Mary’s Miraculous Medal Family

People often wonder about the link between the Vincentians and the Miraculous Medal.

Vincentians have a special relationship with Mary under the title of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. It began in 1830 when Our Lady first appeared to St. Catherine Labouré, a young Daughter of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul.

Mary appeared to St. Catherine in the Motherhouse Chapel at Rue du Bac in Paris, France. Mary revealed the mission of having a Medal made and instructed St. Catherine that those who wear this Medal should “Come to the foot of this altar. Here, graces will be spread over all who ask for them with confidence and fervor. These rays are a symbol of the graces that I pour out on those who ask them of me.”

Until her death, St. Catherine was silent about these apparitions as Our Lady instructed her. She revealed them only to her confessor, a Vincentian priest. Once he was convinced that the visions were true, he arranged for the Medals to be produced and distributed throughout Europe.

The Medal’s official name is “The Medal of the Immaculate Conception.” It quickly grew in popularity as many people experienced blessings, graces, and miracles. They soon began referring to the Medal as “The Miraculous Medal.”

One of our most important missions as Vincentians is to assist in spreading this devotion around the world. Thus, we are known as “stewards” or “caretakers” of the Miraculous Medal.

In 1915, Fr. Joseph A. Skelly, CM, founded the Central Association of the Miraculous Medal (CAMM) in Germantown, Philadelphia. He desired to render honor to Our Lady and help spread devotion to the Miraculous Medal. In 1927, he added the beautiful statue of the Immaculate Conception to St. Vincent’s Seminary Chapel in Germantown, creating the Miraculous Medal Shrine.

Fr. Skelly also began holding nine-day Novenas to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. These proved so popular and eventually he began a weekly Miraculous Medal Perpetual Novena service. The first was held on Monday, December 8, 1930, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, in honor of the 100th Anniversary of the Miraculous Medal apparitions.

Our faithful have been gathering to pray this Novena consistently at the Shrine every Monday since that date. The Novena began a global phenomenon, both in person and online, as the faithful ask Our Lady to pray for their intentions, and experience the peace and joy of Mary’s motherly love and the beauty of this holy place.

We invite you to join us in honoring Our Lady by asking her to pray for all your intentions through the Miraculous Medal Novena Prayers.


Mother Mary embraces all who comes to her and unites us in a worldwide Family of Prayer – Mary’s Miraculous Medal Family. We invite you to learn more about this legacy of grace given to us through the Miraculous Medal.


Another Vincentian Priest, Fr. Martin J. Blake, CM, encouraged devotion to Our Blessed Mother under her title, Our Lady of Angels. In 1918, he introduced Novenas to her through Our Lady of Angels Association, which is based at Niagara University, where Our Lady of Angels is the patroness.

Our Lady plays a central role in our Vincentian Mission. We rely on the graces obtained through Mary’s Family of Prayer that support us. We welcome all to learn of the great intercessory power of the Mother of God, and wish to inspire people to turn to her with confidence.