One Lady of Guadalupe, two celebraciones

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by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (December 17, 2019) – Latinos in Lansing and surrounding communities had two opportunities this month to celebrate Our Lady of Guadalupe—at St. Ann Catholic Church on Friday, December 7, and at Alberto’s Beauty Salon on Thursday, December 12. December 12 is the actual Liturgical Holy Day, as declared by the Pope, commemorating the 1531 appearance of a “Lady from Heaven” on a hill northwest of Mexico City.

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The celebration at St. Ann started with a procession by the children of the parish. They lined up in the church foyer and then entered the sanctuary carrying roses in remembrance of the miraculous sign that Juan Diego asked for in 1531. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

The children are followed by dancers who bring in flowers and incense:

At Alberto’s Beauty Salon, Mariachi Imperial Azteca performed the opening songs while additional chairs were set up as needed:

In Mexico, December 12 is a holiday, and it is common for people to attend Our Lady of Guadalupe Masses during the day. Mexicans in Lansing make accommodations in their work schedules in order to be able to observe the special mass.

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Approximately 100 people participated in the observance on December 12 at Alberto’s Beauty Salon. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
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The St. Ann ceremony drew an estimated 200 people. The evening time slot allowed more people to participate. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Fr. Mark Kalema (right) is the priest at St. Ann. Fr. Leonard Dubi is retired from St. Victor’s in Calumet City and was asked to perform the mass in Spanish. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
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An itinerant priest from Mexico returned to Lansing this year to perform the Our Lady of Guadalupe Mass at Alberto’s Beauty Salon. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Fr. Dubi seems to genuinely enjoy serving people. “Live the mass,” he told the congregation at St. Ann. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
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Though this itinerant priest lives in Mexico, in the US he serves through Immaculate Conception in Chicago. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Fr. Dubi (left) and Fr. Kalema (right) acknowledge the importance of Our Lady of Guadalupe not only to Catholics but specifically to Mexico. Her appearance gave hope to the indigenous Mexicans and the mestizos. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
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Following the mass, congregants gathered in the St. Ann fellowship hall for a meal, music, and raffle prizes. The feast and raffle items were donated by local businesses, including Allstate Insurance, AJ Sweet Occasions, Crystal Rose Beauty Salon, Dream Palace Banquet Hall, La Rosita Grocery Store, Crystal’s Restaurant, La Michoacana Compi, and Emelin Brown PRODIGY. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
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The Mass at Alberto’s is also followed by a feast, donated by local businessman Ernesto Acevedo, who owns neighboring Three Roosters Grocery Store. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

St. Ann Catholic Parish is located at 3010 Ridge Road.

Alberto’s Beauty Salon is located at 3220 E 171st Street.

Three Roosters Grocery is located at 3224 171st Street.