November 27, 2017

St. Catherine Labouré and the Miraculous Medal

St. Catherine Labouré

No wonder the miraculous medal wins extraordinary graces for those who wear it and pray for Mary's intercession and assistance. It was designed by the Blessed Mother herself. The first in a series of visions that revealed the design of the medal was on July 18th when Sister Catherine Labouré was led by her guardian angel to the chapel in the community of the Daughters of Charity in Paris. There she met the Blessed Mother who declared, "My child, I am giving you a mission."

The mission was given to Sr. Catherine in a vision on November 27th 1830 during her evening meditation. Our Lady told Catherine that she obtains grace for those who ask, but sadly nobody has asked. During the third apparition, Sr. Catherine Labouré beheld Our Lady as she stood on a globe with her arms outstretched, dazzling rays of light streaming from her fingers. Framing her was an inscription: 'O Mary conceived without sin pray for us who have recourse to thee.'

Here we see the Virgin Mary standing upon a globe representing that she is the Queen of Heaven and Earth. As she crushes the serpent beneath her foot she declares that Satan and all his followers are helpless before her. The vision turned to show the reverse side of the medal. Here twelve stars encircled the large M, from which arose a cross. The 12 stars are the apostles of Jesus that represent the Universal Church surrounding Mary. On the other hand, the cross symbolizes Christ and our redemption, while the interweaving M beneath it stands for Mary who is closely linked to Jesus and the world. In this we see Mary's role as Mother of the Church. The two hearts represent the love of Jesus and Mary for all of us.

Through these visions Mary instructed Sr. Catherine Labouré to have a medal struck upon this model. Those who wear it will receive an immense store of graces. Our Lady commissioned Catherine to spread this devotion to every person in the world. The miraculous medal is not a good-luck charm. Rather, it is a great testimony to faith and the power of prayer. Its greatest miracles are those of patience, forgiveness, repentance and faith. God uses sacramentals like this, not as a sacrament, but as an instrument to effect results, according to His will.

Miraculous Medal Prayer

O Virgin Mother of God, Mary Immaculate, We dedicate and consecrate ourselves to you under the title of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. May this Medal be for each one of us a sure sign of your affection for us and a constant reminder of our duties toward you. While wearing it, may we be blessed by your loving protection and preserved in the grace of your Son. O Most Powerful Virgin, Mary Mother of Our Savior, keep us close to you every moment of our lives. Obtain for us, your children, a holy death; so that we may enjoy the bliss of Heaven forever. Amen.

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