Aleteia

What Pope Francis Really Said About Our Lady of Guadalupe

Sacred Heart Cathedral Knoxville
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A false story sweeps the social networks, but the Pope did not say Our Lady was a fable.

A story claiming that  Pope Francis said that the Virgin of Guadalupe does not exist and is only a fable invented by Mexicans is sweeping through the social networks.

The story, published on different forums and websites, could be described as a heap of nonsense. For example, the news says that the Pope visited Spain (When?) and claims the statements were made in a Mass at the main cathedral in the country, called "the Sacred Heart." (Where?) Another glaring fault is the talk of an alleged canonization of the Virgin of Guadalupe. (Since when is Our Lady canonized?)

No one has to worry. Pope Francis did not make these statements and everything seems to be a deliberate invention. So that all our Mexican friends can be more at ease, we are reprinting some of Pope Francis’ actual statements, which he gave on the eve of the Feast of Guadalupe. Here we see his true affection for the Patroness of the Americas.

Message from Pope Francis

Tomorrow is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas. On this occasion, I wish to greet the brothers and sisters of this continent, and I do so thinking of the Virgin of Tepeyac.

When she appeared to St. Juan Diego, her face was that of a mestiza (mixed race) woman and her clothes were full of symbols of the indigenous culture. Following the example of Jesus, Mary is close to her children. She accompanies them on their way as a solicitious mother, and shares the joys and hopes, sufferings and anxieties of the people of God, who are called to form part of all the peoples of the earth.

The appearance of the image of the Virgin on the tilma of Juan Diego was a prophetic sign of an embrace, Mary’s embrace, of all the inhabitants of the vast American lands, both those who were already there and those who came after.

This embrace of Mary pointed the way that has always characterized America: a land where different people can live together, a land capable of respecting human life at all stages, from birth to old age, able to welcome immigrants as well as the people and the poor and marginalized of all ages. America is a generous land.

This is the message of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and this is my message, the message of the Church. I encourage all inhabitants of the American continent to have open arms like the Virgin Mary, with love and tenderness.

I pray for all of you, dear brothers and sisters across America, and please pray for me, too. May the joy of the Gospel be always in your hearts. May the Lord bless you and the Virgin be with you.

Alvaro Realwrites for the Spanish edition of Aleteia.This article was translated from the Spanish by Trish Bailey Arceo.