.
Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims are walking through the city streets tonight in freezing cold, sleeping where they can and this family was just one example. Some say in a couple of days over 2 millon persons will visit Her and that Tepeyac is the largest Marian site in the world, only competing with Lourdes and Fatima and the most visited Catholic one after St Peter.
I can only say its a very, very blessed place where one cannot be, but moved by the faith of the people visiting and Her.
Today in the early morning thousands of people will sing the "Mañanitas (our traditional birthday song) Here is a link to it and its very impressive if you have never seen it. Mañananitas
Today and tomorrow very specially I offer my prayers in Her land to all of you that are suffering, mourning, waiting or have a heavy heart.
Like a true Mother She has consoled me time and time again and my prayer tonight is that She also consoles you.
Please remember these words that She said to San Juan Diego and that She tells all of us:
“Hear me and understand well, my son the least, that nothing should frighten or grieve you. Let not your heart be disturbed. Do not fear that sickness, nor any other sickness or anguish. Am I not here, who is your Mother? Are you not under my protection? Am I not your health? Are you not happily within my fold? What else do you wish? Do not grieve nor be disturbed by anything"
¡Señora de Guadalupe, ruega por nosotros!
¡San Juan Diego, ruego por nosotros!