Nossa Senhora da Penha de França
A 19th century Portuguese engraving of the miraculous image of Our Lady of Peña de Francia, Spain.
According to legend the statue was discovered by the monk Simon Vela after Mary appeared to him in a dream. She told him to go to the mountains, where it had been buried to protect it from destruction by the Moors, who were opposed to the veneration of images.
The monk followed Mary’s directions and eventually found the statue with the help of some shepherds. He built a small chapel on the site, which soon become a place of pilgrimage.
Our Lady of Peña de Francia is usually depicted with a man and a lizard at her feet. One day a pilgrim fell asleep on the side of the road, overcome with fatigue. While he was sleeping a large snake approached him. Before the snake could reach the man a huge lizard jumped over him, as if to warn him. The man woke up and managed to kill the snake before it could attack.
Virgen del Socorro
The statue of Our Lady of Succour in the Real Oratorio del Caballero de Gracia, a 17th century church in Madrid.
Mary is shown as the protectress and refuge of small children under attack from Satan, represented by a dragonlike creature. As the demon tries to attack the infant, Mary lifts a spear to scare it off.
Nuestra Señora de la Correa
The image of Our Lady of the Cord in Valencia, Spain. According to tradition, the devotion of wearing a belt in honour of Mary was initiated by St Monica, the mother of St Augustine.
In a vision Mary gave the saint a black leather belt and told her she would grand all those who wore it special protection.