The Superior General of the Redemptorists, Fr. Michael Brehl, CSsR, officially proclaimed the Jubilee year of Our Mother of Perpetual Help during a solemn ceremony held in the Church of St. Alphonsus in Rome where the original icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help is venerated. The memorable moments of this historic event started with a solemn celebration of evening prayer by the Redemptorists who gathered in the shrine at 5.40 pm. Present along with the members of the St. Alphonsus community, Rome, were visiting Major Superiors from the different parts of the world.
Fr. Michael Brehl presided at the Solemn Mass which began at 6.30 pm and before the homily he formally read out the official proclamation of the Jubilee Year which began on June 27, 2015 and ends on June 27, 2016. In announcing the Jubilee Year in honour of Our Mother of Perpetual Help Fr. Brehl highlighted the providential coincidence of the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy that has already been proclaimed by the Holy Father. During the homily Fr. Michael emphasised that the icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help is indeed the icon of love – God’s love for us and also the love of a Mother for her children and so it is worth celebrating this anniversary with joy, hope and love. He went on to say that the Church, with the granting of the plenary indulgence by Pope Francis also recognizes the importance of this jubilee year. This is why all of us – Redemptorist Missionaries, religious devoted to Our Lady of Perpetual Help, together with many lay associates celebrate with great joy 150 years of devotion to Mary who is our Perpetual Help – this is an important anniversary. In conclusion he asked that we might reflect on what this might mean for us this year? He went on, I encourage everyone to follow the example of the beloved disciple in the Gospel of this evening and to once again welcome Mary into our hearts, into our homes, into our lives.