Pope celebrates mass at Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City

Sunday, February 14, 2016
Pope visits Mexico
Pope Francis arrived in Mexico on Friday.

MEXICO CITY (WLS) -- Pope Francis spent his first full day in Mexico in the country's capital, preaching a message of humility and setting the stage for what's to come for the rest of his trip.

The Pope arrived on Friday for the six-day visit.

On Saturday, the Pope celebrated mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, which is an important part of Catholics of Mexican heritage because it's where Catholics believe the evangelization of the Western hemisphere began.

Outside the Basilica and on the surrounding streets, the crowds gathered for hours waiting to see Pope Francis who arrived in the popemobile.

"I feel deep in my heart, and I feel like I'm going to cry because there's not too many times like this one," said Luis Escamilla, of Crestwood.

People came from miles around Mexico, the region and even the Chicago area, just for the chance to be here with Pope Francis and to celebrate mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Orquiza family, of Chicago's Southwest Side, got a prime front-row spot to see the Pope on Saturday.

"My family was visiting here, and my husband and I decided to bring our son, he's only six months just for the weekend, just to see the pope," said Yuri Orquiza.

"For Christmas we said we're not going to buy each other anything and my wife, said it would be fun to go see the Pope and I'm like, 'You know what? Let's go, let's do it. Let's go," said Jose Orquiza.

Steps away from the busy crowds, Jorge Davila worked his taco stand making burritos, tacos de carne asada, al pastor and cafecito, hoping that the Pope brings monetary blessings.

"These are the good days when those people come," Davila said through a translator.

Earlier Saturday, the Pope had strong words while talking to his fellow bishops in Mexico, urging them to fight the drug trade. He said the cartels are those

"who stand before God with their hands drenched in blood... pockets filled with sordid money."

Pope Francis also told the group to reach out to immigrants, noting that it's not always easy for them. He is expected to use similar language on Wednesday when he makes his most politically charged stop in Ciudad Juarez, near the Mexican-U.S. border.