Pope Francis Leading the world to Mary
Before his first trip as pontiff to a place with more Catholics than any other Spanish-speaking country, where he will surely be mobbed by the thousands night and day, the pope requested something likely to be in short supply — a few minutes alone.
His only company will be perhaps the most revered religious artifact in the Western Hemisphere, a piece of fabric bearing the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe.
The request for a few minutes by himself with the image was a stunningly personal one from the pope. But he knows the Virgin well, he said, because she has seen him through difficult times.
“How many times I have been fearful of a problem or that something bad has happened and I don't know how to react, and I pray to her,” said the pope in September, according to quotes distributed by Catholic News Service. Francis celebrates Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Saturday, the second day of a six-day tour of the country.