Mexico City, Mexico, Aug 12, 2010 (Catholic News Agency/EWTN News).
The Spanish Royal Federation of Soccer (SRFS) offered the World Cup trophy Spain recently won to Our Lady of Guadalupe at the basilica in Mexico City.
During the emotional ceremony, the president of the SRFS, Angel Maria Villar, presented to trophy to Msgr. Diego Monry, fulfilling a promise made during his last visit to Mexico. The Spanish officials were accompanied by the president of the Mexican Soccer Federation, Jacinto Desio de Maria, and other members of his staff.
In his homily, Msgr. Monroy Ponce emphasized the human values that sports foster in society and proposed that they are a vehicle for the creation of spiritual strength. “An effort of this dimension not only has do to with winning but also with spirituality,” he said.
“We are very happy that the Spanish Royal Federation of Soccer has fulfilled its desire before Our Lady of Guadalupe, the mother of all. Don’t forget that when she appeared to the Juan Diego, she clearly told him, ‘I am your mother,’ which makes her the mother of the entire mixture of the Indigenous and Spanish cultures,” he added.
“Every time I have come to Mexico, I have visited the Basilica. When I came to sign the agreement for the match in Mexico I went to Mass and I prayed for one thing, to be world champions. I am selfish—you’re not supposed to ask for those things and the mother of God granted it to me,” Villar said.
Spain and Mexico will match up for a game in celebration of the Bicentennial of Mexico’s independence.
Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared to an peasant man named Juan Diego in 1531, just a few years after the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors. After he told the local bishop of his vision, the image of Our Lady appeared on his tilma. This miracle led to the conversion of Mexico.
Juan Diego was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2002.