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Graces Will Be Abundant (175th Anniversary of Miraculous Medal)
Immaculata Magazine ^ | Oct./Nov./Dec. 2005 | Ada Locatelli, FKM

Posted on 10/28/2005 11:58:04 AM PDT by Pyro7480

Graces Will Be Abundant
by Ada Locatelli, fkm

On November 27, 1830, 175 short years ago, Our Lady appeared to St. Catherine Laboure in the chapel of the Motherhouse of the Sisters of Charity, at 140 Rue du Bac, Paris, entrusting the young novice with a mission and with a gift.

Our Lady showed herself as the Immaculate Conception: her feet resting on a globe and crushing a twisted serpent, rings on her fingers and rays - symbol of graces - flowing from her hands.

St. Catherine recounted: "Her height was medium and her countenance, indescribably beautiful... A frame... formed around the Blessed Virgin. Within it was written in letters of gold: 'O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.' "Then a voice said to me, 'Have a medal struck after this model. All who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck. Graces will be abundant for those who wear it with confidence.'"

The medal was made according to Our Lady's design and freely circulated. In a short time it came to be worn by millions of people and innumerable graces were granted, as promised. Health was restored, bad habits broken, dangers averted, blessings bestowed. So many remarkable effects resulted that the little Medal of the Immaculate Conception became commonly known as the Miraculous Medal.

In 1842, the conversion of the anti-Catholic agnostic Alphonse Ratisbonne attributed to the use of the medal brought about international recognition. On January 20, 1917, seventy-five years after the amazing event, Fr. Stefano Ignudi, rector at the International College of the Conventual Franciscans in Rome, offered the assembled students a meditation that would deeply impress young Fr. Maximilian Kolbe. He had come to Rome to complete his studies and earn his doctorates in philosophy and theology.

He had already decided to organize a spiritual army that would counter evil forces in the world by openly attacking heresy, unbelief and schism. It would be a positive force working "for the conversion to God of all men," promoting their sanctification "under the patronage and through the mediation of the Immaculate Virgin."

Nine months after Fr. Ignudi's meditation about the Miraculous Medal and the marvel of Ratisbonne's conversion, the "Militia of the Immaculata" was born. Appropriately, membership in it would require two simple but meaningful conditions: "To consecrate oneself entirely to the Immaculate Virgin, placing oneself freely as a docile and generous instrument in her hands," and "To wear the Miraculous Medal."

Besides making the Miraculous Medal the external sign of our consecration, St. Maximilian believed in the power of this simple means of apostolate and effective tool for evangelization. He called the Medal: "Our weapon with which to strike hearts" and "A bullet with which a faithful soldier hits the enemy, that is evil, and thus rescues souls."

There are two main places in the MI General Statutes where we are reminded of the importance of this powerful sacramental for us: "With regard to personal prayer, MI members will attend to, in particular, the daily recitation of the prayer: "O Mary, conceived without sin . . ." together with the "intentions" suggested monthly by the International Center.

Not to be neglected is the praiseworthy custom of wearing with devotion the Miraculous Medal, an exterior sign of one's own belonging to the MI (#6). And: "Father Kolbe also strongly recommends spreading the Miraculous Medal, a sign of Mary's maternal concern for sinners and a propitious opportunity for their conversion" (#15).

Let us therefore celebrate this 175th anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady with a renewed commitment to understand, value, and use with faith and apostolic creativity this humble but precious gift of the Miraculous Medal, which the Immaculata donated to us.

TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; History; Prayer; Religion & Culture; Theology; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; immaculateconception; kolbe; mary; maximilian; miraculousmedal; ourlady; ruedebac

St. Maximilian Kolbe, pray for us!

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, pray for us!

1 posted on 10/28/2005 11:58:08 AM PDT by Pyro7480
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To: Marcellinus; MudPuppy; sartorius; netmilsmom

Militia Immaculatae ping!

2 posted on 10/28/2005 11:58:58 AM PDT by Pyro7480 (Blessed Pius IX, pray for us!)
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To: Siobhan; Canticle_of_Deborah; broadsword; NYer; Salvation; sandyeggo; american colleen; ...

Catholic ping!

3 posted on 10/28/2005 11:59:30 AM PDT by Pyro7480 (Blessed Pius IX, pray for us!)
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To: Pyro7480

Thank YOU!

4 posted on 10/28/2005 1:31:10 PM PDT by netmilsmom (God blessed me with a wonderful husband.)
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To: Pyro7480

Thank you for this post. I've been wearing the medal for about 3 years. Sometimes the medal will go missing. I will be wearing the chain and the medal will have fallen off somewhere. But it always turns up - usually in some impossible spot a couple days later.

My neighbor had the same experience. He lost his miles away from home and then a few days later there it was on top of his television.

5 posted on 10/28/2005 1:54:34 PM PDT by Nihil Obstat
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To: Pyro7480
The Miraculous Medal

The Medal of the Immaculate Ception, commonly called the Her feet rested on a white globe...I saw rings on her fingers...Each ring was set with gems...The larger gems emitted greater rays and the smaller gems smaller rays.

Catherine heard an interior voice: These rays symbolize the graces I shed upon those who ask for them. The gems from which rays do not fall are the graces for which souls forgot to ask.

An oval flame formed around the Blessed Virgin, and within it in letters of gold Catherine read the words: O Mary Conceived Without Sin, Pray For Us Who Have Recourse To You.

The voice spoke again: Have a Medal struck after this model. All who wear it will receive graet graces; they should wear it around the neck. Graces will abound for persons who wear it with confidence.

Catherine continued: The tableau seemed to turn, and I beheld the reverse of the Medal: a large M surmounted by a bar and a cross; beneath the M were the Hearts of Jesus and Mary, the one crowned with thorns, the other pierced with a sword.

The front of the Medal represents Mary standing on the earth, her foot crushing the head of a serpent, and her hands outstretched to all who ask her assistance. The prayer encircling her contains one of her most precious titles: O MARY CONCEIVED WIYHOUT SIN, PRAY FOR US WHO HAVE RECOURSED TO YOU. The rays of light from her hands symbolize the graces which she is only too eager to bestow upon those who wear the Medal and pray to her.

The Medal was made according to Our Lady's design. It was freely circulated and in a short time was worn by millions. In its wake followed innumerable wonders. Health was restored, sickness banished, blessing bestowed.


6 posted on 10/28/2005 1:57:40 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Pyro7480


7 posted on 10/28/2005 2:19:28 PM PDT by diamond6 (Everyone who is for abortion has already been born. Ronald Reagan)
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To: Pyro7480

Was wearing one years before I was a Catholic. Gave the one I wore for years to a friend's daughter who was having a tough time in school (she's in college now and doing extremely well). Still have one on, never take it off.

8 posted on 10/28/2005 2:50:46 PM PDT by AnAmericanMother (. . . Ministrix of ye Chace (recess appointment), TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary . . .)
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To: AnAmericanMother
That was very nice of you, AAM. I have one on at all times as well. I have one that I only wear in the shower, and another that I have on a chain with the other medals that I wear (one that has St. Joseph the Worker on one side, and St. Dymphna on the other; one that has St. Francis de Sales on one side and a Sacred Heart design on the other; and one that has St. Philip Neri on one side, and Mary as Regina Angelorum on the other, which I got at Brompton Oratory).
9 posted on 10/28/2005 3:09:19 PM PDT by Pyro7480 (Blessed Pius IX, pray for us!)
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To: Pyro7480
I put my St. Antony of Padua medal on my Rosary so I remember to thank him for his valiant efforts against my absent-mindedness . . . he outdid himself last night, I was at my wits' end because I lost an extremely expensive contact lens and couldn't find it anywhere - well, it turned up in a place I had looked 3-4 times before . . . I owe St. Antony a nice big candle.

My horse wears a St. George medal on her bridle, with St. Patrick on the other side. We need their help in the hunting field for sure . . . St. Hubert has his hands full with the hounds . . . < g > it's a very Catholic hunt, the priest comes out and blesses the hounds at the start of every season.

10 posted on 10/28/2005 3:29:01 PM PDT by AnAmericanMother (. . . Ministrix of ye Chace (recess appointment), TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary . . .)
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To: Pyro7480


O MAry HELP the Pope, the Church, the people, for without Thee to HELP-we are LOST ! HAIL MARY !

( beautiful post,by the way!)

11 posted on 10/28/2005 4:14:53 PM PDT by Rosary (Pray the rosary daily,wear the Brown scapular)
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To: Pyro7480; american colleen; Lady In Blue; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; ...
Her height was medium and her countenance, indescribably beautiful

"In 1970, a pilgrim visiting the Shrine of San DeMarco, Italy, received a vision of a woman who told him to take a picture of the setting sun. Having a simple Polaroid camera, he only saw the sunset when he snapped this picture. When the picture was developed, this image of the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared (note the sunset at the lower right of the picture)." This image was taken from a home-made Christmas Card, and scanned December 24, 1997.

12 posted on 10/28/2005 4:21:55 PM PDT by NYer (“Socialism is the religion people get when they lose their religion")
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To: AnAmericanMother; netmilsmom

I have on the Miraculous Medal I got from St. Catherine's Metal Works (see the Catholicity website for details) and a brown scapular from the Franciscans. I even kept them on when I had a CT scan once. I just put the Miraculous medal into my mouth for the 5 minutes it took!


13 posted on 10/28/2005 4:29:52 PM PDT by Frank Sheed ("Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions." ~GK Chesterton.)
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To: Frank Sheed
I ordered our Miraculaous Medals from St. Catherine's MetalWorks also.... great quality and a nice apostolate.
Hubby and I never take ours off...his is silver and mine is brass.
Semper Fi!
Pam MI
14 posted on 10/30/2005 2:55:51 PM PST by MudPuppy (Another Day ~ Another Adventure!)
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To: Pyro7480
The Miraculous Medal

by Fr. William Saunders

Other Articles by Fr. William Saunders
The Miraculous Medal

I received a Miraculous Medal for Confirmation. Where does it come from and what does it mean?

The story of the Miraculous Medal arises from the apparitions of our Blessed Mother to St. Catherine Laboure, a novice at the motherhouse of the Daughters of Charity in Paris (where it still stands today at 140 Rue du Bac). St. Catherine (1806-1876; canonized 1947) was the daughter of a farmer, and was the ninth of 11 children. When she was eight years old, St. Catherine lost her mother.

Even at that tender age, St. Catherine showed a special love for the Blessed Mother: Upon her mother’s death, St. Catherine climbed a chair to reach the statue of the Blessed Mother in their home. Clasping it to her chest, she said, "Now, dear Blessed Mother, you will be my mother." She was called upon to care for the family, thereby depriving her of any formal education at school. (Her youngest sibling was an invalid and needed constant care.) On January 22, 1830, at the age of 24, St. Catherine joined the Daughters of Charity, who had been founded by St. Vincent de Paul.

On the night of July 18, 1830, St. Catherine saw our Blessed Mother seated in the choir of the motherhouse chapel. St. Catherine herself recorded the incident, which she entitled, "July Conversation with the Most Blessed Virgin, from 11:30 in the evening of the 18th until 1:30 in the morning of the 19th, St. Vincent’s Day." During this time, the Blessed Mother spoke to her and made several predictions which would later come to pass. The Blessed Mother said, "My child, the good God wishes to charge you with a mission. You will have much to suffer, but you will rise above these sufferings by reflecting that what you do is for the glory of God. You will know what the good God wants. You will be tormented until you have told him who is charged with directing you. You will be contradicted but, do not fear, you will have grace. Tell with confidence all that passes within you; tell it with simplicity. Have confidence. Do not be afraid."

On November 27, 1830, the Blessed Mother again appeared to St. Catherine at about 5:30PM, while she was making her meditation with the community. St. Catherine described what she saw: "The Virgin was standing. She was of medium height, and clothed all in white. Her dress was of the whiteness of the dawn, made in the style called à la vierge, that is, high neck and plain sleeves. A white veil covered her head and fell on either side to her feet. Under the veil, her hair, in coils, was bound with a fillet ornamented with lace, about three centimeters in height or of two fingers’ breadth, without pleats, and resting lightly on the hair. Her face was sufficiently exposed, indeed exposed very well, and so beautiful that it seems to me impossible to express her ravishing beauty. Her feet rested on a white globe, that is to say half a globe, or at least I saw only half. There was also a serpent, green in color with yellow spots. The hands were raised to the height of the stomach and held, in a very relaxed manner and as if offering it to God, a golden ball surmounted with a little golden cross, which represented the world. Her eyes were now raised to heaven, now lowered. Her face was of such beauty that I could not describe it. All at once, I saw rings on her fingers, three rings to each finger, the largest one near the base of the finger, one of medium size in the middle, the smallest one at the tip. Each ring was set with gems, some more beautiful than others; the larger gems emitted greater rays and the smaller gems, smaller rays; the rays bursting from all sides flooded the base, so that I could no longer see the feet of the Blessed Virgin."

The Blessed Mother then explained to St. Catherine the symbolism involved in her appearance: "This ball that you see represents the whole world, especially France, and each person in particular. [The dazzling rays] are the symbols of graces I shed upon those who ask for them. The gems from which the rays do not fall are the graces for which souls forget to ask." A slightly oval frame surrounded the Blessed Mother upon which were the words written in gold: "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee." This image clearly identified the Blessed Mother as the Immaculate Conception and the Mediatrix of graces. (In 1854, Blessed Pope Pius IX solemnly pronounced the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, that "the most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of Almighty God and in view of the merits of Christ Jesus the Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin..." (Ineffabilis Deus).)

The Blessed Mother then instructed St. Catherine to have a medal struck after this image. On the reverse side there was to be a large M surmounted by a bar and a cross; beneath the M were to be the heart of Jesus, crowned with thorns, and the heart of Mary, pierced with a sword. The Blessed Mother also said, "All who wear it will receive great graces; they should wear it around the neck. Graces will abound for those who wear it with confidence." With the approval of Archbishop de Quelen of Paris, the first 1,500 medals were struck on June 30, 1832. Because of the numerous favors received by the faithful, the medal was soon known as "miraculous." After a canonical inquiry at Paris (1836) regarding the apparitions, the medal was declared of supernatural origin.

One of the most famous miraculous favors surrounding the medal was the instantaneous conversion of Alphonse Ratisbonne, a non-practicing Jew who was an atheist. Ratisbonne was the son and heir of a wealthy aristocratic family of Jewish bankers in Strasbourg, France. After his older brother converted to Catholicism and became a priest, and the family disinherited him, Ratisbonne held a deep hostility toward Catholicism. When in Rome, Ratisbonne met with the Baron de Bussieres, the brother of one of his best friends. The baron, a devout Catholic, dared Ratisbonne to wear a Miraculous Medal and recite a short daily prayer to Mary; if nothing happened, then indeed there would be nothing to such "detestable superstitions," as Ratisbonne called them. He agreed to the wager.

On January 20, 1842, the last day of his stay in Rome, the baron and Ratisbonne stopped in the Church of St. Andrea delle Fratte. Immediately, Ratisbonne felt in spiritual turmoil. He saw a bright light that filled the chapel of St. Michael the Archangel. He said: "I saw someone standing on the altar, a lofty shining figure, all majesty and sweetness, the Virgin Mary just as she looks on this medal. Some irresistible force drew me towards her. She motioned to me to kneel down and when I did so, she seemed to approve. Though she never said a word, I understood her perfectly.... I was there, on my knees, in tears.... I took the medal...and kissed passionately the image of the Virgin radiant with grace. It was she!" Shortly thereafter, he was baptized, and then later ordained as a priest. The instantaneous conversion of this prominent figure helped move the Holy See to grant official papal approval for the medal.

Regarding the Miraculous Medal, Father Rene Laurentin, one of the greatest Mariologists of our times, said, "The front manifests the light, God’s irradiation on the one whom He has chosen as a prototype of the salvation proposed to all human beings in Jesus Christ, so that all will be light in His light. The back manifests the austere and hidden face of the message: love and the Cross, the resources of salvation, illustrated by the Passion of our Lord and the compassion of Our Lady that all are invited to share."

As we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, and remember the 175th anniversary of the apparitions of the Blessed Mother to St. Catherine Laboure, let us turn our hearts to our Blessed Mother, who always wants to lead us closer to her divine Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. By her prayers and example, may Mary, full of grace and conceived without sin, guide us along the path of holiness.

Fr. Saunders is pastor of Our Lady of Hope Parish in Potomac Falls and a professor of catechetics and theology at Notre Dame Graduate School in Alexandria. If you enjoy reading Fr. Saunders' work, his new book entitled Straight Answers (400 pages) is available at the Pauline Book and Media Center of Arlington, Virginia (703/549-3806).

(This article courtesy of the
Arlington Catholic Herald.)

15 posted on 12/16/2005 7:49:09 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Pyro7480

Thanks for the thread, Pyro. Totally missed it last night.

16 posted on 11/28/2007 9:58:55 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Pyro7480
Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal (Catholic Caucus)

Graces Will Be Abundant (175th Anniversary of Miraculous Medal)

America Needs Fatima Launches "Miracles for America" Campaign: A Miraculous Medal Outreach

Miracles For America: A Miraculous Medal Outreach

How the Miraculous Medal Changed My Life

17 posted on 11/28/2007 10:10:17 AM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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