Our Lady of Chiquinquira

Our Lady of Chiquinquira, InfoMistico.com

She is known as the Lady of El Saladillo. Because she made the conscious decision to dwell among the underprivileged, mulattos, little blacks, artisans and servants of the white owners of the Plaza Mayor.

Our Lady of Chiquinquirá – November 18 – Zulia State, Venezuela

In addition, it was located in an old hermitage that had been there for many years and had been planted in the area where Saint John of God was venerated, among the busy streets and salt flats near the lake.

In the town of Saladillo of Maracaibo, there were numerous small houses with beautiful gates and bright colors. Many people gave her all their diamonds to crown her, after helping to build her a large and impressive temple. They referred to her as their queen.

But one-day Saladillo’s houses were destroyed, its parks razed and the city’s spirit crushed. Then the Virgin was left alone in the great basilica that the disinherited, mulattos and black people – grandparents, parents and children of El Saladillo – had built for her. She was also known as the Queen of La Guajira by the Wayú people.

The Virgin of the Rosary has reigned for a long time. She appeared to a monk named Domingo de Guzman in Fatima’s small Portuguese village. The year was 1208. In her hand, she carried a rosary. He instructed him in its use and asked him to impart it to others.

Before a conflict, Dominic taught it to the men of Simon IV de Montfort. It is said that the rosary was decisive in the victory of the Catholic army and Montfort built the first chapel in honor of the image as thanks.

She also reigns in Colombia. After performing numerous miracles, Mary was formally named patroness of that nation by order of July 18, 1829.


The history of the Virgin of the Rosary begins in the settlement known as Sutamarchan.

The Virgin of the Rosary was painted for the chapel of the Commendatore Antonio de Santana around 1562 by a silversmith from Tunja, another small town in Colombia. The cotton blanket coarsely woven by the Indians served as a canvas for the painting.

He then extracted the colors for the painting from flowers, fruits, roots and earth, combining them with egg whites in a process known as tempera.

The Virgin Mary is accompanied by St. Andrew the Apostle to this day, while St. Anthony of Padua is painted to the left of the Virgin, as the canvas was wider than it was long.

Firstly, to thank the Dominican priest Andres de Jadraque for his recommendation and secondly, to commemorate the Commendatore known as Juan.

Rainwater from the thatched roof was damaging the work until its images lost definition and became blurred. The painting was finally returned to its owner and moved to the junk room of an old chapel in Chiquinquira. Approximately since 1578.


The indigenous language word for “place of worship of the gods” is Xequenquira.

This small settlement is located in the valley of Sarabita, near Boyaca, in a hollow covered with fog and swamps, where rich forests of the turpentine-producing terebinth tree thrive. Terebinth is mentioned three times in the Old Testament.

Mara Ramos, the sister-in-law of the elderly messenger, had kept the image and brought it to a small shrine on the family property in Chiquinquira.

The Virgin Mary seemed to emerge from the canvas, full of light, when the portrait was illuminated one morning, her faded colors coming to life. An indigenous woman who was talking to her at the time saw it, as did her young son, who cried out:

—Mother, Mother, Mother, why is the Virgin sitting on the ground?

Her first miracle took place in Colombia.

Devotees of the Our Lady of Chiquinquira

The fishermen and sailors of Maracaibo were the first faithful of the Virgin of Chiquinquira since their boats and canoes did not weigh anchor without her image on board.

Thus, the Chiquinquirá traveled to Zulia with her crescent moon, her mantle, her rosary and her child in the movement of the waves of the sea. She came from the Colombian rivers and arrived by the lake. On a ship that carried cargo to ports on other continents and across the seas. Two hundred years later.

Some claim that this painting, dating from the sixteenth century, was stolen by pirates during one of their raids on Colombian ports. The washerwomen then beat their clothes on the seashore. And they watched the piraguas, bongos and bandits pass by in the perpetual arrivals and departures of the Maracaibo trade.

María Cardenas was one of them

Between Venezuela and Ciencias streets, in the heart of Maracaibo, she lived in a modest house. She was working when she noticed a small plank floating in the sea. He picked it up and put it in his jar as a lid. A few days later, he watched as the graphs were drawn. Then he hung it on his wall.

Mara Cardenas was the first to be amazed. After making a lot of noise and banging on the wall, three images – a Virgin and a child mounted on a crescent moon; and two saints, one on each side – lit up in the small square.

The ochre and sepias, which were also created with natural materials and tempera, took on new life and enhanced their colors. It was the Virgin of the Rosary of Chiquinquira. She was a colorful virgin. She was born on November 18, 1709, at dawn.

“Miracle! Miracle!”

The old woman’s cries of “Miracle! Miracle!” marked that day the beginning of her fame and the adoration of the neighborhood, which surpassed its limits.

Later, Maracaibo decided to commemorate her by moving her portrait to the Major Church, also known as the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, the Cathedral of the city. The tombstone became so heavy during the procession that it could not be moved. The voice then said:

-Is it possible that you wish to travel to another place, is that possible, is it possible that you wish to travel to St. John of God?

The crowd moved to the right after this thought. The weight eased, becoming as light as a handful of flower petals. Since then, she resides there, neighbor, solitary of the town of Saladillo, cherished Zulian sovereign and enthroned monarch from her secular history and passion.

Maracaibo was once visited by Pope John Paul II. And when he saw her, he said: “She is the Virgin of Zulia. It is the Chinita”.

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With information from Noticia al Dia

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