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Guillermo Gonzalez was sent by his boss to Veracruz to measure some lands. He went by horse. Because it was very hot, he stopped to take a short rest by the river. He fell asleep and heard a voice in his dream that was calling him. He woke up and saw three crocodiles ready to attack him. He’s sure it was the Virgin of Guadalupe who warned him in his dream, and he thanks for saving him.

Tecolulta, Veracruz, 1955

Getting with Maria Morales’ son to swim in the spring where the serpent ate the toad, Virginia del Pozo felt sick and pain. She was very scared and implored the Lord of the Faint from Tapazulapan, Oaxaca, for intervention so that it wouldn’t be a deadly illness. Fortunately and by unknown reason, she got pregnant and healthy. Ascribing it to the miracle of the Lord of the Faint, she ordered E. Espintla P. to paint this exvoto.

Year 2007, Villa del Progreso

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I went to the river to do the laundry and fell asleep on the riverbank because it was nice and fresh over there. I was dreaming of a handsome man who looked me right in the eyes while talking about love. Then I woke up, and it was a crocodile who was looking straight at me. It was very close. I thank the Virgin of Zapopan for giving me fast reflexes. I instantly got up and ran far away before the animal did something to me. Later I came back for the clothes, and I thank for the crocodile didn’t eat them.

I’m infinitely grateful to the Holy Child of Atocha for delivering us from dying drowning in Rio Bravo when we—my son and I—tried to cross it. The current was dangerously dragging us down, and I prayed to the Child and right away saw a branch. I grabbed it and managed to get us out of the river. We arrived well to our destination, finding a job in the United States. I ordered to make this retablo for receiving the favor.

Evaristo and son
Jerez, Zacatecas
December 8, 1980

Alfredo and his wife Silvia and their son Daniel thank the Virgin of Guadalupe because they managed to cross the Rio Bravo without being noticed by the immigration police. They got to the U.S. and earn some bucks to support themselves. They wholeheartedly ask you to always protect them on their way.

January 25, 1985, Mexico City

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December 31, 1968

When I, full of hope of getting into the United States, crossed the Rio Bravo, I was caught by the migration police. He threatened me with death, pointing his gun in my mouth. I saw that there was no salvation for me, and I implored the Holy Virgin of Guadalupe. I realized what it is to be in a foreign land. I was searched, they took the little i got on me, then they threw me back to the river. I came back, relaying on my luck. I promised to bring you this retablo when I came back to my land. Now I do what I promised because you stayed with me.

Tomas Huerta — Zitacuaro, Michoacan

We dedicate this retablo to Saint Sebastian the martyr who saved us and our little house during a flood on the Chiapa river.

The Cruz family

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Señor Isidro thanks the Virgin of San Juan for helping him save his horse the Favorite from dying drowning when he came closer to the water to drink and fell into the river. Isidro asks you to give his hose health so he could keep on working on his lands so that his family would stay well and wouldn’t lack anything,

Villa del Carbon, August 27, 1996

Ambrosio Herrera was spying on his master’s daughter while she was swimming in the river. Suddenly the branch broke off, and he fell down. He thanks Saint Charbel for he didn’t drown and the girl didn’t accuse him.

Puebla, 1920

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The factory near the village dumped the toxic wastes into the river, and the animals and fish were dying. All the village was at risk of dying of hunger. We prayed the saints to make the water clean as before. Then the factory grew and they paid the politicians not to impede toxic water dumping. Now no one can live there, not the animals, not the fish, nothing.

Angela Serrano, December 20, 1991

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I went to the river to swim in a place where nobody comes. When I was drying myself off I saw an enormous crocodile stealthily approaching me. Surely, the beast swam up the river because I’ve never seen crocodiles here. Seeing that my life was in danger, I implored Saint Barbara asking for her protection. She gave me courage to keep my calm. I climbed up the rocks very slowly and then ran at full speed, and the crocodile stayed there with his opened mouth and without lunch. I thank for saving my life.

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When my son Anacleto was swimming in Rio Verde, came a strong current and dragged him to the rocks, but thanks to the Holy Child of Atocha I could save him.

Sra. Matilde Garcia thanks him

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I, Juan Gomez, pay with this retablo giving infinite thanks for not dying drowning in Rio Bravo when I tried to cross it to the United States to get my American dream. I couldn’t do it because of this racist Donald Trump, but I had a dream in which I saw a skeleton pulling Trump to the hell for being such a pig. Viva Mexico, bastards!

May 18, 2019