Many years ago, in primitive times, civilizations used to worship nature deities—deities in charge of the forces of nature, such as a water deity, vegetation deity, earth deity, sky deity or sun and moon deities. Oftentimes, due to severe weather or other natural phenomenon, these earth gods were considered angry and vindictive, requiring human sacrifice, including the murder of innocent children, to appease them.
Moloch was an ancient Egyptian deity of that sort, and people burned their sons or daughters to death as an offering to him. The God of Abraham, Yahweh, not only expressly forbade the murder of children as an offering to this god, but made it clear that He, the True God Who made the heavens and the earth and all that was in it, did not want human sacrifice. The true God was a loving father to humanity, not a bloodthirsty, angry tyrant.
Other “mother-earth gods” were similarly portrayed. Archaeologists have uncovered ritual murders of children in what was known as Capacocha ceremonies to appease the angry earth mother, Pachamama. These ceremonies were not only discovered centuries ago but also recently—the last Capacocha ceremony was discovered in 1999 by archaeologists at the summit of the Llullaillaco volcano in Argentina. The bodies of a seven-year-old boy and a 15-year -old, known as “the Maiden,” had been perfectly preserved, and the study conclusively showed Pachamama as the intended recipient of the barbaric sacrifices. (See Family Life Org. AU Pachamama and child sacrifice).
The Aztec culture of Mexico had similar bloodthirsty gods, Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent, and Tonantzin, the mother-god, which the culture thought required human blood to exist. Aztec priests sacrificed hundreds if not thousands of living humans per year to appease these angry earth gods. (See olg-parish.com/history of the apparitions of our lady of guadalupe to Juan Diego on Tepeyac hill html dashes in between words).
But the true God, loving Creator and Lord of heaven and earth, would be made known again, this time in Mexico.
Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to an Aztec, Juan Diego, in December of 1531 to tell him that the true God was not bloodthirsty, angry and vindictive. She would bring the beautiful message that the true God loved His people and did not want human sacrifice. In an apparition Juan Diego saw a beautiful girl, Mary, bathed in rays of light, who called out his name. The beautiful woman said:
“Dear little son, I love you. I want you to know who I am. I am the Virgin Mary, Mother of the one true God, of Him Who gives life. He is Lord and Creator of heaven and of earth. I desire that there be built a temple at this place where I want to manifest Him, make Him known, give Him to all people through my love, my compassion, my help and my protection.
I truly am your merciful Mother, your Mother and the Mother of all who dwell in this land, and of all mankind, of all those who love me, of those who cry to me, and of those who seek and place their trust in me. Here I shall listen to their weeping and their sorrows. I shall take them all to my heart, and I shall cure their many sufferings, afflictions and sorrows. So run now to Tenochtitlan and tell the Lord Bishop all that you have seen and heard.”
So many beautiful things have emerged from this story. It is worth a look to see the whole history of Jesus’ beautiful mother as appearing that day, Our Lady of Guadalupe. The beautiful mother of God prompted a conversion of Latin America to the God of love, eschewing the brutal, primitive, bloodthirsty gods of old.
The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe is today, December 12th.
And it coincides with a difficult time in our church’s history, and a chance to begin a novena here, at celebratesheen.com.
If you have never prayed the Rosary, look at comepraytherosary.org, or go to YouTube and write the words, Come Pray the Rosary.
And God bless you!!