Agreda Pilgrims in New Mexico: Advancing the Cause of the "Lady in Blue"

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Pilgrims from Agreda, Spain, recently visited the University of New Mexico in an effort to build cultural ties and advance the cause of sainthood for their local heroine, the Venerable Sor Maria de Jesus de Agreda. Sister Maria, a Franciscan nun renowned for her intellect, religious devotion and service to King Felipe IV of Spain during the 17th century, is particularly revered for the hundreds of "bilocations" she was known to have performed in her lifetime: At such times, without physically leaving Agreda, Sister Maria was said to have appeared to the native Jumanos in New Mexico and Texas, including the areas that came to be the Salinas Mission and today's Mountainair.

While at the University, the pilgrims were shown a selection of the Center for Southwest Research and Special Collections documents relating to Sor Maria, together with an overview of the library's web resources, features and collections accessible from abroad. Additional meetings with faculty and historians provided rich opportunities for the Agreda group and local scholars to share cultural experiences and advocate for the causes of sainthood and recognition for the Venerable Sor Maria.

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