OUR LADY OF CONFIDENCE – Patron in Time of Crisis
Photography from the Miraculous Madonna Della Fiducia Image,
At the Tabernacle of Pontifical Seminario Romano Maggiore
Photography by Don Fabio Salerno
Madonna Della Fiducia is the Patroness of the Pontifical Seminario Romano Maggiore (Pontifical Seminary Major of Rome). Our Lady of Confidence is also traditionally believed as a patron of chastity, patron of seminarian, patron of priesthood, and patron of the believers in times of crisis.
Our Lady of Confidence, also known as La Madonna della Fiducia or Our Lady of Trust is a venerated image depicting the Blessed Virgin Mary. The feast of Our Lady of Confidence falls on the last Saturday prior to Lent.
Pope Innocent X granted a Canonical coronation to the image on 14 October 1838 via Cardinal Carlo Odescalchi at the requested petition of the Roman seminarians. In addition, Pope Pius X was particularly devoted to Mary under this title, drawing his pontificate many times.
Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title Our Lady of Confidence can be traced back to Sr. Chiara Isabella Fornari who was a Poor Clare in Todi, Italy. The image is especially noteworthy in that Christ points to his mother, and Mary’s intercession is typically invoked through the short prayer “Mater Mea, Fiducia Mea” (My Mother, My Confidence). Plenty of miraculous favors has granted through this short prayer of Madonna Della Fiducia.
Originally this Madonna was located at the Jesuit Collegio Romano, where it is believed she protected the seminarians from the Asiatic flu epidemic of 1837, which claimed many lives in Rome. To repay her, the seminarians crowned both Mother and Child with golden bejeweled diadems. A later story relates that when over one hundred seminarians were conscripted during World War I and forced into the armed services of Italy, they placed themselves under her special care, and all returned home safely.
The Patroness of Rome’s Major Seminary is the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title Madonna della Fiducia. A miraculous copy of Our Lady of Confidence now resides at the Roman Major Seminary located in the Basilica of Saint John Lateran complex. This very image made by DelMar Atelier is the repro copy of this original miraculous copy at the chapel of Roman Major Seminary.
Pope John Paul II started the papal tradition of venerating this miraculous image each year, subsequently Pope Benedict XVI has carried on the tradition. During his visit on the feast day of Our Lady of Confidence on 9 February 2002, Pope John Paul II ended his time at the seminary commenting on the devotion his predecessors had to Mary under the title Madonna della Fiducia saying,
“We heard how Our Lady of Confidence guided the steps of Pope John XXIII on a path that brought him from this Seminary to the Second Vatican Council, which was also a great seminary, the seminary of the bishops of the world. Let us thank Our Lady of Confidence for all that she did to assist Pope John XXIII in the preparation for and in the adventure of the Second Vatican Council. I wish all of you the grace to find her guidance in your lives: from the image of Our Lady of Confidence to the goals that Providence foresees for you and even asks of you to be accomplished through you. Once again, thank you for thiswonderful evening. Many thanks.” – St. Pope John Paul II