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Vatican Gardens inaugurates Our Lady of Quinche image


The Vatican Gardens has inaugurated this mosaic image of Our Lady of Quinche, the patroness of Ecuador. It is now the sixth image of the Blessed Mother to be placed in the Vatican. 

The ceremony was presided over by Card. Giuseppe Bertello, President of the Governatorate of Vatican City State, who assisted in getting the the image placed there.

According to the Ecuador's Ambassador to the Holy See, the idea to include this image of Our Lady of Quinche was during one of his visits to the Vatican Gardens. 

JOSÉ LUIS ÁLVAREZ
Ecuador's Ambassador to the Holy See
“In this Garden I saw the images of Our Lady from other countries there and I decided to begin the steps to ask the Holy See to allow us to donate an image of Our Lady of Quinche.” “We are two countries that have had a close relationship for a long time.”

During his visit to Latin America in 2015, Pope Francis even visited the Marian national shrine of Our Lady of Quinche; and was impressed by the Ecuadorian's Catholic devotion. 

POPE FRANCIS
“I think that I must say it is a message from Jesus. All this wealth you have, spiritual wealth and piety, comes from having the courage you have.”

This Mosaic was produced by young artist Domenica Barahona. In it she attempts to represent the history and culture of Ecuador.

DOMENICA BARAHONA
Artist
“The background of this mosaic is composed of Ecuadorian wild plants, to show the fauna of Ecuador, which is very important for us.” “On the Blessed Mother's dress there are these pre-Columbian symbols to represent the origin of the image, as it comes from the indigenous of Ecuador. The fact that this version of Our Lady was brought by Europe and the symbols are pre-Columbian, also show the fusion of cultures in Ecuador.

Historically, the original image was commissioned by indigenous people and various miracles are attributed to Our Lady of Quinche, especially in protecting the natives of Oyacachi from bear attacks.