From the Chicago Tribune:
Raaised by his grandmother in Mexico after his parents separated, Gabriel Rojas recalls the breathless anticipation of his mother’s annual visits and the joyful celebration when she arrived.
That same elation overcame Rojas, the choir director at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church, on Thursday, when three replica statues of the Virgin Mary arrived from Mexico to kick off four days of prayers and processions through the Back of the Yards neighborhood. “This situation is like the same thing — we are waiting for our mother to visit us,” said Rojas who has lived in the Back of the Yards since he came to the U.S. in 1998. “We feel protected in a spiritual way… As immigrants sometimes we feel lonely, like being in the middle of the desert, and she’s the one who is there with us.”
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