Santa Marian Kamalen
Every year on December 8
You can bet my family and I would go
To the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica
To attend the procession which would last for hours.
And though my feet would ache from all the walking
My faith in God remains strong and always will.
According to the legend
Santa Marian Kamalen floated
Into the shores of Malesso
Escorted by two crabs with lit votive candles.
It is said that her travel in the waters is a miracle
Since she is made of ironwood, which does not float.
She was brought in by a fisherman
Who presented her to the Spanish Governor.
It is said that the fisherman drew near to the statue
But it drifted away until he fully clothed himself.
The statue was then housed in a proa shed or camarin
Until she moved to her new home
At the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica.
Santa Marian Kamalen,
Patroness of the island,
Who has survived typhoons, earthquakes, and WWII,
Stands watch over the people of Guam.
And my participation in honoring Santa Marian Kamalen
Will remain a tradition of mine
For as long as I’m able to walk, talk and sing
I will continue to attend the procession,
As well as pray and sing wholeheartedly.
© mnrivera and ltgumataotao
*Santa Marian Kamalen: Our Lady of Camarin
Source: Our Native Daughters’ Reflection of Guam and Its People by Dr. Matilda Naputi Rivera and Lois Taitano Gumataotao