About the Icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help
For information about the history of the Icon, please visit our page History of the Icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
The Icons's Meaning
Every picture tells a story, Every Icon proclaims a message. This Icon proclaims the message that Mary, able to comfort Christ in His sufferings, is able to comfort us in ours. Christ is the redeemer whose sorry is perpetually present to Him. Mary is the Mother whose help is perpetually present to us.
The Icon proclaims Mary as Mother of God — the Greek letters near Mary's Halo mean, "Mother of God." The Icon also proclaims the place of Angles in Redemption. The Greek letters near the Angel with the lance, read and sponge mean, "Archangel Michael." Those near the Angel with the Cross and nails mean, "Archangel Gabriel." Beside Our Lord are the Greek initials for "Jesus Christ".
Jesus, disturbed by a Vision of his future death, runs to His Mother's arms for help. He is shown in a state of agitation. Mary is show in a state of calm. Jesus is so agitated He turns His Head from side to side, only to realise that on each side is the inescapable Vision of Calvary presented in a dignified yet frightening way by the Angles of Redemption, Michael and Gabriel.
Jesus begins to tremble, and the trembling loosens the strap of His sandal, which remains attached to His foot by a single strand. Playing His hands in Mary's, He clings to her, reminding us that a soul shaken by fear or temptation can be saved from despair by the single strand of confidence in Mary.
Our Lady's eyes look, not at the Cross or nails, but at us. Her EYES speak and say, "I give my Child for your Redemption. Do not be Afraid. Place your hands, as Jesus does, in mind. He and I are with you always. He has made me His Mother that I may be YOUR Mother of PERPETUAL Help. My Icon is the place on earth where I meet you in every need. How can you ever fear?"
O Virgin Mother of Perpetual Help,
I come before your Sacred Icon,
And with childlike confidence,
invoke your aid.
Show yourself a Mother to me now,
And have pity on me.
O Mother of Perpetual Help,
For the love you bear to Jesus,
Help me in this my necessity.
I leave it all to you in the name of the Father.
I leave it all to you in the name of the Son.
I leave it all to you in the name of the Holy Spirit.