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Practicing Belief: The Activities and Rituals of Las Guadalupanas

  • Theresa L. Torres
Chapter
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Abstract

These lines are from a popular hymn, a variant of the traditional birthday song, “Las mañanitas,” which the Guadalupanas sing as they serenade Our Lady of Guadalupe in front of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Kansas City. The Guadalupanas are strongly committed to their Virgin Guadalupe and believe that she is their protector. This song and other traditional Guadalupan hymns are examples of the strength of their popular religious expression. This chapter focuses on the Guadalupanas as a group. The chapter’s primary focus is on how they collectively engage and participate in religious celebrations and organizational activities, such as singing hymns, within their religious and social contexts. This collective engagement is la fuerza, the strength of their solidarity and commitment, as they collaborate and continue their mission.

Keywords

Kansas City Mexican American Woman Sacred Heart Community Commitment Parish Church 
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Notes

  1. 1.
    Ronald Grimes, Beginnings in Ritual Studies, revised ed. (Columbia, South Carolina: University of South Carolina Press, 1995), 24–39.Google Scholar
  2. See also Ronald Grimes, “Ritual Studies: A Comparative Review of Theodore Gaster and Victor Turner.” Religious Studies Review 2, no. 4 (1976): 13–25.Google Scholar
  3. 7.
    Grimes, 30–36. The explanation of the categories for mapping the ritual field was also informed by a paraphrase of Grimes done by Professor Margaret Mary Kelleher, a hand-out from a lecture in her course, Liturgy and Culture, fall 2000, Catholic University of America. See also Catherine Bell, “Ritual, Change, and Changing Ritual,” Worship 63 (1989): 31–41.Google Scholar
  4. 11.
    See Victor Turner, “Symbols and Social Experience in Religious Ritual” in Worship and Ritual In Christianity and Other Religions, ed Mariasusai Dhavamony. (Rome: Gregorian University Press, 1974): 3–21. 12 MaryGoogle Scholar
  5. S. Pardo, Mexican American Women Activists: Identity and Resistance in Two Los Angeles Communities (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1998).Google Scholar
  6. 20.
    See Richard Santillán, “Midwestern Mexican American Women and the Struggle for Gender Equality: A Historical Overview, 1920s–1960s,” Perspectives in Mexican American Studies 5 (1995), 107. Santill á n describes the mentoring relationships between the elder generations of Mexican American women and their younger counterparts.Google Scholar
  7. 21.
    Milagros Peña, “Latina Empowerment, Border Realities, and Faith-based Organizations,” in Handbook for the Sociology of Religion, ed. Michele Dillon (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2003), 6.Google Scholar
  8. See also Milagros Peña, Latina Activists Across Borders: Women’s Grassroots Organizing in Mexico and Texas (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2007).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 22.
    Peña, 8. See also Ana María Díaz-Stevens, “The Saving Grace: The Matriarchal Core of Latino Catholicism,” Latino Studies Journal 4, no. 3 (September 1993): 60–78;Google Scholar
  10. Vicki Ruiz, Cannery Women, Cannery Lives: Mexican American Women, Unionization, and the California Food Processing Industry (Alburquerque, NM: New Mexico University Press, 1987).Google Scholar
  11. 23.
    Robert Bellah and others, Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life, new ed. with new intro. (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1996), xxx.Google Scholar

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© Theresa L. Torres 2013

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  • Theresa L. Torres

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