Posted December 12, 1997 12:00 a.m. EST
WILSON — Maria Torres and her friends are observing a holy day many Americans aren't familiar with. It's called "Our Lady of Guadalupe", a Mexican name for the Virgin Mary. To these followers, it is a sacred occasion.
For Torres, it's about honoring a higher power.
As the story goes, Mary appeared in a vision to an Aztec Indian 500 years ago. She told him to stop the human sacrifice that had been part of the Aztec religion.
"She wanted him to know that no longer did the people have to sacrifice, or offer their own flesh and blood," said Father Phil Byrum of St. Timothy's Episcopal Church. "The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ had offered His Son for all of us."
For the second year, Saint Timothy's Episcopal Church is hosting the celebration as a way to reach out to the growing Latino community. While these newcomers are putting down permanent roots in our state, part of their faith still makes them think of home.
The December 12th celebration includes attendance at mass and a festive feast.