Today is the traditional feast of Our Lady of Deliverance in Madrid.
It is very much associated with devotion to Nuestra Senora de la Leche y Buen Parto, Our Lady of the Milk and Safe Delivery, in St. Augustine, Florida - the oldest shrine to Our Lady in the United States. Our Lady is often invoked under this title by parents, especially mothers, for a safe delivery. History of the devotion can be found here.
This title of the Blessed Virgin is known elsewhere in the world and associated with a variety of needs, favors, and miracles attributed to her intercession. As I searched for an image of Our Lady under this title, I came across some disturbing images. Those from the 2010 massacre in Iraq of Christians at the Church of Our Lady of Deliverance - one of the earliest attacks by the group we now know as ISIS.
After the martyrdom of Pere Jacques Hamel, the French priest killed by ISIS terrorists this week, it may be good to look at what martyrdom looks like in our century. It seems to me these things will be coming to churches in the West, and we may have many unexpected martyrs. The Blood of Martyrs may be what is needed to unite us and save the world.
Our Lady of Deliverance Martyrs.
What martyrdom looks like today ... no theological explanation needed ...
58 Catholic Assyrians were killed by Islamic State of Iraq, affiliated with Al-Qaeda, on October 31, inside Our Lady of Deliverance Syriac Catholic Church in Baghdad. Here are some pictures.
What laity look like in martyrdom.
"Let the children come to me ... do not stop them ..."
What priests look like slaughtered
in odium fidei.
in odium fidei.
Killed in odium fidei
that is, in hatred of the faith.
Our Lady of Salvation-Deliverance
Holy Virgin of peace, Virgin most pure,
grant that we may fix in our hearts a Holy Fear of God,
the beginning of all things in existence,
the beginning of wisdom.
We implore Thee Queen of martyrs
to obtain from our Savior, the dispenser of every good,
the restoration of health of body and soul -
and the grace to persevere in the service of God,
and thus merit the eternal Glory in Heaven.