Mary of Jesus of Ágreda - Mystical bilocation and effect on missionaries
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Between 1620 and 1623, Mary of Jesus reported that she was often "transported by the aid of the angels" to settlements of a people called Jumanos. The Jumano Indians of New Spain (what is today Texas and New Mexico) had long been requesting missionaries, possibly hoping for protection from the Apaches. Eventually a mission led by the Franciscan Friar Juan de Salas visited them in 1629.
The abbess reported further but less frequent visits afterwards, all while she physically remained in the monastery at Ágreda. They thus are considered bilocations, an event where a person is, or seems to be, in two places at the same time.
Before sending the friars, Father Alonzo de Benavides, Custodian of New Mexico, asked the natives why they were so eager to be baptized. They said they had been visited by a Lady in Blue who had told them to ask the fathers for help, pointing to a painting of a nun in a blue habit and saying she was dressed like that but was a beautiful young girl.
The Jumanos visiting Isleta indicated that the Lady in Blue had visited them in the area now known as the Salinas National Monument, south of modern-day Mountainair, New Mexico, about 65 miles south of Albuquerque.
At the same time, Fray Esteban de Perea brought Benavides an inquiry from Sor María's confessor in Spain asking whether there was any evidence that she had visited the Jumanos.
As reports of Mary's mystical excursions to the New World proliferated, the Inquisition took notice, although she was not proceeded against with severity, perhaps because of her long written relationship with the Spanish king.
Accounts of Mary's mystical apparitions in the American Southwest, as well as inspiring passages in Mystical City of God, so stirred 17th and 18th century missionaries that they credited her in their own life's work, making her an integral part of the colonial history of the United States.
The source of the experienceMary of Jesus of Ágreda
Concepts, symbols and science items
Activities and commonsteps
OverloadsActivity not known
5. Colahan, Clark A. The Visions of Sor Maria de Agreda: Writing Knowledge and Power (University of Arizona Press, 1994)
7. Plocheck, Robert (2005). "Franciscan Missionaries in Texas before 1690". Texas Almanac. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 2012-07-22.
8. Abernethy, Francis Edward (1 July 1994). Legendary Ladies of Texas. University of North Texas Press. pp. 9ff. ISBN 978-0-929398-75-4.
9. Palou, Francisco. Life and Apostolic Labors of the Venerable Father Junípero Serra, Translated by C. Scott Williams (Pasadena, CA: George Wharton James, 1913)