Guadalupe in the Winter Hood

This column ran on UPI’s Religion and Spirituality Forum on December 10, 2007.

In the late-afternoon sun, it’s just warm enough to enjoy a cup of tea on the back patio of my condominium in East San Jose. There are egrets fishing in the urban creek that runs behind my home. One last tomato is trying to turn red in what remains of my garden. The air is clear. The Christmas lights have been hung, and the tree will go up tonight. There is a quiet lull and this is a winter wonderland of sorts. Here there are no sleigh bells ringing—the nearest snow is hundreds of miles away on the Sierra Nevada—but the beauty of winter has many faces and this is one of them.

In a few days’ time this quiet will be replaced by the joyful noise of pilgrims from all over Northern California, who will celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe at the Roman Catholic church across the street; the church is named in honor of Mexico’s patron saint Continue reading