Saturday, March 30, 2013


Today's the day where we get the name many Chamorro women had in the past; Soledad.

It's easy to confuse Our Lady of Sorrows, La Dolorosa or Nuestra Señora de los Dolores, with Our Lady of Solitude, Nuestra Señora de la Soledad.

They're both sorrowful, and the images are very similar.

But, as the name suggests, with Soledad, we are thinking about how lonely Our Lady felt when her son Jesus was taken away from her.   This devotion is especially focused on Saturday, when the Lord was already buried.  She could not see Him.  All she could do was visit a tomb, sealed up by a large stone.

I find that many images of Nuestra Señora de la Soledad picture her in black (en luto), mourning the death of her son.  Other frequent features are the laced veil that borders her face and the handkerchief she clutches to dry her tears.

Many Chamorro women carried this name, Soledad.  Many times we didn't know it because they were never addressed as Soledad, but as Da or Daling.

Then, of course, there's one of Guam's best-known Spanish forts, Fort Soledad, built around 1810, overlooking Humatak.

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