Frank Ronay

The Message of Virgen de Guadalupe

The message of Our Lady of Guadalupe has its origin in a prodigious image that became the fundamental basis of the earthly and heavenly bond. It all started when Juan Diego, a poor indigenous man, was walking through the Tepeyac hill on his way to mass and suddenly he saw the appearance of the Virgin. The Virgin of Guadalupe appears to him and from her radiance asks Juan Diego to intercede for her before the Archbishop of Mexico. The Virgin tells him that she would like a sanctuary dedicated in her honor. Between December 9 and 12, 1531, these encounters were miraculous and before Archbishop Juan de Zumárraga, Juan Diego unfurled his tilma carrying the flowers as a gift from the Virgin and the splendorous image of Our Lady appeared before his eyes.

As a symbol of purity and perfection, the Virgin of Guadalupe shows the syncretism and integration of the different social strata in America; the Creole and the indigenous coexist in a religious miscegenation. Tonatzin, Guadalupe, our grandmother, our mother.

The construction of a simple chapel is likely to have happened the same year as the apparitions, that is, in 1531. Over the years, different constructions dedicated to the cult of the Virgin were made, including the so-called Artesonada in 1556, built by the architect Alonso Arias in 1622, La Colegiata (the old basilica) finished in 1709 in baroque style, culminating in the impressive new basilica (1974-76).

The image of the Virgin of Guadalupe, perched on the moon, is surrounded by a resplendent halo. As queen of heaven she wears a crown of 12 radiant stars on her head, illuminating Mexico and the World.

The Virgin's crown acquires importance thanks to the papal bull that Pope Leo XIII promulgated in 1895, where he granted permission for her canonical coronation, reiterating her position as Queen of the Americas. There are several crowns donated to the Virgin, including the one that the historian and collector Lorenzo Boturini bestows in the 17th century.

In 1945, in commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of this important event, the jeweler Frank Ronay was commissioned to create a crown worthy of the Virgin of Guadalupe.

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