'Wet,' thanks God ...
The other side is the answer…’
‘Wet’ Mexican song of ‘La Maldita vecindad’
‘The other side is the answer’ is a recurring phrase among Latinos who take on the adventure going to the United States. In fact, today being a migrant traveling to the United States has become a virtual university for many, who every year following the footsteps of their parents, grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, etc.
However, not as something that has become a practice in nineteenth-century, migrants have put aside their beliefs and put all their trust in saints. In the case of Mexico, each zone or village has its patron saint, who is the guardian angel who will accompany the migrants on their journey. Among the most important are:
Santo Toribio: Probably the most popular saint among migrants. His history begins with his murder. Santo Toribio was a priest and he was allegedly attacked by the federal army in the Cristero War. Migrants pray to him because he was on the opposite side of the border so it is believed that he really understands. So great is the worship that is offered, which today exists as a kind of branch of his sanctuary in the United States.
St. Peter the Apostle: The tradition of St. Peter the Apostle goes back many years ago. Those who pray are basically from Michoacan in Mexico. They pay their favors dangling dollars, or as the migrants call it ‘biilletes green’. Every February the money is retired and is engaged in the saint’s feast. Note that the celebration takes place in that month because it is when men start their community to the border crossing.
St. Juan Soldier: Juan Soldier is the name that is known to the Mexican military, whose name was Juan Castillo Morales. Juan Soldado was executed in Tijuana, Baja California, on February 17, 1938. He was allegedly accused of raping and murdering a girl Olga Camacho Martinez. He is revered in northwestern Mexico and southwestern United States as a saint. Those who believe in his miracles are said to have been falsely accused and that through his spiritual intercession can get help on health issues, family or facilitate border crossing for undocumented immigrants. That is why what is considered the patron saint of undocumented Mexicans.
San Miguel Archangel: Known as the angel who defeated Lucifer Guerrero with his machetito, (little sword) his followers believe he also goes to work with all migrants, as anyone who knows his devotion he has achieved a large following among Mexicans and Latinos.
Each nation has its own saint, and each immigrant has a story of who helped him or her to make it safely to the other side. Do you have a story? Who would you pray to if you were going to cross to the other side?