The Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico has some special mission sites, such as the parish communities of Xochistlahuaca and Tlacoachistlahuaca, which serve the local indigenous peoples in the mountains of Guerrero. However, there are many other places that demand attention, especially during Holy Week, and the friars are always ready to collaborate.

This year, the friars conducted a mission to the Cerritos de Zavala community, one hour from San Luis Potosí, the capital of the state that bears the same name. It is a very arid place with thorny vegetation. The main enterprise in the area is growing chili peppers. It is a place where the phenomenon of migration to the United States is part of the local reality and culture.
These missions to the people are conducted by student friars from the formation houses of the Province and young people in the process of vocational discernment. They are also joined by some friar priests who do not have direct responsibility in a parish. Various religious and lay groups that are in close contact with the friars also take part in this work.
The mission officially started with a procession on Palm Sunday (April 2, 2023). On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of Holy Week, the day began with the recitation of the Rosary at 6:00 a.m., followed by activities and catechesis for children. In the afternoon, there was catechesis for young people and adults, confession and Mass. During the Easter Triduum, the faithful took part in the celebrations as prescribed by the liturgical calendar.
The missionary mandate that Jesus gave to his disciples is something that St. Francis made his own by giving it to his friars. Going forth to proclaim the Gospel is an activity that is always valid and much needed. We understand the importance of going forth from one’s own place to evangelize. This is what happens in the mission ad gentes; however, the general mission of the Church spans all times and places, so missions to the local people are equally important. This year’s mission was a wonderful experience. God gave the people involved an opportunity to share their faith and enrich each other by giving and receiving many gifts of grace.

At the end of the mission, everyone expressed their best wishes for Easter and promised to continue to pray for one another. Let us pray to God for the missions.