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Legend of the Virgin of Guadalupe estremeña,English.29.8.22

Legend of the Virgin of Guadalupe estremeña



dates back to the 1st century of Christianity, they say that the authorship of the carving would correspond to Saint Luke and that when the evangelist died in Boeotia (present-day Greece), the image would be buried with him and his fate would follow.


In the middle of the IV century, both the body of the evangelist and the image were transferred to Byzantium (Constantinople), from there the image was taken to Rome in 582. At that time a terrible plague was unleashed in the city that ended life of many people and among them that of Pope Pelagius II. Being subsequently elected Pope, Saint Gregory the Great had litanies made and the image he had in his personal oratory processed, which was none other than Our Lady of Guadalupe. While in procession a heavenly song was heard similar to that of angels singing praises to the Holy Virgin in the air saying


Rejoice, Queen of Heaven, rejoice. Here the one that you deserved to conceive and give birth is already resurrected according to what he said.


Right afterwards he appeared above what is now known as Castel Sant’Angelo, an angel cleaning the blood from a sword. After all this the pestilence ceased in the city and Saint Gregory became a faithful devotee of the image.


A few years later, San Gregorio sent several relics to the Archbishop of Seville, San Leandro in gratitude for having taken care to destroy the heresy of Los Arrianos. Among those relics was the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe. As the image went on a ship from Rome to Seville, a terrible storm was unleashed that endangered the ship and its occupants, then one of the clergymen, moved by faith and devotion, took out the image of the Virgin on deck and pleaded with her. so much humility and devotion that the storm ceased that the storm automatically subsided. Knowing San Leandro the present sent by the Pope went to the port to receive the image and with great veneration it was transferred to his rooms. She was later enthroned in the main church of Seville and venerated with great fervor by all the people.


But the Arab invasion, in the year 711, made some Sevillian clerics had to flee the city towards the north of the peninsula, taking with them the relics that they could transport, among which was the aforementioned image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Deep in Extremadura and to avoid its desecration, they buried such relics in a mountainous area near a river known as Guadalupe.


Already in the middle of the fourteenth century and almost finished the Christian reconquest when Alfonso XI reigned in Castilla, the cowboy from Cáceres, Gil Cordero, was walking in the company of other shepherds keeping his cattle in a pasture called Guadalupe, near the river of the same name. At one point Gil Cordero realizes that he had lost a cow and immediately went out to look for it, after a while he discovered the animal’s corpse next to the banks of the Guadalupe River, disconsolate, he decided to take advantage of its skin and when he took out the knife to skin the animal, he returned to life before the astonished gaze of the cowboy. At that moment the figure of a woman wrapped in light who identified herself as the Virgin made an appearance exclaiming


Do not worry. I am the Mother of God, Savior of the human lineage. Take your cow and bring it to the herd with the others and then go to your land. You will tell the clergy what you have seen. Tell them also for me that I am sending you there. Let them come to this place where you are now. Let them dig where the dead cow was, under these stones: they will find an image of me. When they take her out, tell them not to move her or take her away from this place where she is now, but to make a box where they put her. Time will come that in this place a very remarkable church and house will be built and the town will be great.


Obeying divine designs, Gil Cordero went to Cáceres and reported what had happened to both civil and religious authorities, but no one believed him.


He came home disturbed by everything that had happened to him and found his wife in the company of some clergymen and neighbors crying inconsolably, her son had died and he was present. Looking at the cowboy fixedly at his first-born, he remembered how the Virgin had raised the cow and without thinking too much about it, he knelt on the ground entrusting himself to Our Lady and with great devotion he begged:


Madam, You know the embassy that I bring from You and I believe it is very true that this is ordered by You, that I find this my son dead, because You, showing yourself wonderful in resuscitating him, may be more slightly believed of those because I am here because of Your command to come. Well, that’s the way it is, Lady, I beg You to want to resurrect it and from here I offer it to You for Your perpetual servant and to take it to that holy place, where You had the good of appearing to me.


Before the astonished gaze of all those present, the young man got up, like someone waking up from a dream, everyone was amazed at such a great miracle, then the cowboy said to those present:



Sirs, friends, know that to give faith to the message that I bring you, it was necessary that Our Lady had the good of working this great wonder, since because of our sins we often doubt those things that we do not see bodily.



And having said that, he told them what had happened to him next to the Guadalupe River. That prodigy was so popular that he reached the ears of all those who did not believe him in his previous proclamation. And both priests and residents of Cáceres accompanied him to the place where Our Lady appeared to him. They dug where Gil Cordero found the dead animal, and as predicted, not too deep, they found a small marble tomb with a figure of the Virgin, accompanied by other relics and some documents that told the story of the image from its creation by San Lucas until his later burial by Sevillian clerics in this place. They took out the image of the Virgin along with the other relics and made a humble stone hut and in its interior, gathering some stones, they created a kind of altar placing the image of the Virgin on it and leaving Gil Cordero and his family as guardians of the hermitage




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