Nuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro

PerpetualNuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro

Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, Our Lady of Perpetual Help

The feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help is celebrated on June 27

Our Mother of Perpetual Help is a title for the Virgin Mary as well as the icon in a Byzantine painting. The date of the painting is not known but believed to be between the 13th to 15th century. The original painting now hangs in Rome with copies and devotees world wide.

The image is painted on a walnut panel and thought to be created on the island of Crete; the main location of imported icons during the middle ages.

In the painting the Virgin wears a dark red dress and blue mantle and veil. The Archangel Michael is to her left carrying a sponge and lance foretelling of Christ’s crucifixion. Archangel Gabriel is on the left with the cross and nails. Unique to this painting is that Mary is looking towards the audience with infant Jesus looking frightened by the tools of his impending crucifixion.

Attributes

In 1499 a plaque in Saint Matthews church in Rome speaks of the legend where the painting was stolen by a Crete merchant who then set ail for Rome. A strong storm hit the boat and the merchant brought forward the painting and the sailors and passengers prayed for their safety. They arrived safely in Rome but the merchant fell ill and in his dying wish asked another merchant that the painting be taken to a church and venerated.

The painting did not move so easily. The second merchants wife did not want to give up the painting and hung it in her home until the Virgin Mary appeared to the merchant’s daughter and instructed her to return the painting to the church. March 27 1499 the painting was transferred to the church.

In 1866 Pope Pius IX gave the original icon to the Redemptorist order and expressed the sentiment that She be known to the world. Thousands of copies of the picture have been distributed and shrines, chapels and churches built in her name. She is revered from Hattie where she is credited with stopping a smallpox epidemic to Poland, Singapore, the US and Latin America.

In Mexico, the first the Cathedral; of Morelia in Michoacán first received a copy of the painting. The first alter dedicated to her was the Church of San Diego. Mexico now has numerous churches named after or dedicated to Nuestra Señora del Perpetuo Socorro; Mexico City, Puebla and many other larger cities. In the Riviera Nayarit, the church in Rincon de Guayabitos is named after and celebrates the patroness from June 19 to 27.

She does not “compete” with our Lady of Guadalupe, rather she is venerated with her in harmony.

Prayer to Our Mother of Perpetual Help

O Mother of Perpetual Help! With the greatest of confidence I approach you to implore your aid.

You have seen the wounds of your Son and His blood shed for our salvation. You know how He desires our salvation. Because of this, I kneel before you and beseech you to obtain for me the mercy of which I stand in such great need.

0 Mary, most amiable among women, obtain the favor I seek from Jesus, the source of all good. Here, state intention. 0 Mother of Perpetual Help, you desire our salvation more than we ourselves do. Your Son has given you to be our mother, and you have chosen for yourself the name: Mother of Perpetual Help.

I do not trust in my own merits, but in your powerful intercession. I trust in your goodness and in your motherly love. For the love that you have for Jesus, your Son, and my Savior, for the love of the souls faithful to you, and for the sake of your love for my soul, obtain for me all the graces and favors I ask of you. Amen.

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