"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

The Vigil to Dry Tears and Our Lady of Tears of Syracuse

Reliquary of Our Lady of Tears of Syracuse.


On the evening of May 5th the Holy Father will preside over the Vigil to Dry Tears.

On May 5th, in Saint Peter’s Basilica, the Holy Father will preside at a Vigil dedicated to those who suffer in soul and body. The reliquary of Our Lady of Tears of Syracuse will be displayed for the veneration of the faithful.To dry faces streaked with the tears of physical or spiritual suffering and to bring them consolation: this is the purpose of the Prayer Vigil “To Dry the Tears”, at which Pope Francis will preside on 5 May at 18:00 in Saint Peter’s Basilica. All those suffering interiorly are invited to come to receive spiritual comfort. - Vatican Press Release
Providentially the Vigil takes place as Holocaust Remembrance Day concludes, although I didn't see any reference to that observance.

Antonina and Angelo Iannuso with weeping Madonna.


An extraordinary feature of the Vigil will be the exposition and veneration of the reliquary containing the Tears of Our Lady of Syracuse.
During the Vigil the reliquary of Our Lady of Tears of Syracuse will be displayed for the veneration of the faithful in Saint Peter’s Basilica. This reliquary is linked to the extraordinary phenomenon that occurred between 29 August and 1 September, 1953, when a small plaster picture depicting the Immaculate Heart of Mary, hung above the bed of a young married couple, Angelo Iannuso and Antonina Giusto, shed human tears. The reliquary contains part of the tears that flowed miraculously from the image of Our Lady.

The tears of Mary are a sign of her maternal love and her participation in the lives of her children: this is why they will be in the Basilica during the Vigil, as if to encourage, console, sustain and guide those in times of trial to entrust themselves to the Virgin Mary without reserve, with the confidence of children, particularly in this month dedicated to her. - Vatican
I included that last part because it seems to explain the meaning of weeping statues and icons - that rather than a warning of doom, the tears represent the maternal refuge one finds in the Blessed Virgin, our Mother.  "The tears of Mary are a sign of her maternal love and her participation in the lives of her children."  The tears of Mary are intended  "to encourage, console, sustain and guide those in times of trial to entrust themselves to the Virgin Mary without reserve, with the confidence of children."

Antonina Iannuso in room where Our Lady first shed tears.
Pius XII confirmed the miraculous tears and healings
on a Vatican radio broadcast in 1954.
Story here.


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