Chapala will welcome the beloved Virgen de Zapopan on Sunday, July 14 for a three-day visit that will be enveloped in fanfare and religious fervor marking the tenth anniversary of the icon’s coronation as La Reina del Lago (Queen of the Lake).
The diminutive figure is scheduled to arrive at the north end of Avenida Madero at 11 a.m., where she will be transferred to a motorized float and joined by a huge entourage of faithful pilgrims for a procession to the San Francisco parish.
The colorful cavalcade will include multiple troupes of costumed ritual dancers, marching bands and platoons of uniformed guardians that will break up formation outside the church just prior to the noon celebration of Mass officiated by Cardinal José Francisco Robles, the archbishop of Guadalajara.
Immediately following the service, the regally attired Queen of the Lake will be paraded along the waterfront Malecón for a blessing over the lake. Afterwards the figure will be carried back to the church where she will lodge for two nights. Festivities will continue at the atrium at the entrance to the church throughout the afternoon and evening.
On Monday, July 15 the Chapala City Council will hold a special session at the Malecón, 10 a.m., to present the Virgin with a golden key to the city. Celebrations of Mass will be held at the parish, noon and 6 p.m., followed by a prayer vigil for a favorable rainy season, 7 p.m. A cultural program is scheduled for 8 p.m. outside the church.
The extended summer tour closes Tuesday, July 16. Tourist boats will queue up at the Chapala pier, 9:30 a.m., to board local inhabitants joining the Virgin’s customary nautical jaunt to the Isla de Alacranes where Mass will be held at the doorsteps of the island chapel. Once back on land, the Virgin’s farewell service is set for 3 p.m.