Image: Mexico’s Guadalupe pilgrimage attracts millions of devotees | Religion

Millions of Catholic pilgrims gathered at a basilica in Mexico City to mark the annual feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe, with crowds camping overnight on Sunday after walking days to reach the site. temple in an act of centuries-old devotion.

The festival features two lavish extravaganzas capped by a midnight mass due to of Mexico senior archbishop. Many pilgrims to the historic basilica kneel in prayer or carry a statue of Our Lady.

The busy streets around the basilica are filled with vendors selling souvenirs, including rosaries, and even tattoo artists painting religious art, with others handing out food and drinks Free for weary walkers in the final stretch.

Maximillia, 44, who did not give a second name, walked for two days with 22 family members, taking turns pushing the young grandchild in the stroller.

“It is a wonderful feeling. We came to give thanks,” she said. “Our faith drives us.”

Two teenage cousins ​​holding hands for a walk said their school let them close on Monday because of an extended national holiday.

An estimated 3.1 million pilgrims have come to the basilica in recent days, Mexico City government officials said on Sunday, and more are expected on Monday.

The Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe is the second most visited Catholic shrine in the world, after Saint Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Italy.

It was built next to a hill north of Mexico City, where Catholics believe that Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ, appeared to an Aztec man in 1531, an event believed to have happened. initiated the Mexican campaign. Catholic convert.

The Pandemic caused by covid-19 saw the basilica close for the first time in 500 years in 2020. Last year, attendance in the first half of December rose to at least 3.5 million, according to officials, with the This year’s pilgrimage is expected to hit a new record.


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