Disclaimer

NOTICE: I am a practicing Catholic, active and in good-standing with my local parish, who professes faith and loyalty to the Church and our Holy Father. This "little work" is purely a personal expression of that faith and loyalty, and not an officially recognized ministry in the Diocese of Honolulu. ~ Peter


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Holy Face Medal: Heaven's Blessed Coin...


"As in a kingdom one can procure all that is desired with a coin stamped with the King's effigy,
so in the Kingdom of Heaven one will obtain all that one desires with the precious coin of my Holy Face."

~ Words of Our Lord to Sr. Marie of St. Peter, Carmelite Mystic (d. 1848)

The Holy Face Medal, as revealed by Heaven to Bl. Maria Pierina de Micheli.

Family and Friends who know me very well are aware that I’m an enthusiastic devotee of the Holy Face Medal. I wrote a little about the history of the Holy Face Devotion this past July 2011 (click on this link to see the post: Holy Face Devotion), but with the recent celebration on September 11th of the Feast of one of the devotion's most ardent promoters - Bl. Maria Pierina de Micheli (a.k.a. Madre Pierina) - I felt inspired to share more about the special medal that Our Lord had requested through his messenger, Madre Pierina.

   
A portrait of Jesus painted circa the 6th Century (left) and the Holy Face of Our Lord,
as miraculously imprinted on the Holy Shroud of Turin (right).

Again, the devotion to the Holy Face is not new to the Church; the familiar image of the bearded face of Christ has its origin in the earliest days of Christian history, as confirmed by ancient paintings discovered on the walls of the Roman catacombs. But the devotion has taken on a whole new significance in the 2oth century through the efforts of Madre Pierina and her congregation, the Daughters of the Immaculate Conception of Buenos Aires.

From her childhood and throughout her lifetime, Madre Pierina experienced several mystical visits from Our Lord and the Blessed Virgin, who requested that she promote the image of the suffering face of Jesus Christ as a visual reminder of how sin offends God... and the need for reparation. During the first Friday of Lent in 1936, Jesus reportedly appeared to the devout nun to request the following:

"I wish that my face, which reflects my soul's deepest anguish, the sorrow and love of my heart,
be better honored.  He, who contemplates me (the Holy Face), consoles me."

In particular, the Lord asked for a new devotional medal to be struck - somewhat resembling a coin - to which he attached special graces and blessings for those who would wear it in the spirit of prayerful atonement. The front of the medal is imprinted with an image of the Holy Face (based on the image from the Shroud of Turin) surrounded by the words, "Illumina Domine Vultum Tuum Super Nos (May the light of your Face shine upon us, O Lord)"... while the reverse of the medal displays the Blessed Sacrament surrounded with, "Mane Nobiscum Domine (Stay with us, O Lord)"; the Holy Face Medal, as it came to be called, spread rapidly with innumerable favors being attributed to its pious use. Through Madre Pierina, Jesus conveyed the following promise to all peoples who will exercise this devotion:

"According to the care you take in making reparation to my face, disfigured by blasphemers, I will take care
of yours, which has been disfigured by sin.  I will reprint on it my image, and render it as beautiful as it was on
leaving the baptismal font.  I promise personal and spiritual protection to all who venerate this medal."

In a feeble attempt to obstruct Madre Pierina’s mission the devil often harassed her - physically attacking her and setting fire to the supply of Holy Face pictures she kept on hand for distribution. But the brave nun wasn’t easily deterred by the evil one's assaults. Instead, she heroically prayed, sacrificed, and persevered in the mission entrusted to her by Our Lord and the Blessed Virgin, while also scaling the heights of holiness. Her sanctity was attested to by her worthy confessor - the Ven. Hildebrand Gregori - and others who knew her closely. She died in 1945, perfectly fulfilling the personal sentiments that she had written earlier in 1941: "I feel a deep longing to live always united to Jesus, to love him intensely because my death can only be a transport of love with my spouse, Jesus."

   
 A portrait of Bl. Maria Pierina de Micheli, the Apostle of the Holy Face, and a
1st Class Relic of the Blessed gifted to my ministry by her congregation.

Madre Pierina was declared a Blessed by the Catholic Church on May 30, 2010, sparking renewed interest in her life and work. The message entrusted to her by Heaven has inspired me to wear a Holy Face Medal daily (for over 15 years now) and it has proven to be a source of benediction and spiritual comfort for me. I encourage all Catholics (and even non-Catholics) to wear it, too. For more information about the Holy Face Devotion and Madre Pierina, please visit the website of the Holy Face Association: http://www.holyface.com/.

I close this post by sharing one more promise attached to this medal and devotion. This one was given by Our Lady during one of her private apparitions to Bl. Maria Pierina de Micheli.

"All who wear a medal like this and make, if possible, every Tuesday a visit to the Blessed Sacrament, in order
to repair the outrages to the Holy Face of my son, Jesus, received during his Passion and every day in the Holy Eucharist, will be strengthened in faith... prompted to defend it... and will overcome all difficulties internal and external.  Furthermore, they will have a peaceful death under the loving gaze of my Divine Son."

~ Words of Our Lady to Madre Pierina


*** This lay-ministry currently has a limited supply of gold-colored aluminum Holy Face Medals, which are being offered to the readers of this blog at no charge (Hawaii or US-mainland residents only).  If you would like to receive a medal (one medal per person, per request), please email Peter with your full name and mailing address at guadalupe_house@yahoo.com (indicate 'Holy Face Medal Request' in the subject line).  As an added blessing, the Holy Face Medal will be prayed over and touched to the relic of Bl. Maria Pierina de Micheli pictured above before being mailed to the requestor.

1 comment:

  1. A testimony received, via email from Conor in Wisconsin, concerning the Holy Face Medal. Posted here with the author's permission:

    "Dear Peter,

    THANK YOU VERY MUCH for sending me a medal! I am so taken with this image of the Holy Face... it's a beautiful reminder of God's love.

    I have recently returned to the church after many years, and see this as a gift from God. Would you kindly say a Hail Mary for me as I journey back into the mystery?

    Peace and Blessings to you; thanks, again..."

    ReplyDelete