December 2

Virgen de Belén, Belén, Salta, Argentina

Hidelberg J. Ferrino, a sculptor from the Argentine coast, got the idea for the monumental statue of the Virgin of Bethlehem while vacationing in the north in 1977. His old Ford Falcon broke down, and he was stuck in Belén for some time waiting for parts. He became friends with a local official, "Chichí" Jais, brother of the parts dealer, who drummed up support for the project along with the parish priest. The giant image of the town's patroness became a community effort; materials ascended the hill by burro and in the hands of schoolchildren. It was finally installed on the summit of El Tiro overlooking Belén on December 2, 1982, before a large and emotional crowd. The white cement Virgin blesses the valley, holding the child in her left arm and a loaf of bread in her right hand. (Information from "Virgen de Belén," Olimpiadas Nacionales de Contenidos Educativos en Internet, www.oni.escuelas.edu.ar. Photo "Ofreciendo el pan" uploaded by Lisbethvanrijn to  flickr.com/photos/26630977@N04, May 16, 2008.)   

Also commemorated this date:
bulletNossa Senhora de Lourdes, Nossa Senhora de Lourdes, Sergipe, Brazil. First stone of chapel laid, 1917. Feast moved to Feb. 11.
bulletMãezinha, Balasar, Póvoa de Varzim, Porte, Norte, Portugal. First apparition to Blessed Alexandrina Maria da Costa, 1944.

 

Where We Walked ~~~ Mary Ann Daly