The Huichol Indians of Jalisco and Nayarit have accomplished the almost incredible feat of maintaining their independence and most of their traditional values well into the 21st century. Thanks to the rugged terrain of the Sierra Madre mountains the Huichols were able to escape the brunt of the Spanish invasion. While their long-anticipated demise as a separate indigenous people has not yet arrived, new warning signs continue to appear on the horizon and the Huichol continue to be under siege by both secular and religious authorities. read more
For Mexico, the Easter holidays are a combination of Semana Santa (Holy Week — Palm Sunday to Easter Saturday) and Pascua (Resurrection Sunday until the following Saturday). For most Mexicans, this 2 week period is the time of year for holiday vacations (good time to not be on the highways — just stay put and enjoy the community of your choice during this holday season). Holy Week celebrates the last days of the Christ's life. Easter is the celebration of the Christ's Resurrection. It is also the release from the sacrifices of Lent. read more
The original version entitled Historia El Tau-Sol (Huichol and Spanish for "sun", which I translated using both the Huichol and the Spanish versions, came to about 3368 words. Therefore I shall give a condensed version of the main outline followed by an attempt to explain its meaning and significance.
This is not an account of the creation of human beings but of their main means of sustenance, namely fire and the sun. Accordingly this particular Huichol narrative begins with the creation of the first hearth fire... read more
"People unfamiliar with the Latin culture are curious, confused, and sometimes repulsed by the emphasis on suffering in religious figures. During Easter in North America, the focus is on the resurrection and the delights of spring. The event is concerned with the awe of transformation. There is resistance to facing the suffering that is a major part of this epic…." read more
It is late afternoon in Mexico, two days before Palm Sunday, and it is the day that honours Nuestra Señora de los Dolores — Our Lady of Sorrows. All over town, San Miguel de Allende's families and b... read more
It had a humble beginning, born of need in the late 1990s.
There were hundreds, maybe a few thousands, of Americans and Canadians, residents and snowbirds, in the region but no religious services in English for many, many miles along the west bank, nothing from El Tecuan to Manzanillo and beyond... read more
A life-sized Virgin Mary statue with imploring, heaven-raised eyes welcomed me into the courtyard of my favourite café in Oaxaca, Mexico. Dozens of what looked to me to be chia pets surrounded her. Wh... read more
All around town, people are carrying babies. It takes me a moment to realize, (mostly because they are swaddled in blankets) that they are not real babies but dolls. Then it takes me another moment and... read more
The Mestiza Madonna. La Virgen Ranchera. The Queen of the Americas. Mystical Rose… no matter what name she is called, one thing is for sure: the beloved Virgin of Guadalupe is the mother of all Mexic... read more
The church bells have been tolling most of the night, interrupted only intermittently by the blast of rockets soaring into the night sky. One resounding boom echoes throughout the city at midnight. Thi... read more
Miles and other Mormon pioneers made something out of almost nothing and the small towns are is still there in the Chihuahua desert, not far from the Piedras Verdes River, on the flat ground near the Sierra Madre Occidental.
Colonia Juarez is 15 or 20 kilometers southwest of Casas Grandes. read more
Holy Week — from Palm Sunday through Easter Sunday — is observed throughout Mexico. However San Miguel de Allende's fervor and pageantry are some of the most powerful and beautiful. The image of E... read more
His predecessor Pope John Paul II visited Mexico on five occasions and was much beloved here. I was just a child during the last papal visit in 2002, a rowdy little Catholic boy who wanted to be a rock star when I grew up. read more
Our Lady of Guadalupe is the beloved patron saint of Mexico and the Americas. Celebrated on December 12, her feast day is a major Mexican holiday. Juan Diego's mantle, carefully preserved in the Basilica, has been subjected to extensive analysis over the years. Experts have authenticated the fabric as dating to the 16th century, but have been unable to determine the type of pigment from which the image was rendered. Most wonderous of all, after 465 years, the image of the Virgen de Guadalupe remains clearly imprinted on the miraculous cloak without visible signs of deterioration. read more