For centuries, the faithful have looked to Our Mother of Perpetual Help for miracles and answers to prayer. Here at the Basilica, you can find the Blessed Mother honored under this title in the Our Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel, which features a sparkling blue mosaic and breathtaking relief sculptures. As we celebrate the Feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help on June 27, we invite you to virtually explore where this devotion is honored in the Basilica.
History of the Devotion
The devotion to Our Mother of Perpetual Help dates back over 500 years, when a wine merchant stole a Marian icon from a Cretan monastery. Later, it was brought to the church of St. Matthew in Rome, where it resided for 300 years, even surviving the church’s destruction by Napoleon’s army in 1798. 88 years later, Pope Pius IX gave the icon to the Redemptorist congregation at the Church of Saint Alphonsus, where it remains today.
Our Mother of Perpetual Help at the Basilica
The Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel in the Basilica features a mosaic reproduction of the Our Mother of Perpetual Help icon. Mary comforts the Child Jesus as he turns in fear from the Archangels Michael and Gabriel, who brandish the instruments of the passion. Surrounding the icon are Botticino reredos depicting saints including Alphonsus Liguori and Luke the Evangelist.
The chapel was a gift from the Redemptorist Fathers of New York, and was dedicated by Bishop James E. McManus, CSsR of Ponce, Puerto Rico, on May 13, 1962.
Virtually Tour the Our Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel
Explore the Our Mother of Perpetual Help Chapel in immersive 360° in our virtual tour below!
Rohling, Geraldine M., PhD, MAEd. The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception: Guide and Tour Book. Washington, D.C.: Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, 2018.