Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, commemorating the apparitions of the Virgin Mary at Guadalupe, near Mexico City, after the European conquest of the Aztecs. Mary, looking like a Mexican princess, appeared four times to a peasant named Juan Diego. She left her image on a cloak that is preserved in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Under this title, Mary was named Patroness of New Spain (1710) and Latin America (1910), Queen of Mexico, Empress of the Americas (1945), and Patroness of the Americas (1999).
The image seen here hangs in the Guadalupe Room on the Emmitsburg Campus.
Among the wonderful art works in our collections, the Provincial Archives boasts a painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe presented by Mr. O’Conway of Philadelphia paid $200 for it in 1811 and presented it to Elizabeth Ann Seton. The donor, Mathias O’Conway, was the father of Cecilia O’Conway, first American Sister of Charity with Mother Seton. Another O’Conway daughter, Isabella, was a pupil at Mrs. Seton’s school on Paca Street, Baltimore.
For more on the Virgin of Guadalupe see our December 12, 2013 blog post.