Residents of San Pedro Town paid homage to the virgin of Our Lady of Guadalupe at a special event held at the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church on Wednesday December 11th. The celebration was held on the eve of the day that is set aside by the Roman Catholic Church to commemorate the date that Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared before Saint Juan Diego at the hill of Tepeyac, Mexico in 1531. On Ambergris Caye, the event was filled with many presentations include several serenades by local musicians and residents.

The event started at 5:00PM on Wednesday and ran until the wee hours of Thursday, December 12th. The church had a constant flow of people as hundreds of churchgoers took time to visit with the statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe, bring beautiful floral arrangements and lit candles. People of all ages paused to pray to the virgin, asking for her mercy and protection.

As part of the activities, several people participated in the official program which was filled with poetry, musical and dance presentations and even are-enactment of the appearance of Our Lady of Guadalupe to San Juan Diego. Marthita Leslie and Angel Nuñez were the first to start with their poems in dedication to the Saint, also referred to as the Virgin of Tepeyac. Talented Noel Wilshire and upcoming organist Diego Francois made their presentations in front of a packed church. Other notable singers include Wally Nuñez Sr., Oscar Aguilar, Yoli Aguilar, David Aguilar, Nelsin Rivero, Javier Castillo and even Miss San Pedro Solani Graniel. The electrifying voice of Elina Palma, Natalie Arceo and the San Pedro Roman Catholic Youth Group Choir also captivated the audience.

At the closing of the church event shortly after 11PM, everyone joined their voices in singing “Las Mañanitas” to Our Lady of Guadalupe. And while the voices serenading could be heard from a distance, so were the blasts from the fire crackers on the street that were set off as part of the festivities. At midnight, people gathered outside to join local mariachi Javier Castillo – backed by Super Latino Band, in a serenade to mark the 12th of December, the official day of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Those that attended the event also had the opportunity to enjoy the variety food and pastries that were on sale. The event was organized by the San Pedro Roman Catholic Women’s Legion with the support of the San Pedro Cultural Committee.

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About the Author: Tamara Sniffin

I’m a sucker for a fuzzy face, a feathered face, a face with fins or even one with scales! I am in love with the creatures and the flora that are synonymous with Belize and every opportunity I have to learn more about them and explore their wild habitats I am there! I’m the happiest when I’m snorkeling the reef and swimming with turtles, however my passion is not just limited to critters! Laced throughout this compact jungle gem of a country live the Kriol, Maya, Garifuna, Mestizo and Spanish people, and experiencing each culture, especially their celebrations is one of my favorite pastimes.

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