The faithful renew the “pact of fidelity” before the Lord and the Virgin of the Miracle. The people gathered in Valle de Bravo on Saturday, November 18th for a Mass presided over by Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez. Approximately 5,000 people attended the Mass celebrated in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
In his homily the prelate spoke about the gift that is fidelity and he reminded those who have been baptized in Christ that they must renew this pact: “Who do we make a promise to? We make a promise to God and also to the Virgin of Guadalupe, who is the mother of fidelity. It is not easy to be faithful; it often takes courage, but we know that God will always be with us and support us in the struggles of life,” he said.
The prelate also encouraged those present to pray for Pope Francis: “This year, all Christians are called to pray for the Pope and the Church. We should not only pray for our shepherds, but also ask God to give them strength so that they have the health and time necessary to fulfill their mission.”
The celebration culminated with a procession from the parish church of San Miguel Arcángel to the Temple of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
At the end of the Mass, as a sign of his affection, the Cardinal handed Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto one of the roses from the altar. In an interview with Vatican Radio after the event, Sandoval Íñiguez recalled that he had bestowed a rose on all those who have distinguished themselves by their fidelity to God and to the Church, including members of the clergy.
In addition to his role as Archbishop of Guadalajara, Cardinal Sandoval Íñiguez is also President of the Mexican Episcopal Conference. In this capacity, he recently expressed his unconditional support for Mexico’s bishops who have been harshly attacked by civil society organizations and by their critics.
The Cardinal said that he was moved by the “great pain” of his brother bishops who are, according to him, having to face “attacks and tremendous pressure on them.” He expressed this support very clearly during an interview with the news agency Notimex. “I admire our bishops, who are constantly under attack. They are very tired because of this pressure,” the Cardinal said.
He also emphasized that he is convinced that “this will pass.” Meanwhile, “we keep walking and maintaining our Christian spirit to share with everyone the good news of Jesus Christ,” he added. The attacks on his brother bishops began with the publication of an informal letter by twelve priests who criticized their brother bishops.