Miraculous images and votive offerings in Mexico

Many shrines and basilicas in Mexico are cluttered with petitionary and votive offerings of Catholic devotees seeking or paying gratitude for miracles. These devotees apply human and supernatural attributes to certain sacred images, such as the Virgin of Guadalupe, the Lord of Chalma, and the Virgin of San Juan de los Lagos, that they say have the power to perform miracles. Believers write letters, provide documents and photos, pin up clothing, hair and braids, or create collages or other objects that either ask for miracles or give thanks for miracles received.

In a talk at the College of the Holy Cross on October 5, 2015, Frank Graziano, John D. MacArthur Professor of Hispanic Studies at Connecticut College, describes the types of miracles performed and illustrates the rich variety of votive offerings made in gratitude in compensation. The talk is based on his book, "Miraculous Images and Votive Offerings in Mexico" (Oxford University Press, 2015).