Rome (Agenzia Fides) - On 27 June 2015, the Redemptorists around the world will begin the celebrations of the 150th anniversary (1866) of the delivery of the image of Our Lady of Perpetual Help to the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (Redemptorists) by Pope Pius IX, with a mandate to "make her known all over the world". The celebrations, which will have the theme "Mother of Perpetual Help, Icon of Love", will end on June 27, 2016. As part of the various initiatives, there will also be a competition for the creation of a promotional video.
The icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help arrived in Rome, from Crete, about the year 1500. For about 300 years it was exposed in the church of San Matteo in Rome, and regarded by the people as miraculous. With the arrival of Napoleon's troops in 1798, the church of San Matteo was destroyed and the icon was taken to a private chapel of the Augustinian Fathers, and was forgotten. In 1855 the Redemptorists bought the land on which once stood the old church of San Matteo, to build their general house. Many remembered then that in that place a miraculous image of Our Lady was once exposed. The image was found in 1865 and the Redemptorists asked the Pope to bring it back to where it was originally and this is what happened in 1866. Since then the devotion to Our Lady of Perpetual Help has spread worldwide. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 13/04/2015)