Our Lady of Guadalupe, in the city of Guadalupe, Spain, is some 120 miles west south west of Madrid, and is also about 300 miles south of Garabandal and about 300 miles east of Fatima (Portugal).
The history of the statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe goes back to a Pope Gregory the Great. In the year 590, he gave to Bishop Leander of Seville, Spain, the richly decorated statue made of dark wood, called black virgin, now known as ‘Our Lady of Guadalupe.’
This pope is extremely important and so very interesting. ‘Delaney’s Dictionary of Saints’ records:
“GREGORY I THE GREAT (540-604). Son of a wealthy patrician, Gordianus, he was born and educated at Rome. He was prefect of Rome when the Lombard invasion of Italy was threatening Rome in 571. Long attracted to the religious life, about 574 he converted his home in Rome into St. Andrew’s Monastery under Valentius, became a monk there, and founded six monasteries on his estates in Sicily. After several years of seclusion at St. Andrew’s, he was ordained by Pope Pelagius II and was made one of the seven papal deacons in 578. He served as papal nuncio to the Byzantine court, 579-85, was recalled in 586, resumed his monastic life, and became abbot of St. Andrew’s. He set out to evangelize England but was brought back to Rome by Pope Pelagius when plague struck Rome, 589-90. Pelagius was stricken and died, and Gregory was elected Pope and consecrated on September 3, 590.
He restored ecclesiastical discipline, removed unworthy clerics from office, abolished clerical fees for burials and ordinations, and was prodigious in his charities. He administered papal properties wisely and justly, ransomed captives from the Lombards, protected Jews from unjust coercion, and fed the victims of a famine. In 593, he persuaded the invading Lombards under Agilulf to spare Rome, and he negotiated a peace with the Lombard King—an unprecedented move that effectively set aside the authority of the Byzantine Emperor’s representative, the exarch. This was the beginning of a series of actions by which Gregory resisted the arrogance, incompetence, and treachery of Byzantine authorities by which he appointed governors of the Italian cities, providing them with war materials and denouncing the heavy taxes levied on the Italians by Byzantine officials. He thus started on its course the acquisition and exercise of temporal power by the papacy. He was responsible for the conversion of England to Christianity by his interest in that country and his dispatch of St. Augustine of Canterbury and forty monks from St. Andrew’s there (though the story in Bede’s history of the English Church that he was motivated to do so by the sight of a group of blond, handsome Saxon slaves up for sale in the marketplace may be apocryphal). He was untiring in his efforts to ensure that the papacy was the supreme authority in the Church, and denouncing John, Patriarch of Constantinople, for his use of the title Ecumenical Patriarch (he himself preferred as his own title “Servant of the Servants of God,” a title used by Popes to this day, fourteen centuries later). He was an eloquent preacher and was mainly responsible for the restoration of a Rome devastated by the invasions, pillages, and earthquakes of the century before his pontificate. He wrote treatises, notably his Dialogues, a collection of visions, prophecies, miracles, and lives of Italian saints, and Liber regulae past oralis (on the duties of bishops), and hundreds of sermons and letters. Whether he was the compiler of the Antiphony on which the Roman schola cantorum was based and several hymns attributed to him is uncertain, but he did greatly influence the Roman liturgy. The custom of saying thirty successive Masses for a dead person goes back to him and bears his name, and to Gregory is due Gregorian Chant. He actively encouraged Benedictine monasticism, and his grants of privileges to monks often restricting episcopal jurisdictions was the beginning of later exemptions that were to bring religious orders directly under papal control.
He is the last of the traditional Latin Doctors of the Church, is justly called “the Great,” and is considered the founder of the medieval papacy. He died in Rome on March 12 and was canonized by acclamation immediately after his death. September 3.”
It is noteworthy how he combated the temporal powers of his day, provided for true evangelism without compromise with ecumenism. I summarize some of the highlights from above:
1. He restored ecclesiastical discipline.
2. Removed unworthy clerics from office.
3. Abolished the commercialism of clerical fees.
4. Ransomed captives from the Lombards.
5. Protected Jews from unjust coercion.
5. Fed the victims of famine.
6. Set aside the authority of the lay governments over the Church of Jesus Christ.
7. Resisted the arrogance, incompetence, and treachery of secular politicians.
8. Appointed governors of the Italian cities, providing them with war materials.
9. Denounced the heavy taxes levied on the Italians by secular officials.
10. Established the acquisition and exercise of temporal power by the Papacy.
11. Converted England to Christianity.
12. Ensured that the Papacy was the supreme authority in the Church.
13. He wrote treatises, notably his Dialogues, a collection of visions, prophecies, miracles.
14. He greatly influenced the Roman liturgy.
15. Brought religious orders directly under Papal control.
16. He also died on a notable day (my birthday!).
The prophetic gift by Gregory the Great in 590 was to have far reaching effects in the time of history. Our Lady of Guadalupe was buried from 711 until 1326. In 1491 it appears that Christopher (one who carries Christ) Columbus received the Sacraments of Confessions and Holy Eucharist at the Cathedral of the Virgin’s Statue in Guadalupe before going to America. Undoubtedly the holy image was responsible for him changing the names of his fleet to Santa Maria, Pinta, Niña, which when joined in a sentence, Holy Mary paints Girl, was the prophesy of the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico.
There is more to the Italian Christopher Columbus and his finding the ‘new world’ on Spanish ships. I will deal with Columbus a little later, but first let us take a look at ‘the new world.’ His heroic efforts inspired an Irish priest to form the great society of ‘The Knights of Columbus.’ It was through the great discovery by Columbus that so many Catholics came to America. What we now consider the Western States of the USA, it was in the1700s part of Mexico and became Roman Catholic after the arrival of the Spanish Missionaries. The Mexicans named their cities and rivers, and mountains after the names of Jesus, Holy Eucharist and saints: Corpus Christi, Santa Maria, Santa Fe, San Diego, San Francisco, etc.
On the east coast of the USA there were four main groups of ‘invaders.’
1. The French who came via the Great Lakes and ventured down the middle of the country, naming the big river ‘The Immaculate Conception.’
2. The north east saw the arrival of the Puritan Pilgrims, and this group were fiercely anti-Catholic. They called their territory ‘New England.’
3. To the center states came the Protestant Anglicans, and these also were anti-Catholic. This group went on to conquer the south. They settled an area which they named after the English monarchy York, ‘New York.’
4. Arriving at the area south of New York were the Catholic pilgrims in an area they called ‘Mary Land.’ The site of their landing they called Saint Mary’s. North of there they founded a settlement which they called ‘Rosary.’ East of Mary Land they founded an area which they called ‘The Virgin.’ Like the Mexicans, they called their settlements by the names of saints, like St. Augustine, St. Charles, St. James, St. Martin, St. Michael, St. Paul and many more. Also they gave place names such as Bethlehem, Hebron, Salem, etc. If the names given by the Catholic pilgrims had not been changed by the anti-Catholic forces, the states of Virginia and Maryland would have been called by the combined names of ‘The Virgin Mary Land.’
All of these points have an interconnected and tangible meaning and focus. Pope Gregory the Great was a powerful Pope in the line of Petrus Romanus, and a powerful Monarch in the authority of Christ the King. He established the lineage and the supremacy of the Papacy over all matters spiritual and civil. He re-established what had been abandoned from the command by Jesus Christ: “Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in Heaven” (Mt 16:18,19). Jesus gave to His Monarch Peter, full authority by saying ‘whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in Heaven’. There can be no question about the God given spiritual and temporal authority to His Vicar. So the names of the cities and lands which God gave to His servants, who were inspired to call by the names of Heaven, yet sinful man choose to call those places by unholy names: “That which God has cleansed, do not thou call common” (Acts 10:15). If Saint Malachy in his Prophecies were to take an example of a ‘perfect Petrus Romanus’ he would have chosen Pope Gregory the Great.
Returning briefly to Christopher Columbus, it is noteworthy that The Catholic Knights of Columbus were named after him. According to Encyclopedia Britannica: “the Knights of Columbus international fraternal benefit society of Roman Catholic men, founded by the Reverend Michael J. McGivney and chartered by the state of Connecticut in the United States in 1882.”
In an extract taken from the website: http://www.parishpriest.org/prpt/en/more_home/index.html
we read: “In Father Michael McGivney (1852-1890), born and raised in a Connecticut factory town, the modern era’s ideal of the priesthood hit its zenith. The son of Irish immigrants, he was a man to whom “family values” represented more than mere rhetoric. And he left a legacy of hope still celebrated around the world. He founded the Knights of Columbus, an organization that has helped to save countless families from the indignity of destitution. In the late 1800s, discrimination against American Catholics was widespread. Many Catholics struggled to find work and ended up in inferno-like mills. An injury or death of the wage earner would leave the family penniless. The grim threat of chronic homelessness and even starvation could fast become realities. Catholics were regularly excluded from labor unions and other organizations that provided social services. In addition, Catholics were barred from many of the popular fraternal organizations, or, as in the case of Freemasonry, forbidden from joining by policy of the Catholic Church. McGivney wished to provide them an alternative. He also believed that Catholicism and fraternalism were not incompatible and wanted to found a society to encourage men to be proud of their American-Catholic heritage.
Wikipedia says: “The name of Columbus was also partially intended as a mild rebuke to Anglo-Saxon Protestant leaders, who upheld the explorer (a Catholic Genovese Italian working for Catholic Spain) as an American hero, yet simultaneously sought to marginalize recent Catholic immigrants. In taking Columbus as their patron, they were expressing their belief that not only could Catholics be full members of American society, but were instrumental in its foundation.”
Pope Gregory the Great is the proto-type and photo-type of Petrus Romanus and the Great Monarch. When we look at the retaking of the pagan territories as prophesied by the acts of Pope Gregory, fulfilled by Christopher Columbus, and inspired, encouraged, and demonstrated by Our Lady, the Virgin of Guadalupe, we will see that this act is not just the ‘new world of the Americas’, but the restoration of all things in Christ (Ac 3:21), that is the new heaven and the new earth, as the old things will pass away, for the first heaven and the first earth was gone and the sea is now no more (Apoc 21:1). Jesus said: “Behold, I make all things new” (Apoc 21:8). The inspirational Petrus Romanus (Pope Gregory) laid out the framework or guidelines under which the rulers of evil and the princes of darkness will be destroyed. These are also highlighted in the book ‘Understanding the Apocalypse.’
In conclusion, Our Lady of Guadalupe inspired Pope Gregory the Great, to lay the groundwork for Her apparitions and prophecies which led to the annihilation of the evil empire of Montezuma in Mexico. Her inspiration encouraged and led Christopher Columbus to persevere in his struggle to find ‘the new world,’ which brought relief and hope to the oppressed both in the ‘new world’ and in the ‘old world.’ The Great Monarch, Petrus Romanus, will see in the prophetic courage of Gregory the Great, the willingness of Christopher Columbus to not fear the storm and rebukes, to hold fast the confession of faith and trust in the Lord, and above all, to always be as the three wise men, finding Jesus through Mary (Mt 2:11).
It is through the love and direction of Our Blessed Mother Mary, Queen of All Nations, that the Eucharistic Reign of Christ is fulfilled on earth, in which the Kingship of Christ is fully established under Jesus Christ the King of All Creation. The Kingdom of God the Father is come, on earth as it is in Heaven (Mt 6:10). Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!