Annual Mass to honor Our Lady

Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - Updated: 12:22 pm

The annual Mass for the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe will be celebrated by Bishop David Zubik on Wednesday, Dec. 12, at St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh’s Oakland neighborhood.

All are welcome to the celebration, sponsored by the diocesan Latino Catholic Apostolate, which includes the parishes of St. Regis, Oakland; St. Paul, Butler; St. Catherine of Siena, Beechview; Our Lady of Joy, Plum; Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, Meadow Lands; and SS. John and Paul, Franklin Park/Marshall Township. Following Mass, everyone is invited to a reception in the cathedral social hall.

Ceremonies will begin with Eucharistic adoration at 5:30 p.m., rosary at 6 p.m. and Benediction at 6:30. Confession will be available from 5:30 p.m. until shortly before Mass. Mass begins at 7 p.m. The Gospel and readings for the Mass will be in Spanish and English. Father Carmen D’Amico will give the homily.

Bishop Zubik will present roses to Our Lady, represented by a replica of the painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe that hangs in Mexico’s Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The painting will be carried in procession, with a color guard of banners from the six participating parishes and the flags of many nations, as the congregation sings the traditional Las Mañanitas.

“The idea is to celebrate Our Lady as Empress of the Americas,” said Jorge Vela, director of the Latino Catholic Apostolate, “because she is the mother of all of us, and for this reason, we are welcoming all the communities that live here in Pittsburgh.”

The prayers of the faithful will include petitions in eight languages: Italian, Portuguese, German, Polish, French and Tagalog, in addition to Spanish and English.

“Because the Virgin Mary leads others to her Son,” Vela said, “we want everyone to have a deeper relationship with the Blessed Mother.”

The celebration marks the 12th consecutive year that the cathedral has hosted the feast day liturgy. Concelebrating with Bishop Zubik will be Auxiliary Bishop William Waltersheid, Father Fernando Torres, Father D’Amico and Father Jay Donahue.

The olive-skinned Virgin of Guadalupe is Mexico’s most popular religious image. Devotees believe that she can cure almost any sickness. The feast commemorates the appearance of Mary to a Mexican peasant, St. Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin, in 1531.

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