Latino Catholics sing 'las mañanitas' to Our Lady of Guadalupe
For the eighth consecutive year, Latino Catholics gathered in anticipation of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe and offered “Las Mañanitas,” a traditional serenade to Our Lady on the vigil of her feast day, followed by a Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul.
Faithful from across Philadelphia headed on foot to the Cathedral Dec. 11 from five different local parishes including St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Joan of Arch, Visitation B.V.M., Annunciation B.V.M. and St Michael.
It was a celebration prepared six months in advance, by the community for the community, in which approximately 3,000 roses were offered during the ceremony. Another traditional component was the performance of a mariachi band. “In fact, for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico, there is not a single parish without a mariachi band accompanying the Mass, " said Antonio Tepayotl, one of the main organizers of the celebration.
One of the most prominent mariachi bands in the region, “Mariachi Flores,” began their performance around 8 p.m. “Our participation is not just as a mariachi, but as Mexicans. It's an identity. I am Catholic and I am a believer, we grew up with guadalupan roots," said José Flores, member of the band.