[The Lord] hath filled the hungry with good things;
and the rich he hath sent empty away.
(Luke 1:53, KJV)
We look this week at an image of the Virgin Mary as a protector of the poor that is the most beloved representation of the Mother of Christ in the Western Hemisphere: Our Lady of Guadalupe. According to tradition, the Virgin appeared to the Aztec peasant, Juan Diego, on December 1531 atop a hill in what is now northern Mexico City, showing her special love for indigenous peoples oppressed by Spanish colonizers. She left behind her sacred image on a cloak, enshrined nowadays in a basilica on the site. An unknown artist from El Salvador has replicated the miraculous full-length portrait, standing on a crescent moon, supported by an angel, in a brightly colored enamel on wood panel piece in the trademark style of the artisanal workshops of the folk art center of La Palma. This new Marian image from the New World can be found on the Salvadoran Wood Paintings page in the Schools of Sacred Art section. (John Kohan)