If you don´t come from a catholic background and especially if you have never spent much time in Latin America, you would be surprised at the words, “Black Virgen”. With all the racism issues going on around the world and especially in the U.S.A. , let me tell you that Black Virgen has nothing to do with racism.
A Black Madonna or Black Virgin is a statue or painting of Mary in which she is depicted with dark skin, especially those created in Europe in the medieval period or earlier. The Black Madonnas are generally found in Catholic countries. The term refers to a type of Marian statue or painting of mainly medieval origin (12th to 15th centuries), with dark or black features. (Wikipedia).
Anchor Baptist Church with whom we collaborate here in Montevideo sent a group of 8 people to Northern Argentina to a region called Catamarca. There are few evangelical churches and it is known for its catholic traditions and worship of the Black Virgen. Well, when the team returned and shared about their experiences, they were surprised at how rooted the people are in Catholicism and the idolatry that goes with it.
I found it interesting because here I was a missionary who came from Mexico where we were accustomed to hear about the Virgen of Guadalupe (Virgen Maria in Mexico) and many other apparitions of the Virgen Maria throughout Mexico. These Uruguayans have grown up in such a secular country without much contact with the Catholicism like we were exposed to in Mexico and other places in Latin America.
It goes to show just how secular Uruguay really is compared to the rest of Latin American. Go figure.
What does the Uruguayan pursue? Vain philosophical systems, beliefs, and other self-help nonsense along with the pursuit of materialism.
What does that mean for US? We live in a dark society where the LIGHT OF JESUS can shine brightly. Therefore, we are shine likes stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life (Philippians 1:15-16).