A New Crown for Our Lady of Guadalupe
Published Feb 1, 2010 - (Updated Dec 3, 2012)
Featured in Vallarta Lifestyles Magazine, Winter/Spring 2010 issue.
The Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the oldest parish in the region and a popular symbol of Puerto Vallarta, has finally received its new crown, which was blessed in a moving ceremony held October 12, 2009. The original crown, constructed of cement in 1963, collapsed in the earthquake that hit Vallarta in 1995 and had been temporarily replaced by one made of fiberglass.
The new crown came to fruition as a result of the efforts of Amigos de Vallarta de la Parroquia, founded in 2000, in concert with various institutions that have fought over the years for resources to restore the crown to one worthy of its stature. In 2009, with the involvement of the Association of Developers and Timeshare Promoters (ADEPROTUR), the long-awaited project was finally realized.
The Meaning of the Crown
According to Father Esteban Salazar González, the priest in charge of the parish, this crown is a symbol of the Virgin Mary, who is queen. “We should remember every time we see the crown that it is also an invitation to serve our neighbor.”
The new crown, created by Jalisco master sculptor and painter Carlos Terres using his Terroca technique, measures 10 meters across and 15.5 meters high. For added durability, it is reinforced inside with a stainless steel structure. The religious community asked that the new crown resemble the original as much as possible, so rather than finishing it in gold or bronze, Terres used a finish that looks much like cement. However, the sculptor was permitted to incorporate details symbolizing elements important to Puerto Vallarta into its design.
- The construction of the church dates back to 1928.
- This is one of the most beloved parishes, as it is dedicated to the Virgin of Guadalupe.
- The official name of the sculpture is “The Crown of Our Lady of Guadalupe.”
- Terroca or Roca de Terres refers to a technique developed by Charles Terres himself to produce cement rock, limestone and marble.
- The new crown contains symbols of elements such as the sun.