Where to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe this year

Denver Catholic Staff

Below is a list of parish events happening around the archdiocese to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe Dec. 12.

Parish-Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe: 1209 W 36th Ave, Denver, CO 80211.

5 a.m. Songs to Our Lady; Masses in Spanish: 6 a.m., 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m., 10 a.m. (bilingual), 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m., 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m. A mariachi band will play at all Masses.

Annunciation: 3601 Humboldt St, Denver, CO 80205.

6 p.m. Mass in Spanish followed by a play of the Apparitions of Our Lady.

Holy Rosary: 4688 Pearl Street, Denver, CO 80216.

6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Masses sin Spanish.

St. Dominic: 3053 West 29th Avenue, Denver, CO 80211.

6 p.m. Procession with “matachines” dancers; 7 p.m. Mass in Spanish followed by play of the Apparitions and Songs to Our Lady; 8 p.m. Dinner with groups from Peru, Brazil and Bolivia, and Mexican folkloric dances.

Saint Joseph: 600 Galapago Street, Denver, CO 80204.

7:45 a.m. Mass in English; 6:30 p.m. Mass in Spanish

Our Lady of Peace: 1311 Third Street, Greeley, CO 80631.

4 a.m. Songs to Our Lady, native dances and food; 12 p.m. Mass in Spanish; 5 p.m. Procession to Island Grove Park; 6 Mass in Spanish at Island Grove Park presided by Bishop Jorge Rodriguez.

Our Lady Mother of the Church: 6690 East 72nd Ave, Commerce City, CO 80022.

5 a.m. Songs to our Lady with mariachi; 6 a.m. Mass in Spanish; 7 a.m. social gathering; 8 a.m. Mass in English; 7 p.m. Mass in Spanish; 8 p.m. social gathering.

Sacred Heart of Jesus: 1318 Mapleton Avenue, Boulder, CO 80304.

4:50 a.m. Songs to Our Lady followed by the Rosary; 7 a.m. Mass in Spanish; 8 a.m. Social gathering with tamales and hot chocolate at the Jubilee Hall; 8-10 a.m. Dance performances.

St. John the Evangelist: 1730 West 12th Street, Loveland, CO 80537.

5-7 a.m. Songs to Our Lady with mariachi followed by social gathering and hot beverages; 4 p.m. Rosary; 5-6 p.m. Dances to our Lady; 6:15 p.m. Mass in Spanish followed by social gathering.

St. Mary: 790 E 7th St, Rifle, CO 81650.

4 a.m. Songs to Our Lady with mariachi; 5 a.m. Mass in Spanish; 7:30 a.m. Mass in English; 6 p.m. Mass in Spanish.

St. Michael the Archangel: 19099 E Floyd Ave, Aurora, CO 80013.

4 a.m. Songs to Our Lady and Mass in Spanish with mariachi; 7 p.m. Mass in Spanish with mariachi and Coronation of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

St. Michael: 678 School Street, Craig, CO 81625.

4 p.m. “Matachines” dancers; 5:45 p.m. Rosary and flower offerings; 6:30 p.m. Mass in Spanish with mariachi followed by social gathering and dinner at parish hall (bring dessert).

St. Nicholas: 520 Marion Avenue, Platteville, CO 80651.

5:30 a.m. Songs to Our Lady beginning outside; 7 a.m. Last prayer of the novena; 6 p.m. Mass in Spanish followed by a social gathering and blessing of images.

St. Stephen Protomartyr: 1885 Blake Avenue, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601.

5 a.m. Mass in Spanish followed by Songs to Our Lady; 7:30 a.m. Mass in English; 2 p.m. play of the Apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe; 7 p.m. Mass in Spanish. “Matachines” dancers, food and talks will take place all day at the parish center.

St. Therese: 43 Kingston St, Aurora, CO, 80010.

5:30 p.m. Rosary; 6 p.m. Mass in Spanish followed by dinner and dance performances.

COMING UP: Why stay in the Church?

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There are many people who have either left the Church or are currently considering leaving because of the scandals of recent decades. We have felt pain and righteous anger at our leaders and have suffered scandal from their betrayal. For some, the grand jury reports and lack of accountability for bishops have been the last straw. It’s hard to blame people for feeling this way, but we have to ask with Peter, “to whom, Lord, shall we go?” (John 6:68).

Significantly, this question comes after many disciples walked out on Jesus for his teaching on the Eucharist, and it is the Eucharist that should be at the center of any response to the crisis. Peter answers his own question: “you have the words of everlasting life” (John 6:68). The Church is Jesus’ own body in the world, and we are members of his mystical body, given eternal life by consuming his own flesh at Mass. Without the Eucharist, Jesus’ presence in the flesh, the very heart of the Church, where would we be?

Bishop Robert Barron echoes Peter’s question in a recent pamphlet-style book, with over a million copies in print, Letter to a Suffering Church: A Bishop Speaks on the Sexual Abuse Crisis (Word on Fire, 2019). He turns to the Bible and Church history to look for perspective on the crisis. Because of the centrality of the Eucharist in the Church, the betrayal of some of our priests and bishops takes on greater significance. They act in persona Christi at Mass, offering the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross to the Father, and we depend on them for our sacramental life.

Fortunately, the validity of the sacraments does not depend upon the sinlessness of priests, but rather the holiness of God. Barron points out, however, that priests will not get off easy, given the extremely harsh words that Jesus offers to those who lead children astray: “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me;  but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin,  it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the man by whom the temptation comes!” (Mt 18:7-9). Barron also references the punishment of Eli, in 1 Samuel 2-4, who as priest and judge of Israel watched his own sons, who were also priests, abuse the people. Barron argues that this scene gives us the best example of God’s retribution for allowing abuse to happen and not correcting it.

Barron also looks at the tumultuous story of Church history for context on the current crisis. Although the Church is the mystical body of Christ, he references St. Paul assertion that we bear our treasure in earthen vessels, as evidenced by the human weakness of Christians throughout history. In fact, this weakness manifests the Lord’s grace guiding and preserving the Church in spite of us. Barron quotes Belloc that a proof of the Church’s divine foundation “might be found in the fact that no merely human institution conducted with such knavish imbecility would have lasted a fortnight” (43). Heresies, sinful popes, and sexual perversity have not fundamentally destroyed the Lord’s work, even if they have turned many people away. God has promised to remain with his Church and his providence will guide us especially through dark moments.

The crisis challenges us and raises the question of why we are Catholic. Most of us have been born Catholic and may take our faith for granted as something we’ve inherited from our parents. We may view belonging to the Church like membership in a voluntary organization. Rather, our life as members of Christ’s Body is a gift from God that changes our identity and unites us to God and our fellow Christians. As we experience challenges to faith, it is an opportunity to embrace this identity even more strongly — not as something that depends upon myself or anyone else in the Church, but on God. We go to Church to honor and thank him and to receive his grace, not to be a part of a human organization.

The Church is a family, called together by God, but, like any family, we experience pain from our own and each other’s sinfulness. As family, we can’t give up on each other, but have to “stay and fight” as Barron exhorts us, helping each other to be faithful to the mission that Jesus gave us: to love one another as he has loved us and to share the Good News of his salvation.

Featured Photo by Josh Applegate on Unsplash