Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

The First Guadalupan Pastoral Manual: Luis Laso De La Vega's Huei Tlamahuiçoltica (1649)

  • Timothy Matovina (a1)

Abstract

Millions of devotees acclaim the Nahuatl-language Nican mopohua account of the apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe to Juan Diego as the foundational text of the Guadalupe tradition. A number of scholarly analyses have also examined the Nican mopohua as a prime source for that tradition. But no previous study has focused on a theological examination of Luis Laso de la Vega's Huei tlamahuiçoltica (1649), in which the Nican mopohua was first published. Huei tlamahuiçoltica is the premier Guadalupan pastoral manual and encompasses other important material, such as the Nican motecpana account of miracles attributed to Guadalupe's intercession, and the earliest published synopsis of Juan Diego's life posed as a model for Christian discipleship. This article explores Laso de la Vega's contributions and the ongoing significance of his treatise for the development of theological works and pastoral ministries centered on Guadalupe.

Copyright

References

Hide All

1 Elizondo, Virgilio, Guadalupe: Mother of the New Creation (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 1997). See also K[intana], Angel María Garibay, “La maternidad de María en el mensaje guadalupano,” in La maternidad espiritual de María: Conferencias leídas en los Congresos Mariológicos 7–12 octubre 1957 y 9–12 octubre 1960 (Mexico City: Editorial Jus, 1961), 187202; Garibay, “The Spiritual Motherhood of Mary,” in A Handbook on Guadalupe (New Bedford, MA: Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, 1997), 916; Acuña, Clodomiro L. Siller, Flor y canto del Tepeyac: Historia de las apariciones de Santa María de Guadalupe; Texto y comentario (Xalapa, Mexico: Servir, 1981); Elizondo, La Morenita: Evangelizer of the Americas (San Antonio: Mexican American Cultural Center, 1980); Rodriguez, Jeanette, Our Lady of Guadalupe: Faith and Empowerment among Mexican-American Women (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1994); Nebel, Richard, Santa María Tonantzin, Virgen de Guadalupe: Continuidad y transformación religiosa en México (Mexico City: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1995); Guerrero, José Luis, El Nican mopohua: Un intento de exégesis, 2 vols. (Mexico City: Realidad, Teoría, y Práctica, 1998).

2 Poole, Stafford, Our Lady of Guadalupe: The Origins and Sources of a Mexican National Symbol, 1531–1797 (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1995), 110–26; Brading, D. A., Mexican Phoenix: Our Lady of Guadalupe, Image and Tradition across Five Centuries (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001), 8188; Sánchez, Miguel, Imagen de la Virgen María (Mexico City: Viuda de Bernardo Calderón, 1648), as reprinted in Testimonios históricos Guadalupanos, ed. de la Torre Villar, Ernesto and de Anda, Ramiro Navarro (Mexico City: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1982), 152267.

3 For opposing arguments on the authorship of the Nican mopohua, see Fernández, Fidel González, Sánchez, Eduardo Chávez, and Rosado, José Luis Guerrero, El encuentro de la Virgen de Guadalupe y Juan Diego, 4th ed. (Mexico City: Editorial Porrúa, 2001), 171–74; Sousa, Lisa, Poole, Stafford, and Lockhart, James, ed. and trans., The Story of Guadalupe: Luis Laso de la Vega's Huei tlamahuiçoltica of 1649 (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1998), 147, esp. 43–47.

4 Sánchez, Imagen de la Virgen María, 263.

5 Matovina, Timothy, “Guadalupe at Calvary: Patristic Theology in Miguel Sánchez's Imagen de la Virgen María (1648),” Theological Studies 64 (2003): 795811.

6 de la Vega, Luis Laso, Huei tlamahuiçoltica . . . (Mexico City: Imprenta de Juan Ruiz, 1649), reprinted with an English translation in Sousa, Poole, and Lockhart, Story of Guadalupe, 51. Subsequent quotations from Huei tlamahuiçoltica are also from Sousa, Poole, and Lockhart's translation and are cited parenthetically in the text by page number.

7 Sánchez, Imagen de la Virgen María, 245–55. The Stradanus engraving is reprinted in Cuadriello, Jaime, Galván, Carmen de Monserrat Robledo, and Mariscal, Beatriz Berndt León, La Reina de las Américas: Works of Art from the Museum of the Basílica de Guadalupe (Chicago: Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, 1996), 106. The most detailed treatment of the Stradanus engraving is Peterson, Jeanette Favrot, “Canonizing a Cult: A Wonder-Working Guadalupe in the Seventeenth Century,” in Religion in New Spain, ed. Schroeder, Susan and Poole, Stafford (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2007), 125–56.

8 For the practice of children participating in Spanish penitential processions, see Christian, William A., Apparitions in Late Medieval and Renaissance Spain (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1981), 217–18.

9 Sánchez, Imagen de la Virgen María, 184–86. Other biblical figures that Sánchez compares to Juan Diego include John the Evangelist, King David's friend Jonathan, Adam, and the patriarch Jacob. Ibid., 179, 193–94, 229–30, 237–38.

10 The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute at the University of Dayton provides an excellent overview of The Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary originally created by Chad Pfoutz and available at http://campus.udayton.edu/mary/prayers/LittleOfficeBVM.htm. The cited text is based on the antiphon for Psalm 95 from the Third Nocturn of Matins.

11 Taylor, William B., “The Virgin of Guadalupe in New Spain: An Inquiry into the Social History of Marian Devotion,” American Ethnologist 14 (February 1987): 1415; Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred: Priests and Parishioners in Eighteenth-Century Mexico (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1996), 285–86; Taylor, Shrines and Miraculous Images: Religious Life in Mexico before the Reforma (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2010), esp. 125.

12 de la Vega, Luis Lasso [Laso], Se apareció maravillosamente la Reina del Cielo Santa María, nuestra Amada Madre de Guadalupe, aquí cerca de la ciudad de México en el lugar nombrado Tepeyácac, ed. and trans. Velázquez, Primo Feliciano (Mexico City: Carreño e hijo, 1926). The Velázquez translation of Huei tlamahuiçoltica is reprinted in De la Torre Villar and Navarro de Anda, Testimonios históricos Guadalupanos, 282–308; the first and only English translation of the entire treatise is Sousa, Poole, and Lockhart, Story of Guadalupe, published in 1998.

13 Francisco Verdugo Quetzalmamalitzin, Testamento [Will], 2 April 1563, reprinted in González Fernández, Chávez Sánchez, and Guerrero Rosado, El encuentro de la Virgen de Guadalupe y Juan Diego, 363–64; Juan Bautista, Anales, reprinted in ibid., 325–26; Cawley, Martinus, Anthology of Early Guadalupan Literature (Lafayette, OR: Guadalupe Abbey, 1984), 7980; Taylor, Shrines and Miraculous Images, 125. For further studies of the history of Guadalupan devotion during the colonial era in New Spain, see the influential works of William B. Taylor cited in note 11 above.

14 Smith, Michael E., The Aztecs (Cambridge, MA: Blackwell, 1996), 6064; Taylor, “Virgin of Guadalupe in New Spain,” 19–24; Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred, 291–96; Carrasco, Davíd, Religions of Mesoamerica: Cosmovision and Ceremonial Centers (San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1990), 135–38.

15 Espín, Orlando O., The Faith of the People: Theological Reflections on Popular Catholicism (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 1997), 59; Burkhart, Louise M., “The Cult of the Virgin of Guadalupe in Mexico,” in South and Meso-American Native Spirituality: From the Cult of the Feathered Serpent to the Theology of Liberation, ed. Gossen, Gary H. in collaboration with Miguel León-Portilla (New York: Crossroad, 1993), 211. For a treatment of understandings of a stern God and compassionate Mary in the longer history of Christianity, see Johnson, Elizabeth A., Truly Our Sister: A Theology of Mary in the Communion of Saints (New York: Continuum, 2003), chap. 4, “Cul-de-Sac: The Maternal Face of God.”

16 “Información por el sermón de 1556,” reprinted in De la Torre Villar and Navarro de Anda, Testimonios históricos Guadalupanos, 44; Father John Koelsch, letter to the author, 22 September 2009.

17 A facsimile and transcription of the official inquiry can be found in Sánchez, Eduardo Chávez, La Virgen de Guadalupe y Juan Diego en las informaciones jurídicas de 1666, 2nd ed. (Mexico City: Ángel Servin, 2002); quotations at 152, 166, 178–79.

18 José de Jesús Manríquez y Zárate, Carta pastoral que el Excmo. y Rvmo. Obispo de Huejutla dirige a sus diocesanos sobre las necesidades de trabajar ahincadamente por la Glorificación de Juan Diego en este mundo, 12 April 1939, as reprinted in Beltrán, Lauro López, Manríquez y Zárate, primer obispo de Huejutla, sublimador de Juan Diego, heroico defensor de la fe: Obra conmemorativa del quinto centenario del natalicio de Juan Diego, 1474–1974 (Mexico City: Editorial Tradición, 1974), 4047; Manríquez y Zárate, ¿Quien fue Juan Diego? (1939), as reprinted in López Beltrán, Manríquez y Zárate, 24, 77–84, 155–61; Beltrán, López, La historicidad de Juan Diego y su posible canonización (Mexico City: Editorial Tradición, 1981); Elizondo, Virgilio et al. , A Retreat with Our Lady of Guadalupe and Juan Diego: Heeding the Call (Cincinnati: St. Anthony Messenger Press, 1998); Carrera, Norberto Rivera, Juan Diego: El águila que habla (Mexico City: Plaza & Janés, 2002); Sánchez, Eduardo Chávez, Juan Diego: Una vida de santidad que marcó la historia (Mexico City: Editorial Porrúa, 2002).

19 For an overview of contemporary theological interpretations of Guadalupe, see Matovina, Timothy, “Theologies of Guadalupe: From the Spanish Colonial Era to Pope John Paul II,” Theological Studies 70 (March 2009): 7888.

Keywords

The First Guadalupan Pastoral Manual: Luis Laso De La Vega's Huei Tlamahuiçoltica (1649)

  • Timothy Matovina (a1)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed