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Devotion to Our Lady of Good Counsel

Devotion to Our Lady of Good Counsel
Our Lady of Good Counsel
Our Lady of Good Counsel by
Bartolomé Pérez (Spanish, 1634–1693). Universal Creative Commons license

The use of beads and scapulars, household altars, novenas, and other holy customs observed in private and public, are all good for the purpose wherever they are adopted.

But something is required which may reach the many who cannot be got to practice so much; something more simple and more general; something which may be able to reach the heart at once, seize upon it, and retain it.

Our Lady of Good Counsel devotion aims at obtaining all that the gift of Good Counsel gives through the intercession of Mary, the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God, to Whom the Infallible Spouse of Christ attributes the very words of the Holy Ghost: “In me is Counsel”.

No one is ashamed to confess and to honor Mary. Her presence fills every home and is constantly before the minds of the inmates. In a word, devotion to Our Lady, so to speak, saturates the land. And it is not too much to say — indeed it is what the Catholics of Italy themselves thankfully proclaim this deep devotion has been the cause of saving their faith from so many open and secret foes during the past three generations.

Devotion to Our Lady of Good Counsel is needed in like manner: for if it be true that to Her alone is reserved the power of crushing all heresies throughout the whole world and in all time, never was it more necessary, to manifest that great power than in these days when all the streams of past error and malice unite with newer streams more deadly and wide—spread, to form a vast deluge of falsehood and error, meant by its author and his agents to wash out Christianity from the minds of men.

It is the cunning of the infernal serpent, which has planned all this and made it universal. It is his power and sleepless astuteness which nurture and direct it. It is, for it must be Mary, therefore, Who is destined to crush him — to crush his head, — to leave not one of his machinations disentangled and obliterated until all are effaced by Her might. It is Hers to give the world- that Wisdom, and Counsel, and strength necessary for its last and most terrible combat. By her Most Pure, Virginal, and Maternal Dignity, by the immensity of Her merit and Her share in the work of Our Redemption, She must end in crushing to atoms the head of that deadly enemy of God and man, who desires to strangle Her Child in the souls of those for whom that Child died upon Calvary.

Prayer of the Pilgrims

The people of Italy have honored and still honor the Shrine of Our Lady in Genazzano, both publicly and privately. They come there at all times for favors. When the pilgrims come in sight of the Sanctuary, a very edifying ceremony takes place. They recite a prayer such as the following:

Hail venerable and Holy House of Mary where doth reside Her wondrous Image.
Hail O Mary Moth­er of Good Counsel,
Who hath selected this temple to be Thy dwelling place,
from whence as from Thy throne of mercy and grace
Thou dost dispense to all, with extraordinary liberality,
Thy benefits and the blessings of Thy Good Counsel.
O Brightest Star, Who dost guide us over the boisterous sea of our life.
Purest Star which doth comfort us in all the distresses of our exile.
Most sweet Star which doth recreate and inundate our hearts
with joy and gladness, we devoutly salute Thee.
Evviva Maria! Evviva Maria of Good Counsel !
Animated with sweet hope and with the greatest confidence,
we come to Thee, O Dearest Mother, and we rest secure
we shall obtain from Thy goodness abundantly,
the fruit of this our pilgrimage.

Three Hail Marys are then recited.

Prayer to Our Lady of Good Counsel from the Raccolta

MOST glorious Virgin, chosen by the Eternal Counsel to be the Mother of the Eternal WORD made Man, treasure-house of divine graces and advocate of sinners; I, the most unworthy of thy servants, have recourse to thee, begging of thee to be my guide and counsellor in this vale of tears. Obtain for me, through the most Precious Blood of thy Divine Son, forgiveness of my sins, and the salvation of my soul with all the means necessary to secure it. Obtain for Holy Church triumph over her enemies and the extension of the Kingdom of JESUS CHRIST over the whole earth. Amen.

Sources: “The Virgin Mother of Good Counsel: a history of the ancient sanctuary of our Lady of Good Counsel in Genazzano, and of the wonderful apparition and miraculous translation of her sacred image from scutari in Albania to Genazzano in 1467” by MONSIGNOR GEORGE F. DILLON, D.D. Published in 1884.

The image of Our Lady of Good Counsel by Bartolomé Pérez:

THE RACCOLTA (Or Collection of Indulgenced Prayers & Good Works)

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