Special Event to commemorate the 200th
Anniversary of the victory of the
United States of America at the Battle of New Orleans,
through the intercession of Our Lady of Prompt Succor!
On Thursday, January 8 at 4 pm,
Archbishop Gregory Aymond will celebrate the 200th Mass of thanksgiving
Our Lady of Prompt Succor at the National Shrine dedicated to her honor on
State St. on the campus of the Ursuline Academy. All are invited to attend.
As New Orleans and the nation celebrate the Bicentennial of
the Battle of New Orleans, the archbishop, the Ursuline Sisters and the faithful
of New Orleans gather to honor a promise made by the Ursulines on January 8,
1815 to hold a Mass annually on that date in thanksgiving for the miraculous
victory at the battle. For as the men went to battle, the women went to pray
with the Ursulines at their
convent on Chartres St. As Father Dubourg celebrated Mass at dawn, during
communion, a messanger came and announced "Victory is Ours"! Many, including
General Andrew Jackson attribute the unlikely, miraculous victory to the
power of prayer.
This story is told now at the Old Ursuline Convent Museum
through the exhibition titled Praying for a Miracle: the Catholic Church and
the Battle of New Orleans. The exhibit is open thruogh May 2015, but those
wishing to experience as part of the Bicentennial celebrations may do so free of
charge January 7, 8 and 9.
The National Shrine of Our Lady of Prompt Succor is located
at 2701 State St. in New Orleans.
About Our Lady
of Prompt Succor
Other names and titles by which Our Lady of Prompt Succor is known
- Also known as
- Notre Dame de Bon Secours
- Our Lady of Quick Help
nuns founded a
monastery in New Orleans,
Louisiana, and organized their area
schools from it. In
Louisiana became a
possession, and Spanish sisters came to assist. In
the territory reverted back to France, and the
sisters fled in the face of France anti-Catholicsm. In
Mother Saint Andre Madier requested reinforcements in the form of more sisters from France. The relative to whom she wrote, Mother Saint Michel, was running a Catholic boarding school for girls.
short-handed due to the repressions of the French Revolution, declined to send any sisters. Mother Saint Michel was given permission to appeal to the
pope was a
of Napoleon, and it seemed unlikely he would even receive her letter of petition. Mother Saint Michel prayed,
O most Holy Virgin
if you obtain for me a prompt and favorable answer to this letter, I promise to have you honored at New Orleans under the title of Our Lady of Prompt Succor.
and sent her letter on
Against all odds, she received a response on
granted her request, and Mother Saint Michel, commissioned a statue of Our Lady of Prompt Succor holding the Infant Jesus.
Fournier blessed the statue and Mother's work.
Mother Saint Michel and several postulants came to New Orleans on
They brought the statue with them, and placed it in the
chapel. Since then, Our Lady of Prompt Succor has interceded for those who have sought her help.
A great fire threatened the Ursuline
A lay sister brought the statue to the window and Mother Saint Michel prayed
Our Lady of Prompt Succor, we are lost if you do not come to our aid.
The wind changed direction, turned the fire away, and saved the
interceded again at the Battle of New Orleans in
Many faithful, including wives and daughters of American soldiers, gathered in the Ursuline chapel before the statue of
Our Lady of Prompt Succor, and spent the night before the battle in prayer. They asked
for victory by Andrew Jackson’s forces over the British, which would save the city from being sacked. Jackson and 200 men from around the South won a remarkable victory over a superior British force in a battle that lasted twenty-five minutes, and saw few American casualties.
It is still customary for the devout of New Orleans to pray before the statue of Our Lady of Prompt Succor whenever a hurricane threatens
- The State of Louisiana
- The Archdiocese of New Orleans, Louisiana
- The City of New Orleans, Louisiana