Today is the feast of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, the much revered icon kept in the church of St Alphonsus in Rome.
Mary from thy Sacred Image with those eyes so sadly sweet, Mother of Perpetual Succour, see us kneeling at thy feet. In thine arms thy Child thou bearest; source of all thy joy and woe; what thy bliss, how deep thy sorrows, Mother thou alone canst know.
On 26 June the feast of Our Lady of Perpetual Help is celebrated, which means the novena in honour of the famous icon begins today (18 June).
For nine consecutive days the following prayer is said, followed by three Hail Marys:
O Mother of Perpetual Help, grant that I may ever invoke your powerful name, the protection of the living and the salvation of the dying. Purest Mary, let your name henceforth be ever on my lips.
Delay not, Blessed Lady, to rescue me whenever I call on you. In my temptations, in my needs, I will never cease to call on you, ever repeating your sacred name, Mary, Mary. What a consolation, what sweetness, what confidence fills my soul when I utter your sacred name or even only think of you! I thank the Lord for having given you so sweet, so powerful, so lovely a name.
But I will not be content with merely uttering your name. Let my love for you prompt me ever to hail you Mother of Perpetual Help. Mother of Perpetual Help, pray for me and grant me the favor I confidently ask of you.
A Russian icon of the Mother of God of the Passion, also known as Strastnaya. It is very rare for this type of icon to depicted Mary seated on a throne, especially a baroque one.
In the Catholic Church, a Cretan copy of this icon is venerated under the title Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
A shrine for Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Baclayon church in Bohol, the Philippines.
Wednesday is known as Baclaran Day in the Philippines, after the famous shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Help at Baclaran in Manila. The Redemptorist church holds a popular weekly Perpetual Help novena on a Wednesday.