|About 3,500 people took part in the Diocese of Oakland's ninth annual pilgrimage to honor Our Lady of Guadalupe on Dec. 6, in the 7.5-mile procession through Oakland from St. Louis Bertrand Church in East Oakland down East 14th Street and Lakeshore Avenue to the Cathedral of Christ the Light. The annual pilgrimage takes place on the Saturday closest to the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the patroness of the Americas. "I was thrilled with the turnout, as thousands of parishioners from all over our diocese converged on the parish of St. Louis Bertrand for the start of the march. I blessed all the parish floats, musicians, choirs and folk dancing groups," said Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ. The procession took five hours, the bishop said. "The cathedral was filled to overflowing for Mass in honor of Our Lady, with the plaza outside and the downstairs conference center also full of participants. In these days when there are protests and violence and destruction, it was beautiful to have a pilgrimage walk in honor of the Queen of Peace. I am proud of our strong Latino community in the Diocese of Oakland. May the Blessed Virgin, who appeared to St. Juan Diego at Tepeyac, intercede for all of us.
All: RAÚL AYRALA/THE CATHOLIC VOICE