Our Lady of Mercy (Ransom)

Our Lady of Mercy (Ransom)

In my reference book, Dictionary of Mary, it states that the feast of Our Lady of Mercy (also known as Our Lady of Ransom), was linked to a devotion spread by the Order of Mercedarians.

The Mercedarians were a congregation of men founded in 1218 by St. Peter Nolasco. Along with caring for the sick in hospitals, they were also known for their efforts in rescuing Christian captives from the Moors. The New Advent online Catholic Encyclopedia tells us that Peter Nolasco was requested by the Blessed Virgin, in a vision, to found an order especially devoted to the ransom of captives.

Again, according to the Dictionary of Mary, because the feastday of Our Lady of Mercy was associated with the liberation of slaves, it was “deemed to be of lesser interest for the Universal Church today and so returned to particular calendars.”

In an article published by Zenit in 2006, the Mercedarians outline the state of affairs today in terms of slavery: Mercedarians Spotlight the New Slaveries. Read it and weep.

So I say thank you to the Mercedarians for their steadfast efforts in keeping the dreadful reality of slavery (human and spiritual bondage in all its many forms) before the eyes of the world, and for their continued invoking of Our Lady of Mercy’s intercession for all of humanity.


2 Responses

  1. With all those things mentioned in the Mercedarians’ concerns, no one ever need wonder why Jesus sweat blood in the Garden. Thank you for finding for us that Mary is a help in the many slaveries of body and soul. She is Mediatrix, so we know she is a help in all things, but it is good to remember her under certain titles, too. We are uncovering little slavery stories here in America –kids who aren’t allowed to go to school, who do a family’s entire workload, live in the garage or a tent, etc. We say Marana-tha to Jesus’ coming, but how do we say “Come, Mary!”?

  2. Carol, how do we say “Come, Mary!”? Well, I’m just thinking now, that there are probably as many different ways as She has titles. But it need never be complicated; a thought will bring her to our side.

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