July 10, 2001
Subject: Re: [AztlanNet: ARTS|LETTERS] Rudy
y Señorita de Guadalupe
Date: Tue, 10 Jul 2001 19:57:30 -0000
From: "Pedro Romero Sedeno" <email@example.com>
Rights carry responsibilities, no? As to the Museum's right to validate "Our Lady", it seems to me the Museum has a responsibility to educate as to the merits for validation. The Museum has not done so. I am not trying to erode that right but only to hold the Museum accountable to its mission to responsibly educate.
As to your questions about the Penitente experience, I was just this Sunday speaking to a young ex-marine from Pecos, NM who told of how he grew up in the morada, not in a Catholic Church. He related how it was: dirt floors, kneeling and praying to "Our Mother", in his words. He remembers seeing the rituals of devotion which included self-flagellation. He expressed that the raza in the back-country speak of war about this Museum thing, of coming to Santa to burn the plaza down. This would be same feeling if a museum in Mexico was pushing "la Senorita de guadalupe". This is what I was told. This is how people feel. Some of these were the same ones struggling with Tijerina back then. he told me this at the baptism celebration for his new son. Maybe it was just the beer talking.
But he did bring up the issue, not me. He (as also did his wife) expressed support for what he saw of me on the news challenging the Museum's ofrenda to the computer-altar spoof. CyberArte makes a spoof of Catholic forms and traditions. It spoofs a cultural presence centered on religious faith, a presence for centuries in New Mexico. Alma's "Our lady" is a revolt against the ecclesiastical tyranny of a religious instituion, but remains stuck in bondage to secular totalitarianism.
How do I explain this to nuestra raza in the backcountry? Pray for peace y vaya con Dios, Rudy. .