Nine days before Christmas in December 2012, the Christian community where I live held what they call the posada. It’s an annual tradition of faith practice among the Mexican people here, remembering the time when Joseph and Mary, went looking for an inn where she could give birth.
During those nine days participating with our parishioners for the posada in our parish, Corpus Christi, in Rancho Anapra, Juárez, I was really touched by the words of the song they sang. One group was outside holding the Peregrino, which is the statue of Mary on the donkey with St. Joseph. The group inside responded to their request singing.
When the people sang, “Mi Esposa es Maria, Es la Reina Del cielo y Madre va a ser Del Divino Verbo,” I was really touched that these were the words of St. Joseph while they searched for the place where Jesus would be born. I learned to see and honor St. Joseph for being the guardian of the Word.
On the eighth day of the posada, the people asked me to hold the peregrino and lead the group to knock at the door. I saw the crowd following. I looked at the peregrino I was holding, and I was reminded that this is the way I am invited to journey with the people here in Rancho Anapra, to be open and allow them to change my life. My journey with the people is life giving to me, and I feel peace to be able to look beyond my little faith. In my silence I prayed that in our journey of faith together we will open our hearts to allow Jesus to lead our lives always. I believe that it is when we really feel the inner peace inside us, that we will be able to share the peace of the Lord Jesus to one another. This beautiful faith tradition of the posada has become for me a way of entrusting to the Holy Family the protection of all the people and their beloved families who are exposed to a lot of violence in the reality we live in today.
In refl ecting on this symbolic faith journey with the Mexican people, I came to a deep awareness that within me is a space where the Lord Jesus wants to dwell. I asked myself then, how often do I open my heart to listen and feel Jesus’ presence in me, in the innermost depth of my being?