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Mexico's largest and most important religious holiday, Our Lady of Guadalupe Day, is observed annually on December 12.
Many Mexicans make a pilgrimage on this day to the chapel on Tepayac Hill in Mexico City, where the mother of Jesus is said to have appeared before an Indian peasant named Juan Diego from December 9, 1531 through December 12, 1531.
As the story goes, Mary told Juan to go to the bishop and ask that a church be built on the hill so she could be close to her people. The bishop, needing proof of this vision, asked Juan to have a miracle performed by Mary. Juan returned to Tepayac Hill and found roses growing where there had only been cacti. Juan wrapped the roses in his tilma (cape) along with a picture of Mary to show the bishop. He was convinced and the chapel was built.
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