Thank you for visiting the Our Lady of Miracles Festa History Homepage
The Shrine of Our Lady of Miracles
(Formerly Our Lady of Miracles Church)
By Kathryn Castro Maffei

2014 Bodo de Leite was held on Saturday, September 13, 2014.
The theme was "A Life of Faith." There were donkeys, camels, and horses.
There were townspeople, floats and music. It was magnificent.
In this photo show video, Antonio Isidro Cardoso sings
"Vamos Entrando na Casa de Deus to Kathryn Maffei's arrangement.

This is a photoshow video of Novenas 3 through 7.

Pictures of the Queens, Attendants, and Presidents after the first two Novenas

2014 Shrine of Our Lady of Miracles is beautifully decorated for the OLM Festa.

Please click here to view the Our Lady of Miracles Facebook Page:

The Our Lady of Miracles Festa was 75 Years Old in 2011.
This OLM Website was created in 1998
and has had over 150,000 visits worldwide.

I created the Our Lady of Miracles Festa History website
because the Festa was a part of my life ever since
I was a little girl. My parents were Presidents of the Festa twice.

I have a great devotion to Our Lady of Miracles.
I also have a great love for the music of the OLM Festa,
In 1998, I produced a CD of Our Lady of Miracles Music.
At my mother's urging for her love of the rosary,
I also produced a CD of the Portuguese Rosary and Portuguese Music.
I hope the OLM Portuguese Festa Music will never be forgotten.

Please check out the links at the bottom of this page for
further information about The Our Lady of Miracles Society's history.

Thank you for visiting the OLM Festa History Homepage,
Kathryn Castro Maffei

You can see all Our Lady of Miracles Videos on

Click here for Our Lady of Miracles Videos on YouTube:

Gustine, California


Steeped in tradition, the OLM Celebration
welcomes thousands

A long-standing celebration of faith, one of the oldest
in the United States, continues every year in September
when Our Lady of Miracles hosts its annual Festa.
Thousands of visitors fill the little town of Gustine in a
celebration that was brought here from the little island
of Terceira in the Azores Islands. It has been a part of
Gustine and the lives of Portuguese people here
for over 60 years. Two common bonds are shared by
those who travel to Gustine for the event. One is
a love of the Portuguese heritage and customs they
share; the second is a deep faith in
Our Lady of Miracles. Many of the traditions
of the OLM Celebration reflect both aspects of
culture and faith.

An explanation how some of the events
historically originated at the Festa
such as the queens and sopas are
explained by Olivia Amaral:
"How the tradition started for a Festa in the
old days was that St. Isabel's husband, King
Deniz, and their son were at war against each
other. St. Isabel was very devoted to the Sacred
Heart of Jesus. During the war, her people
were starving and she would smuggle bread in
her cloak to give to them against her husband's
wishes. One day, her husband, the King, caught
her and asked what was in her cloak and she said
it was roses. He demanded to see them and when
she open her cloak, the bread had turned into a
bouquet of roses. This was a miracle by God.
That is why we always see her statue with the
roses falling from her cloak.
She is always dressed in pink robes.
Also, during the war, she vowed that she would not
wear her crown until her husband and son made peace.
On that day, she would invite all the royalty
from surrounding areas to join in with her in a
procession to their Church for her to receive
her crown once again. She then put on a banquet
for everyone, royalty and poor alike. This is
where the tradition of having queens from
surrounding area's fits in and the simple
meal of soup, bread and meat."

Monsignor Myron Cotta
surrounded by burning candles
during the Our Lady of Miracles
Novena Mass celebrating Mary's birthday

Vicar General, Myron Cotta with Pope John Paul II
as Bishop John Steinbock of Fresno Diocese looks on


Kathryn Maffei Story in The Portuguese Tribune
Subscribe to the Portuguese Journal

The Legend of Our Lady of Miracles:

All about the OLM Society:

Bode de Leite (Cow Parade):

Newly Renovated GPS Hall:

Gustine Adopts Angra, Azores as Sister City:

Pictures of 2002 Festa:

2003 Pictures of OLM Parade of Queens:

2003 Pictures of OLM Festa Bullfights:

Pictures of 2004 Festa:

2005 OLM Novena Pictures

2009 OLM Pictures & Videos:


I dedicate this song
"Hymn of Our Lady of Fatima"
To My Father, Mathew M. Castro
(his favorite OLM song and
Twice President of OLM Festa)
This song is played in the
Grand Parade on Sunday
This version is played by
Kathryn Castro Maffei (Webmaster)
The Shrine of Our Lady of Miracles
370 Linden Avenue
Gustine, CA 95322
(from The Collection of OLM Hymns CD)

Map of Our Lady of Miracles Catholic School and Church: