Sunday, September 24, 2017

Anybody Home?

I had written this some time ago ... not even sure when ... but just came across it again and it's TIMELY. If you don't care about this .... YOU SHOULD!

Oh for about a couple decades now at least, I've had a pet peeve .. spoken to only a handful of trusted friends .. something that really rubs me the wrong way and gets my dander up. There's a FIX for it .. but are we UP TO IT? To we have the GUTS to even SUGGEST IT? Time for fence sitting is LONG PAST. We need to begin getting our house in order and in my mind, the very first thing we need to do is:

PUT THE MASTER BACK WHERE HE BELONGS!!

Yep ... I'm talking about the Savior of the world, our Eucharistic Lord, JESUS! It was WRONG to move Him off to the side away from the main focus. Isn't that WHY we go to Church because we BELIEVE IN THE DIVINE PRESENCE OF THE EUCHARIST? Sit down and REALLY think about this. If you don't believe that Jesus is truly present in the Eucharist, you're not even CATHOLIC. He didn't say this is a representation of My Body and Blood ...

He said "THIS IS MY BODY, THIS IS MY BLOOD."

This has bothered me for SO long now ... Michael brought it to the fore front again and now I'm on a mission! We need .. WE ALL NEED to band together. Things are going to get tough enough here more quickly than we'd like. We need to be sure where we stand because those still sitting on the fence will soon find themselves sitting on what's left of their brains *ahem*. We need to follow Michael's advice and IN CHARITY do whatever it takes to get Jesus put BACK front and center as the MAIN FOCUS as it should be .. where He BELONGS!

Form groups, write letters, have talks and meetings ... if nothing is done and it's a closed issue, well then, I'd take my soul elsewhere to be nourished for the upcoming battle. It's too important NOT to have Him first in all things now and (right after the place in your heart), that begins with the altar in your parish.

If you can't get anywhere with your parish, contact the diocese or the arch diocese .. if you can't get anywhere with them .. well then you need to go where Jesus IS honored, respected and given the proper place due His DIVINITY! .... PERIOD!

Father Robert Altier: On The Reality And Action Of Demons!

Would You Like To Learn More About The Differences Between The Different Kinds And The Different Actions Of The Devil’s Minions? Then Read The Following!
We need to speak about reality of the evil spirits. I thought it might be appropriate to explain that with a little bit more detail so that we would understand exactly what it is we are working against.

Cardinal Spirits

There are spirits that are broken up into different kinds of categories. There are, for instance, the spirits that are called “cardinal spirits”. Cardinal spirits are the ones that we get in because of repeated sin. If we do the same thing over and over and over again, we open ourselves up to allow the devil in. We do not become possessed by these things, but rather we are oppressed by them. And what we need to do is work them back out by changing the habits that we have and changing our vices into virtues.

Ministering Spirits

There are what are called “ministering spirits”. Ministering spirits are huge things from the higher order of angels. They are the ones that live within the wounds that are inflicted upon us from the time that we are quite young, when there are traumatic things that happen in our lives when we are young (before 12 years old). These are the great, big things that get wrapped around our personality, and because of that, they are very, very difficult to even be able to recognize or to get rid of. The problem with ministering spirits is, first of all, they are exceedingly intelligent, which is why they go after little children rather than adults because their arrogance will not allow them to do anything else. They try to hide behind the personality of the people. These are the ones that will cause pride, selfishness, anger, and also fear. So when we see these kinds of problems in our lives, these are things that are rooted deep, deep within ourselves. They are in the wounds that were inflicted when we were young, and the only way to be able to get rid of them is to get inside and be able to address the woundedness, to heal those wounds that are there through forgiveness, through working through the various things in prayer. Slowly, we will be able to push these things away.

Occult Spirits

There are also occult spirits. These are the things that get in through occult practices. They can be sent or they can be summoned. For instance, if we allow ourselves to be involved in any kind of occult things: playing with a ouija board, going to a palm reader or to a psychic or somebody like that, getting ourselves into any kind of satanic thing. That is how we are going to get these occult spirits. But they can also be sent by somebody. That is, they can be sent along with a curse. They can be sent by someone who is in the occult, someone who does not like you very much, to cause you lots of problems. These are particularly vile creatures. Because they are occult spirits, they are not very easy to get rid of because they are nasty and tenacious and they fight back, whereas the other ones we can push out. But these are going to cause lots of problems as we try to get rid of them.

Familial Spirits

Then there are other categories that still fit under these three general headings. There are familial spirits, which are within the family and get passed down; for instance, if there is someone who is in the Masons. The Masons are the lowest form of human life on the face of the earth. They are an occult religion, and they are the most despicable of human beings. In order to move up the ladder, they actually offer their children and their grandchildren and generations down the line in order for their own selfish ambitions to be met. So there are curses that are put upon the families and upon the children, and those get passed down from generation to generation.

Generational Spirits


There are others that are also generational spirits, familial spirits. One of these, for instance, is incest. That is a generational and familial spirit; it gets passed down from generation to generation. You see the same problems within the family that get passed along. We wonder how it is possible that this can happen generation after generation; it is because of the spirit that is there. There are familiar spirits. That is a different spirit that has a familiarity with you because it was already there and the wound is not necessarily fully healed, so it can come in because there is a woundedness that is already present for it. And there are retaliating spirits. There are all kinds of different ways that these things can get in, but it is just to understand what it is that we are working against.

When we think about the struggles that we have, Saint James tells us, for instance, that we have these wars within our members and so on, but the reality is that the war, as Saint Paul tells us, is not against flesh and blood; it is against the principalities and powers of darkness and the rulers of the high places. It is against Satan and his minions, and we need to be clear. We do have our own weaknesses because of our own sins, but the fact of the matter is it is not merely just our little human weakness – it is our human weakness being compounded by something which is a spiritual problem. And in order to deal with a spiritual problem, you have to deal with it in a spiritual way.

Our Battle Is Not Against Flesh And Blood

So again, it is a matter of how we are going to combat these things. Remember Jesus said, “This type (of demon) can only be gotten rid of by prayer and fasting.” If you really want to be able to make headway on some of these things, you need to pray, you need to take on some penances, and you need to face the things directly. It is all of these things. It is not just a matter of saying, “If I pray it will go away.” It is not just a matter of saying, “If I try to change my habits it will make a difference.” These things will help all by themselves; but if we really want to be able to get rid of the problems in our lives, it is going to require all three of these things: to pray, to do penance, and to work at making the changes that we need, because we have our part to do but it is still a matter of recognizing where the trouble is coming from. Not merely just within our own selves and within our own weaknesses, but by the spirits that are there.

Three Levels Of Spirits

There are also three levels of these things. There are oppressive spirits. Those are the ones that all of us deal with. They are the things that are there causing us the trouble. There are obsessive spirits. That is where a person gets obsessed with occult things. And then there are possessive spirits. That is when a person opens himself up to actually be taken over, to become possessed. That is the one that is very, very rare. We have to understand that just because someone is dealing with spiritual things, which all of us are, it does not mean they are possessed. In fact, it is very rare that someone would be possessed.

I make these distinctions for you simply so you can understand why we struggle the way that we do in our spiritual lives, what it is that we are fighting against, and to help us understand that just because we are struggling against the devil and his minions does not mean that we are possessed and it does not mean that we have given ourselves over to Satan. Some of the things we are completely innocent of: the generational things, the ministering spirits, and so on. The fact is they are still there, and so we have to do our part to work against them. Look seriously at what is going on within your own heart and soul, and make a choice to really fight against them by prayer, by fasting, and by turning directly against the areas of weakness within yourself to throw out the devil.

by: Father Robert Altier

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Mother Teresa & Charity : Hand in Hand

Today the Missionaries of Charity and their friends will be celebrating the
feast day of St. Teresa of Calcutta.
September 5th is the anniversary of her death, and at present is acknowledged
as her feast day.

“By blood, I am Albanian. By citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun. As to my calling, I belong to the world. As to my heart, I belong entirely to the Heart of Jesus. ”Small of stature, rocklike in faith, Mother Teresa of Calcutta was entrusted with the mission of proclaiming God’s thirsting love for humanity, especially for the poorest of the poor. “God still loves the world and He sends you and me to be His love and His compassion to the poor.” She was a soul filled with the light of Christ, on fire with love for Him and burning with one desire: “to quench His thirst for love and for souls.”

This luminous messenger of God’s love was born on 26 August 1910 in Skopje, a city situated at the crossroads of Balkan history. The youngest of the children born to Nikola and Drane Bojaxhiu, she was baptised Gonxha Agnes, received her First Communion at the age of five and a half and was confirmed in November 1916. From the day of her First Holy Communion, a love for souls was within her. Her father’s sudden death when Gonxha was about eight years old left the family in financial straits. Drane raised her children firmly and lovingly, greatly influencing her daughter’s character and vocation. Gonxha’s religious formation was further assisted by the vibrant Jesuit parish of the Sacred Heart in which she was much involved.

At the age of eighteen, moved by a desire to become a missionary, Gonxha left her home in September 1928 to join the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, known as the Sisters of Loreto, in Ireland. There she received the name Sister Mary Teresa after St. Thérèse of Lisieux. In December, she departed for India, arriving in Calcutta on 6 January 1929. After making her First Profession of Vows in May 1931, Sister Teresa was assigned to the Loreto Entally community in Calcutta and taught at St. Mary’s School for girls. On 24 May 1937, Sister Teresa made her Final Profession of Vows, becoming, as she said, the “spouse of Jesus” for “all eternity.” From that time on she was called Mother Teresa. She continued teaching at St. Mary’s and in 1944 became the school’s principal. A person of profound prayer and deep love for her religious sisters and her students, Mother Teresa’s twenty years in Loreto were filled with profound happiness. Noted for her charity, unselfishness and courage, her capacity for hard work and a natural talent for organization, she lived out her consecration to Jesus, in the midst of her companions, with fidelity and joy.

On 10 September 1946 during the train ride from Calcutta to Darjeeling for her annual retreat, Mother Teresa received her “inspiration," her “call within a call.” On that day, in a way she would never explain, Jesus’ thirst for love and for souls took hold of her heart and the desire to satiate His thirst became the driving force of her life. Over the course of the next weeks and months, by means of interior locutions and visions, Jesus revealed to her the desire of His heart for “victims of love” who would “radiate His love on souls.” “Come be My light,” He begged her. “I cannot go alone.” He revealed His pain at the neglect of the poor, His sorrow at their ignorance of Him and His longing for their love. He asked Mother Teresa to establish a religious community, Missionaries of Charity, dedicated to the service of the poorest of the poor. Nearly two years of testing and discernment passed before Mother Teresa received permission to begin. On August 17, 1948, she dressed for the first time in a white, blue-bordered sari and passed through the gates of her beloved Loreto convent to enter the world of the poor.

After a short course with the Medical Mission Sisters in Patna, Mother Teresa returned to Calcutta and found temporary lodging with the Little Sisters of the Poor. On 21 December she went for the first time to the slums. She visited families, washed the sores of some children, cared for an old man lying sick on the road and nursed a woman dying of hunger and TB. She started each day in communion with Jesus in the Eucharist and then went out, rosary in her hand, to find and serve Him in “the unwanted, the unloved, the uncared for.” After some months, she was joined, one by one, by her former students.

On 7 October 1950 the new congregation of the Missionaries of Charity was officially established in the Archdiocese of Calcutta. By the early 1960s, Mother Teresa began to send her Sisters to other parts of India. The Decree of Praise granted to the Congregation by Pope Paul VI in February 1965 encouraged her to open a house in Venezuela. It was soon followed by foundations in Rome and Tanzania and, eventually, on every continent. Starting in 1980 and continuing through the 1990s, Mother Teresa opened houses in almost all of the communist countries, including the former Soviet Union, Albania and Cuba.

In order to respond better to both the physical and spiritual needs of the poor, Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity Brothers in 1963, in 1976 the contemplative branch of the Sisters, in 1979 the Contemplative Brothers, and in 1984 the Missionaries of Charity Fathers. Yet her inspiration was not limited to those with religious vocations. She formed the Co-Workers of Mother Teresa and the Sick and Suffering Co-Workers, people of many faiths and nationalities with whom she shared her spirit of prayer, simplicity, sacrifice and her apostolate of humble works of love. This spirit later inspired the Lay Missionaries of Charity. In answer to the requests of many priests, in 1981 Mother Teresa also began the Corpus Christi Movement for Priests as a “little way of holiness” for those who desire to share in her charism and spirit.

During the years of rapid growth the world began to turn its eyes towards Mother Teresa and the work she had started. Numerous awards, beginning with the Indian Padmashri Award in 1962 and notably the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, honoured her work, while an increasingly interested media began to follow her activities. She received both prizes and attention “for the glory of God and in the name of the poor.”

The whole of Mother Teresa’s life and labor bore witness to the joy of loving, the greatness and dignity of every human person, the value of little things done faithfully and with love, and the surpassing worth of friendship with God. But there was another heroic side of this great woman that was revealed only after her death. Hidden from all eyes, hidden even from those closest to her, was her interior life marked by an experience of a deep, painful and abiding feeling of being separated from God, even rejected by Him, along with an ever-increasing longing for His love. She called her inner experience, “the darkness.”  The “painful night” of her soul, which began around the time she started her work for the poor and continued to the end of her life, led Mother Teresa to an ever more profound union with God. Through the darkness she mystically participated in the thirst of Jesus, in His painful and burning longing for love, and she shared in the interior desolation of the poor.

During the last years of her life, despite increasingly severe health problems, Mother Teresa continued to govern her Society and respond to the needs of the poor and the Church. By 1997, Mother Teresa’s Sisters numbered nearly 4,000 members and were established in 610 foundations in 123 countries of the world. In March 1997 she blessed her newly-elected successor as Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity and then made one more trip abroad. After meeting Pope John Paul II for the last time, she returned to Calcutta and spent her final weeks receiving visitors and instructing her Sisters. On 5 September Mother Teresa’s earthly life came to an end. She was given the honor of a state funeral by the Government of India and her body was buried in the Mother House of the Missionaries of Charity. Her tomb quickly became a place of pilgrimage and prayer for people of all faiths, rich and poor alike. Mother Teresa left a testament of unshakable faith, invincible hope and extraordinary charity. Her response to Jesus’ plea, “Come be My light,” made her a Missionary of Charity, a “mother to the poor,” a symbol of compassion to the world, and a living witness to the thirsting love of God.

Less than two years after her death, in view of Mother Teresa’s widespread reputation of holiness and the favours being reported, Pope John Paul II permitted the opening of her Cause of Canonization. On 20 December 2002 he approved the decrees of her heroic virtues and miracles.


"I thirst for you" composed by Saint Teresa of Calcutta; read by Father Larry Richards

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

The Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary on August 15 has been a part of Christian faith-tradition from the earliest centuries. This feast emphasizes the universal dimensions of Mary’s role in God’s plan of salvation. We do not celebrate her exaltation in the sense of a removal from us, but as the fulfillment of what we all are called to be.

In 1950, Pope Pius XII defined Mary's Assumption into heaven as a dogma of Roman Catholicism: "the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heaven." The proclamation of this dogma was made in the encyclical: Munificentissimus Deus. After entering heaven, Mary has remained active in the life of the Church.

This feast of Mary celebrates a special privilege of Mary, our Mother. The Assumption means that she entered into the glory of heaven not only with her soul, but also with her body. The Son of God took His Body from Mary's pure womb. It was fitting, then, that her body should be glorified as soon as her life here on earth was ended.

Now Mary is in heaven. She is Queen of heaven and earth. She is the Mother of Jesus' Church and Queen of apostles. Every time Mary asks Jesus to give us graces, He listens to her request.

After the resurrection from the dead, we, too, can go to heaven with our bodies. If we use our bodies now to do good, those  bodies will share in our heavenly reward.

After the resurrection, our bodies will be perfect. They will not be subject to illness anymore. They will not need any more food and drink to keep alive. They will be able to go every place without time or effort. They will be beautiful and splendid!


Let us not forget our dear Mother!
And still go to Mass or at least watch it on TV or Internet for those that are house bound .... and PLEASE don't forget to pray your ROSARY!



"Thank you Most Pure Mother for soiling your feet on the earth again and again to bring us Jesus and to lead us to Jesus. I praise your love and mercy that flows to us through your Flame of Love directly from the Source of Divine Mercy. I thank you for never giving up on us. Lead all souls to heaven, Beloved Mother, especially those God has given us to pray for, and especially those most in need of God's mercy. Amen." ~Janet Klasson


DAILY ROSARIES PLEASE!!!!
(Along with the Chaplet of Divine Mercy & the Chaplet of Unity)
The door of MERCY  has already closed! But we can still pray for our friends and relatives that have turned lukewarm or left the Faith! Mercy will soon be over and then comes JUDGEMENT. Do you think that the centennial of Fatima, the locution that Pope Leo had, the Jubilee Year of Mercy, and all the signs in the sky are  coincidental? God put us in this place in history for a REASON. We BEST get crackin' on the main objective which is still the same as it has been always ..... " LEAD ALL SOULS TO HEAVEN"!!!!
PLEASE! Pray for the martyrs in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, India, the Ukraine and all Muslim and Communist countries! 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

August 2nd: Our Lady of the Angels (of the Portiuncula)

From the Franciscan supplement to the Divine Office:
OUR LADY OF THE ANGELS OF THE PORTIUNCULA Feast
portiuncula

Our Seraphic Father Francis in keeping with his special love for the Blessed Virgin was especially fond of the chapel of Saint Mary of the Angels known as the Portiuncula. It was here in the designs of Divine Providence that he started the Order of Friars Minor, inaugurated the Order of the Poor Clares and brought his sojourn on earth to its holy end.
In this chapel according to tradition our Holy Father obtained the famous indulgence which the Supreme Pontiffs confirmed and extended to many other churches. On ac­count of the many blessings conferred here the celebration of a liturgical feast was granted for this day which marks the anniversary of the dedication of this chapel.
+++
And St. Bonaventure wrote in the Major Life of St. Francis:  Francis had great devotion to the Queen of the world and when he saw that the church was deserted, he began to live there constantly in order to repair it. He heard that the Angels often visited it, so that it was called Saint Mary of the Angels, and he decided to stay there permanently out of reverence for the angels and love for the Mother of Christ.

He loved this spot more than any other in the world. It was here he began his religious life in a very small way; it is here he came to a happy end. When he was dying, he commended this spot above all others to the friars, because it was most dear to the Blessed Virgin.
Santa Maria degli Angeli
Santa Maria degli Angeli where
the Portiuncula is located within the Basilica
This was the place where Saint Francis founded his Order by divine inspiration and it was divine providence which led him to repair three churches before he founded the Order and began to preach the Gospel. This meant that he progressed from material things to more spiritual achievements, from lesser to greater, in due order, and it gave a prophetic indication of what he would accomplish later.

As he was living there by the church of Our Lady, Francis prayed to her who had conceived the Word, full of grace and truth, begging her insistently and with tears to become his advocate. Then he was granted the true spirit of the Gospel by the intercession of the Mother of mercy and he brought it to fruition. He embraced the Mother of Our Lord Jesus with indescribable love because, as he said, it was she who made the Lord of majesty our brother, and through her we found mercy. After Christ, he put all his trust in her and took her as his patroness for himself and his friars.

A Beautiful Gift : Portiuncula Indulgence
 Background on this Grace: Everyone knows how special the Church of The Portiuncula in Assisi was to St. Francis. It is there that he began his service to Christ and His Church. It is there that he was called to rebuild the Church. It is there that he made humble service, obedience, love, and dedication to Our Lord and Our Lady the cornerstones of his unique and inspiring life. It was even there that St. Clare, the spiritual daughter of St. Francis, received her call, lost her locks of hair to the scissors of Francis, and gained her place in the service of God and in the list of great saints.

During one of his many conversations with Jesus and Our Blessed Mother. Francis requested and received this indulgence as a measure and means of God's Divine Mercy and love for us. Upon receiving the approval of Our Lord, Francis took this cause to the Pope, Honorious III, in who finally approved as well. While the benefits of this indulgence were not taken advantage of in the days of Francis given the difficult travel and poor roads, we are given a unique and fortunate opportunity to benefit today given easier transportation.

The Indulgence Itself 

The magnitude of this indulgence is nothing less than the full remission of the punishments due to one's sins from the day of Baptism to the day one enters the church to perform the indulgence requirements!!

Conditions To Obtain The Plenary Indulgence of The Forgiveness of Assisi
(For oneself or for a departed soul)

*        Sacramental Confession to be in God's Grace (within 8 days before or after)
*        Participation in the Holy Mass and Eucharist
*        Visit to a Franciscan Church, followed by the Profession of Faith
*        Say the Our Father
*        A Prayer for the Pope

Indulgences as Gifts and Opportunities

Once again we see the beauty, majesty, magnitude, and Divine Mercy of God Almighty! All that Our Lord asks is that we humbly and contritely seek forgiveness, that we receive His Most Sacred Body in The Eucharist that we visit a Franciscan church and profess our faith, that we say The Our Father, and that we pray for the Pope. Despite those things on which we may not
agree with the Pope, this indulgence provides us with the opportunity to declare our eternal loyalty to preserving the Faith and not abandoning our mission and duty to be soldiers for our God.

Eventually, the Church modified the conditions and said the faithful could obtain the indulgence either on August 2nd or on the following Sunday and by going to any Catholic church with the intention of gaining this special indulgence. May we take advantage of this beautiful gift and the opportunities which it provides to approach our God in renewed contrite purity, love, appreciation, and loyalty! 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL

On July 16, the Church celebrates on the feast of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel which is symbolized by the brown scapular. The scapular, which derives its name from the Latin word scapula, meaning shoulders, is a dress which covers the shoulders. It is mentioned in the rule of Saint Benedict as worn by monks over their other dress when they were at work, and it now forms a regular part of the religious dress in the old Orders. But it is best known among Catholics as the name of two little pieces of cloth worn out of devotion to the Blessed Virgin over the shoulders, under the ordinary garb, and connected by strings. The devotion of the scapular, now almost universal in the Catholic Church, began with the Carmelites.

Our Lady promises to be a spiritual mother to those who wear the scapular. She even promises the gift of final perseverance to all who wear her sign with genuine faith in Jesus and in her powerful protection. At the hour of death, she will grant the wearer the grace to repent completely.

For more information:
Novena to Mount Carmel
Procedure for the Blessing and Investiture of the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help - Feast Day: June 27th (Begins 6/18)

Recite these prayers each day for 9 days...
Mother of Perpetual Help you comforted Jesus your Son as He faced His passion. We are now your children, called to follow Jesus in His suffering, death and rising to new life. Comfort us too and help us so to discover the power of His Spirit that we may build up His kingdom among us. When He comes again in glory, may we celebrate with joy the fullness of life with all God’s family for ever and ever. Amen.

Then Recite the following prayers...
Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be...


The novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help can be made on nineconsecutive days, or on one day each week for nine weeks. It can be made in Church with others, at home with your family or by yourself.

Novena Prayer

Dear Mother of Perpetual Help from the cross Jesus gave you to us for our Mother. You are the kindest, the most loving of all mothers. Look tenderly on us your children as we now ask you to help us in all our needs especially this one… (Pause and state your petitions) While you were on earth, dear Mother you willingly shared in the sufferings of your Son. Strengthened by your faith and confidence in the fatherly love of God you accepted the mysterious designs of His Will.  We too have our crosses and trials. Sometimes they almost crush us to the ground. Dearest Mother, share with us your abundant faith and confidence in God. Make us aware that God never ceases to love us; that He answers all our prayers in the way that is best for us.  Strengthen our hearts to carry the cross in the footsteps of your Divine Son. Help us to realize that he who shares the cross of Christ will certainly share His resurrection.  Dearest Mother, as we worry about our own problems let us not forget the needs of others. You always love others so much; help us to do the same.  Dearest Mother, help us to avoid sin which separates us from our heavenly Father and from one another. Full of trust in you, we place ourselves under the mantle of your maternal protection and confidently hope for your powerful help.
Amen. 



About the Icon

This picture has been a revered icon of hope and inspiration. For three hundred years the picture hung over the main altar in the church of St. Matthew the Apostle in Rome. People came from miles around because of the miracles attributed to this sacred icon. In 1798, the picture was hidden by the monks who fled the city of Rome to avoid being captured by Napoleon's invading armies.

The picture resurfaced years later in an Augustinian monastery chapel.
Meanwhile the Redemptorists had built the new church of San Alfonso near the site of St. Matthew's... which had been destroyed by Napoleon's invasion force. The Redemptorists learned about the picture and requested that it be returned. Pope Pius IX agreed and on April 26, 1866, the original icon was placed above the high altar in the Church of San Alfonso. 



Note in this picture how Jesus, while safely cradled in his mother’s arms, looks anxiously at St. Gabriel the Archangel, who holds the cross and nails for His Crucifixion. (St. Michael the Archangel, at left, holds the lance, spear, and the vessel of vinegar and gall for our Lord's Passion as well.) The Blessed Mother looks at us solemnly, perhaps as if in contemplation of her beloved Son’s future Passion and death for our salvation!
Remember that when we pray this novena to our Lady of Perpetual Help, that we are not choosing to worship her over her Divine Son. She is "our Mother on the order of grace,” according to a Vatican II document, and all the graces Mary gives us come directly from our Lord. She is always ready to intercede with Him on our behalf, but never for anything contrary to His wishes.
As long as we approach her as we do Him, with sincerely humble and contrite hearts, we can count on her aid and guidance. Mary’s last spoken words in the Gospels concerned her Son when she said at the wedding feast at Cana “Do whatever he tells You” (John 2:5). If we persevere in our intentions to do Christ’s Will for us, we are doing hers as well.