The Redemptorists Are Making Her Known

Dedicated to Our Mother of Perpetual Help, our popular Facebook page, @PrayForUsMary, reaches well over a million Facebook viewers each week. People from all over the world log in everyday to leave messages of hope and thanksgiving to Mary.

by The Very Reverend Thomas D. Picton, C.Ss.R.

As Redemptorists we find this personally gratifying. In 1866, Pope Pius IX entrusted this most precious icon to our care with the stipulation that we “make her known throughout the world.” Today, the original icon, enshrined inside the Church of St. Alphonsus in Rome, Italy, draws pilgrims from around the globe, eager to gaze upon those beautiful eyes that promise unconditional love and support.

For the past 144 years, Redemptorists everywhere have faithfully carried out this charge, spreading devotion to her worldwide through our mission preaching events, novenas, homilies and other ministries. Today, she is the source of deep devotion for Catholics in Brazil, Chile, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, the Philippines, Poland, Singapore and the U.S. The government of Haiti, still trying to recover from January’s devastating earthquake, has officially recognized Our Mother of Perpetual Help as its official patron and protectress.

Shrines to Our Mother of Perpetual Help dot the globe, but perhaps the most famous of all is in Baclaran, Parañaque City, in the Philippines. Run by the Redemptorists, this international shrine and pilgrimage center hosts millions of people every year. Every Wednesday, roughly 100,000 people come to the Redemptorist church in Baclaran to make the perpetual novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help; that number exceeds 120,000 on the first Wednesday of each month. The biggest turnout of the year is on Ash Wednesday. The crowd for that day simply defies estimate.

The other great center of devotion to Our Mother of Perpetual Help is the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help located in Boston, MA. At the heart of the Basilica are the Golden Shrine and the famous icon of Our Lady. The icon, one of the first copies to come to the Americas, was enthroned in the present shrine in 1878. The Basilica, or Mission Church, has been staffed by the Redemptorists since 1871. In July of 1922, the first Perpetual Help novena was said in St. Louis, MO, inside St. Alphonsus “the Rock” Church, a Redemptorist parish.

Worldwide you can find her name on churches, hospitals, clinics, retreat centers, educational and social service centers. In the U.S. alone, over a hundred churches bear her name. Copies of the icon can be found in homes around the globe. Every year on June 27th, the feast day of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, people around the world join in solemn procession to mark her special day and to ask for her intercession in their lives.


We have now carried our devotion to Our Mother of Perpetual Help to the online world. Follow our Facebook page @PrayForUsMary; and download our free Redemptorists’ app to Our Mother of Perpetual Help. It’s available through both the Apple and Google stores. It’s your opportunity to pray with us online.