Origins and Meaning
The Candlemas festival has its roots in the East, initially called the "Gathering." Over time, this celebration expanded to the West in the 6th century, incorporating it into the liturgy of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple. The Virgin of Candelaria takes her name from this festival, symbolizing the Light of the world presented by her Mother.
Appearance in Tenerife
The history of the Virgen de la Candelaria is intertwined with the island of Tenerife, where she appeared at the Chimisay ravine, 95 years before the conquest of the island. In 1400's two Guanche shepherds noticed a strange phenomenon when their cattle became agitated and refused to enter the caves. As they approached, they discovered the holy image on a rock
The Apparition and the Miracle
The shepherds tried to make signs for the image to move away, but one of them was left with his arm stiff when trying to carry out the action. The other shepherd tried to hurt her, but was injured instead. Frightened, they ran to tell Mencey Acaymo what had happened. The Mencey, approached the image, and by touching it, the shepherds were healed. Recognizing the supernatural, they decided to take her to the palace.
The image was moved to a cave converted into a chapel and then to the Achbinico cave for public veneration. The conquest of the island in 1526 marked the construction of a sanctuary in honor of Our Lady of Candelaria, whose devotion was recognized.
We, Devotees of the Virgin of Candelaria
By immersing ourselves in this story, we recognize the importance of the Virgin of Candelaria in our lives. We, devotees of this miraculous image, feel the divine presence that illuminates our hearts. The connection with this Marian devotion fills us with gratitude and encourages us to share the story that has been a fundamental part of our faith and devotion.
May the Light of Candelaria continue to guide our steps and fill our lives with its divine protection.