On the feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptisit and as part of the Pilgrimage for Christian Culture, a Missa Cantata according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite was offered at the National Shrine of the Little Flower. This was the second time that such a Mass took place at the Shrine since Summorum Pontificum was issued in 2007 and the first time in more than 40 years that such a Mass took place in the St. Therese Chapel.
For the next few days, I will be posting a series of devotional posts on Our Mother of Perpetual Help. Monday, June 27 is the feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help (in some calendars).
I will share with all of you the history of the devotion and some stories of special graces obtained through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother under this title.
At St. Josaphat we hold devotions in honor of Our Mother of Perpetual Help on most Mondays of the year (if Mass is not a High Mass or a Requiem) following our weekly 7:00 PM Low Mass.
I hope that those of you who practice this devotion and/or attend the Monday evening devotions will be moved to persevere in your devotion to Mary under this title.
I hope that those who do not yet know of this devotion and/or have not yet come to our Monday services, will be moved to do so and entrust their needs to the powerful intercession of the Blessed Virgin.
History Of The Picture
The original- picture, just described, was venerated for many years in the Island of Crete (now called Candia), when upon an invasion by the Turks, about 400 years ago, it was taken away by a pious merchant of that Island to escape profanation. Having been the means of enlisting the power of the Mother of God during a violent storm which occurred on the voyage, a landing was finally made at Ostia, near Rome. At Rome, by a clear manifestation of God’s will, the picture was to remain. The pious merchant, falling grievously ill, and feeling death’s approach, summoned his host and friend, and exacting from him a strict promise that he would have the picture set up for veneration in one of the churches of Rome, he confided the precious treasure to his care, and then breathed his last. Now become manifest the wondrous ways of God. The wife of the man who had the holy picture confided to him, conceiving a strong natural affection for the Madonna, deaf to her husband’s representations, finally prevailed upon him to disregard his promise and retain the picture. Three different times the Blessed Mother appeared in a dream to the unhappy man to remind him of his obligation. Affrighted, he related these occurrences to his wife, who only laughed at his credulity. A fourth time Our Blessed Lady appeared, and said to him in a tone of great severity: “I have now warned thee three times, but in vain,—I see there is no other means of leaving thy house, than that thou be first carried out of it.” Very soon after the man died.
The husband’s death seems to have been no warning to the obstinate widow. A new warning was at hand. One day her daughter, a young innocent girl, came running to her, saying: “Mother, I have just seen, in our house, oh, such a beautiful Lady, who said to me, ‘Go tell your mother and your grandfather that the ‘ Mother of Perpetual Help’ (for the Blessed Virgin gave herself this sweet title) ‘wishes her picture to be set up for public veneration in one of the churches in Rome.’” The mother, deeply moved, was about to comply. But a wicked woman of the neighborhood, hearing of the mother’s determination, violently opposed the plan, and at the same time insulted and blaspemed Our Blessed Lady. Instant retribution followed. She was stricken down with mortal illness, but repentant and confessing her crime, was permitted to touch the holy picture, when she was instantly cured. The evident miracle conquered the widow’s obstinacy. But now the question presented itself: “To which of the three hundred churches of Rome shall the picture be given?” Our Blessed Lady herself graciously deigned to answer this question, by appearing a second time to the child and saying to her: “I desire to have my home between my beloved Church of St. Mary Major, and that of my dear adopted son John (St. John Lateran).” Between these two Basilicas stood the Church of St. Matthew, at that time in charge of the religious of the Augustinian Order. To the Prior, then, of these religious the Picture was given.
To be continued….
This history was taken from the book: Leaves from the history of St. Alphonsus’ Church, St. Louis, MO., 1875: http://books.google.com/books?id=ar8_AAAAYAAJ&pg=PA53&dq=perpetual+help+devotion&hl=en&ei=rFoBTqrsKqPd0QHd_bTRDg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CC0Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=perpetual%20help%20devotion&f=false
The following information is taken from the pilgrimage website.
We believe that ordinary lay Catholics can and should work together to transform our culture.
After 9:00 a.m. Mass onn Friday, June 24th, the Solemnity of St. John the Baptist, a group of young adult pilgrims will set out from St. Vincent de Paul Parish, Pontiac, MI, and will walk and pray for Christian Culture as we travel a pilgrimage route along Woodward Avenue toward the Detroit River. Friday night we will stay at the National Shrine of the Little Flower in Royal Oak, where a Traditional Latin Mass will be celebrated for the Feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist. Saturday morning, additional pilgrims will join us for the walk through the remaining inner-ring suburbs and on into Detroit, where we will celebrate the External Solemnity of Corpus Christi. At the conclusion of the pilgrimage, there will be party appropriate to such a high feast day.
For part of the pilgrimage, a musician plans to join us and lead us in song – along the way we will have times for singing and for public prayer as well as times for private prayer and pleasant conversation. While we are still waiting for final confirmation, it is our hope that one or more priests will accompany parts of the pilgrimage and will hear confessions.
More Information visit: http://genchrist.net/pilgrimage/
This pilgrimage was also featured on New Liturgical Movement: http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/2011/06/young-adult-pilgrimages-in-north.html
The Holy Face devotion is another wonderful way for the faithful to offer Reparation to Our Lord. It is also another way by which special graces both spiritual and temporal may obtained from God. To learn more about this devotion visit: http://www.holyfacedevotion.com
You are invited to offer up these special prayers in honor of the Holy Face for the needs of our Parish and Tridentine Mass Community of St. Josaphat. Please also pray for our Cluster and our Tridentine Community in Windsor. By offering the Holy Face to the Eternal Father, you can help bring down many blessings both spiritual and temporal upon our communities. Please also pray for the Archdiocese of Detroit as well. Offer these prayers for your own personal intentions needs too. Pray these prayers after your daily Rosary or after Mass. If you cannot do all the prayers presented below, pray at least The Golden Arrow.
Prayers in Honor of the Holy Face
I salute Thee, I adore Thee, and I love Thee, O adorable Face of Jesus, my Beloved, noble seal of the Divinity; with all the powers of my soul, I apply myself to Thee and most humbly pray Thee to imprint the features of Thy Divine likeness on my heart. Amen.
The Golden Arrow
May the most holy, the most unutterable, the most Sacred Name of God be praised, blessed, adored and glorified and loved in heaven, on earth and under the earth by all creatures and by the Most adorable Heart of Jesus in the Most adorable Sacrament of the Altar!
Prayers of the Holy Man of Tours
O my Savior. Jesus, at the sight of Thy most Holy Face disfigured by suffering, at the sight of Thy most Sacred Heart, so full of love, I cry with St. Augustine: “Lord Jesus, imprint on my heart Thy sacred wounds, so that I may read therein sorrow and love; sorrow, to endure every sorrow for Thee; love, to despise every love for Thee.
O adorable Face of my Jesus, so mercifully bowed upon the tree of the Cross on the day of Thy Passion, for the salvation of men, now inclined in Thy pity towards us, poor sinners; cast upon us a look of compassion, and receive us to the kiss of peace. Amen
O Lord Jesus Christ, in presenting ourselves before Thy adorable Face, to beg of Thee the graces we most need, we beseech Thee, to give us above all things the disposition of never refusing at any time to do what Thou requirest of us by Thy commandments and divine inspirations. Amen
Be merciful to us, O my God, and reject not our prayers when we call on Thy Name in the midst of our afflictions, and seek Thy adorable Face with loving hearts. Amen.
O Almighty and Eternal God, look upon the Face of Thy Son, Jesus. We present it to Thee with confidence to implore Thy pardon. The All-Merciful Advocate opens His Mouth to plead our cause: hearken to His voice, behold His tears, O God, and, through His infinite merits, listen to Him when He intercedes for us, poor sinners. Amen.”
Prayer of Pope Pius IX
O my Jesus, cast a look of mercy on us: turn Thy Face towards each of us, as Thou didst to Veronica. not that we may see it with our bodily eyes, for this we do not deserve, but turn it towards our hearts, so that remembering Thee, we may ever draw from this fountain of strength the vigour necessary to bear the combats of life. Amen.
Our Lady of Czestochowa, pray for us
St. Anne, patroness of our archdiocese, pray for us
St. Josaphat, our patron, pray for us
St. Philomena, pray for us