Miraculous Medal and Chain, Sterling

This beautiful, sterling silver Miraculous Medal m... Read more

Buy Now

The Meaning of the Miraculous Medal

Mary's Design Symbolizes Key Elements of the Catholic Faith

Print this story

Share on Facebook

Share on Twitter


November 27 marks the 186th anniversary of the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, popularly known by Catholics the world over as the Miraculous Medal. The Miraculous Medal has a special place in the hearts of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception, since it paved the way for the Church's official declaration of the dogma in 1854.

The medal is striking because Our Lady herself presented the familiar design.

The front of the medal depicts Mary standing on a globe, with the head of a serpent beneath her feet. Circling the oval-shaped medal is the signature, "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee." On the reverse, 12 stars surround a large "M," from which a cross arises. Below the "M," the medal depicts two flaming hearts. The left heart, circled with thorns, represents Jesus. The right heart, pierced by a sword, symbolizes Mary.

An Unlikely Helper
By what intervention and through what vessel did the Blessed Mother convey the design of this medal? As in the case of the Divine Mercy revelations of St. Faustina, a young, unassuming nun in 1930s Poland, once again God chose an unlikely helper. Nearly 100 years earlier, He selected a 24-year-old novice in the community of Sisters known as the Daughters of Charity, Paris, France, in 1830.

The extraordinary story begins on the night of July 18, 1830, when a mysterious child awakens Sr. Catherine Laboure. The child leads her to the convent's chapel. There, Sr. Catherine sees the Virgin Mary sitting in a chair. She kneels beside Mary and rests her hands in the Virgin's lap. The two speak for several hours. During the conversation, Mary promises she will return and give the young nun "a mission." The child leads Catherine back to her bed. Catherine hears the clock strike 2 a.m., July 19.

A little more than four months later, Sr. Catherine learns what Mary wants.

During her evening meditation on Nov. 27, 1830, Catherine has a vision of Mary standing in a position similar to the depiction on the medal. Later, the vision changes to include the inscription found on the front side of the medal.

Mary speaks to Catherine, saying, "Have a medal struck upon this model. Those who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around their neck."

It was as Mary said. The medal's effects were immediate.

Iconic Attraction
The first medals were made in 1832 and distributed throughout Paris. According to the Association of the Miraculous Medal, the blessings that Mary promised "began to shower down" on wearers of the medal. The devotion spread rapidly. In 1836, a Church investigation declared the apparitions to be genuine.

Since Mary asked Catherine to have the medal struck, devotion to the Miraculous Medal has spread the world over, the image having achieved iconic stature.

But what does the medal mean? In answering that, one discovers why it works.

The Front Side
• Mary stands on a globe, crushing a serpent beneath her feet. Describing the original vision, Catherine said the Blessed Mother appeared radiant as a sunrise, "in all her perfect beauty."
• Rays shoot out from Mary's hands, which she told Catherine, "... symbolize the graces I shed upon those who ask for them."
• Words from the vision form an oval frame around Mary: "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee."
Seen as a matrix, the elements of the front design encapsulate major Marian tenets:

Quality of Our Lady As Illustrated by the Medal
Mother — Her open arms, the "recourse" we have in her.
Immaculate — The words, "conceived without sin."
Assumed into Heaven — She stands on the globe.
Mediatrix — Rays from her hands symbolizing "graces."
Our Protection — Crushes the serpent (Gn 3:15).

The Reverse Side
• A cross-and-bar surmounts a large, bold "M."
• 12 stars disperse around the perimeter.
• Two hearts are depicted underneath the "M," the left lapped with a crown of thorns, the right skewed by a sword. From each, a flame emanates from the top. Again, employing a grid analysis, we can see how the reverse-side design contains great symbolism reflecting major tenets of the Catholic faith.

Design Element and its Catholic Meaning
The large letter "M" — Mary as Mother, Mediatrix.
Cross and bar — Jesus' Cross of Redemption.
12 stars — 12 Apostles, who formed the first Church.
Left Heart — The Sacred Heart, who died for our sins.
Right Heart — The Immaculate Heart, who intercedes for us.
Flames — The burning love Jesus and Mary have for us.

The Association of the Miraculous Medal in Perryville, Missouri, notes that there is no superstition or magic connected with the Miraculous Medal, nor is it "a good luck charm." Rather, it is "a testimony to faith and the power of trusting prayer. Its greatest miracles are those of patience, forgiveness, repentance, and faith."

Print this story

Share on Facebook

Share on Twitter


Be a part of the discussion. Add a comment now!

Yoebo - Nov 27, 2016

I hope i have this precious pendant.

Klp - Nov 27, 2016

O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you. Please pray for good mental and physical health for my children.

genalin fe nasaria - Nov 27, 2016

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal....thank you for a miracle yesterday!
Pls pray for us sinners!

Bok - Nov 27, 2016

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception I pray to you for my mums health. May she have a full and swift recovery

lucena - Nov 27, 2016

please pray for my daughter Elizabeth Ann for her healing.

Wee - Nov 27, 2016

Mama Mary, Please stay by my side... I need you and want you to be near always, please help me know what to do next(in my life)

Yvette - Nov 27, 2016

Dear Mama Mary, please intercede for our family and all God's children. Grant us all the graces that we need and cover us with your mantle of maternal protection. Help us all to get to heaven. Amen.

Akos - Nov 27, 2016

God please heal my sun and save my marriage! Thank You.

Joyce - Nov 27, 2016

please pray for me and family. especially for my son calling and our education and marriage.

Myron Castelino - Nov 27, 2016

Dear Mother Mary, bless our Youth and our world Leaders. Forgive those who hurt others.

H❤️JMJ - Nov 27, 2016

Holy Mother, I want to be close to you and love you as you are so holy, good and precious to our Jesus❤️❤️❤️ Please Mother be close to me everyday of my life. I love you! I ask for your intercession on this day of the Miraculous Medal, of which I wear, that you may bless my future husband and prepare us to meet soon! Give me hope and trust above all else. Thank you and bless the intentions off all who recourse to you. Amen Amen!!

Roseann - Nov 27, 2016

Dear Mary Please pray and watch over my family Send our guardian angels down to watch over us

Marie N - Nov 27, 2016

Mother Mary into your arms I place JJBN, JM and AM pleae be a source of comfort to them. Guide them and mend their broken heart, body and soul. As your children they need your constant care in their difficult situations. Amen

julie - Nov 27, 2016

Pray for my family, health, wealth, love ,happiness and peace .

Marie - Nov 27, 2016

Oh Mary conceived without sin, Pray for my Children and Grand Children.

Jim - Nov 27, 2016

Holy Mother of Mercy, your Immaculate heart has been a true refuge for me during my illness, interfering before your son, imploring and obtaining the graces for me that have obtained stability and stability in my lab work and successful treatment of Retuxen. You have obtained the unification of the medicine of man with the medicine of mercy. Please ask Jesus to continue this grace of healing to me and that I may have a Merry and healthy Christmas

Annet - Nov 27, 2016

Mary mother of all graces, cover my family with your immaculate Heart and protect them from all evil.

H P - Nov 27, 2016

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal pray for me, my husband, my family, especially for my daughters.

Michael - Nov 28, 2016

Please pray for me Mary conceived without sin.

Kathy - Nov 28, 2016

Mother Mary, please pray that the feeling in my feet will come back

PLC - Nov 28, 2016

Dearest Mother Mary,
We pray for your intercession. Please grant us the healing of our mother from her illness. She is a devout follower and devotee of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, and hears mass daily at our parish church of the same name (you are our patron saint in our parish) --- her health allowing it. We believe in your miracles and trust in your mercy and intercession.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you
Blessed are you, among women
And blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God
Pray for us sinners,
Now and at the hour of our death
O Mary, conceived without sin,
Pray for us who have recourse to thee.

Karz - Nov 28, 2016

Mama Mary please heal my father of his ill .. please guide him coz I'm not on his side .. I love him so much mama Mary ..

Lori - Nov 28, 2016

Mama Mary, I beg for your help. Please intercede for my daughter. She needs your help now more than ever. She has so much emotional pain and suffering. Your heart was sorrowful watching your son suffer. Please be a mother to her now. I ask in Jesus name. amen

Diane - Nov 28, 2016

Oh my Blessed Mother, please watch over my friends and family. Keep them safe and devoted to you. Please help me be humble and to be worthy to see the light of your son's face when it is my time. Let me once again be reunited with my loved ones. Have mercy on us. Bless this country.

Poulter Family - Nov 28, 2016

Blessed Mother of Mercy, We Thankyou For Your Faith and Steadfast Courage and Blessing us With The King Of Kings..!! We Pray to you Through your Son to watch over our Family and to Always seek The Son of Man..Who is our Strength and our Rock..!! Mother please Bless our Family with your Sons Will..!!

Sandy - Nov 30, 2016

Blessed Mother Mary, I ask you for your gracious intercession for me and my family that your Divine Son, Jesus, grant us the healing that we need. Amen.

Punkin - Dec 3, 2016

Holy Mother, please don't give up on me, thank you for your unconditional love and mercy that I am not worthy of....Thank you for loving me and taking care of my loved ones ...in heaven, and my sweet Pu kin.

Cecilia - Dec 8, 2016

Mother Mary, please bless my daughter with a good loving husband. amen

Laura - Dec 14, 2016

Dearest Mother Mary, I dont want to ask for to much but if you would please pray for my mom's health to improve, my son to continue and alway remain healthy and my health to improve. Thank you. Bless you.

Joachim - Dec 18, 2016

Oh Mary Mother of sorrow and Mother of Mercy please pray for me to your Son Jesus to have Mercy on me.

kaylee - Dec 19, 2016

this is real. I just got released from the hospital after another long stay. My health throughout the years hasn't been in my favor. While in crucial pain in the bed a lady walked in and we prayed together. I immediately started crying and I could not figure out why. She had a little pouch on her and said that she has something for me she knew she saw it that morning as she dug in her purse. Out she pulled the medal with a pin to pin it somewhere. I had no where to pin it nor did I want to just pin it anywhere. She asked if I knew what I meant and I wasn't to sure at the time so she told me I will be healed and I'm not alone. Even told me I would maybe go home that day! she told me to look it up what it meant and read what a wonderful meaning it is. She left with blessings and I reached for my neck without remembering I was wearing a small chain necklace which was perfect so I put it on my necklace and I remember her telling me to never go anywhere without it. I did end up leaving that night and just now got to reading about this. Everything in faith came true. I'm still wearing it, I'm home, I'm nowhere near the pain I was in when in the hospital , I can walk just fine. Love the lord I am blessed

Joel H - Dec 23, 2016

Mother please let me know your presence. Let me know You are here. Amen

Toni - Dec 24, 2016

Blessed Mother please intercede for me to your beloved Son as he will grant your requests. Please ask Him to have the big developer that has sued us to settle and give us our 2.5 acres. I will put a glass chapel on it for all to pray to you in my Mary garden and be in harmony with God, your Son and the Holy Spirit in our beautiful woods. Please also help direct my beautiful children to find all the love you offer and follow all your spiritual direction. Finally, pray that my mother-in-law continue to get better so we can enjoy her here on earth much longer. I love you so much for how much peace, faith, hope and love you bring in return for simply spending time with you daily.

Your daughter, Carolyn - Jan 2, 2017

Dearest Mother, Immaculate, I offer you my spouse, my children, their spouses, their children and my brother and sister-in-law....and myself. May each one come to know you as Mother, as Mediatrix, as intercessor so that each of us may grow united to Your Heart and the Heart of Jesus, Savior. May each of us imitate Your Faith, Hope and Charity. Amen.

Jack - Jan 4, 2017

Dear Mother Mary, thank you for keeping me in your prayers. Thank you for keeping my family healthy and safe from any evil. Thank you for your passionate love. Amen

Janet - Jan 7, 2017

Blessed Mary please send a miracle to heal our unborn baby. Give us faith to trust in you during this most difficult time. Amen

js - Jan 11, 2017

O Mother Mary I trust in you. Please pray for my family, especially my son. Please send him your graces and allow him find your Son, Jesus, in his heart. I have faith that you will help him to rediscover God's love and mercy.

john mcl - Jan 15, 2017

Please give me the wisdom and strength to do the right thing day by day

Renee - Jan 16, 2017

Dear Mother Mary I love you. Thank you for your Yes! Please stay near to me always and show me how to love as you love your son. Bring me your miracles of patience, forgiveness, repentance, and faith. Intercede for the good of my relationships with my husband and sons (especially Jesse at this time). Stay near to my family and guide their hearts and deeds toward your son Jesus. I pray for their mental, spiritual & physical health.

Michelle - Jan 19, 2017

Holy Mother Mary, I love you and your Son Jesus so very much. Please bless us to conceive a healthy baby boy or girl. My husband has never had a child of his own and is a really good dad to my son. He deserves a baby of his own as well. And I want so much to have a baby that is from our beautiful marriage. Your Son Jesus, answered my prayers for a good husband, and I am so thankful and grateful. Please intercede on our behalf Mary, as this baby means a lot to us. Also, Your Son Jesus has blessed me to be able to go back to nursing school to get my RN. I am taking Chemistry this semester and it is hard for me, please open my mind and give me complete clarity of this subject. Thank You, in Jesus Almighty Name. AMEN

Joanne - Mar 4, 2017

Oh blessed mother, pray for us who indeed have recourse to thee. i would like to thank thee and thy son Jesus for this miraculous healing. what returns can i make to you blessed mother and my lord Jesus? Thank you so much, and please, continue interceding for your lost children especially those who have left the catholic church and you in search of the "holy spirit."pray for us.

KM - Mar 7, 2017

Mother Mary please intercede to your Son for my family, especially my daughter. Help her to grow closer to you and to increase her faith in your Son. I pray for her to excel in her studies and to have patience when she doesn't understand.

Vijay and Cheryl - Mar 13, 2017

oh Holy Mother, pray for me and my family so we will be united again. Pray for my daughters that they will not be affected by the harsh circumstances they are going through now. Please complete you plan and heal us of our misery .

Jerrin B. Mathew - Mar 24, 2017

our lady of immaculate conceptions help me in times of temptation and strengthen me to fight against masturbation. So that I may be saved. I pray for my board exams especially maths because its my weakest. Mother be with me amen

Mae - Mar 26, 2017

Please watch over my family and guide us in making the right decisions in our daily lives. Please teach me to raise happy kids with loving hearts. Please pray for those who have died especially my father, father-in-law. I am grateful for the life I have. I also pray for the baptism of my husband in the near future. Amen.

Joshua C - Mar 30, 2017

Mother marry, please guide me through this journey of life without sin, and with a joyful experience.

Lydia Ryan - Apr 12, 2017

Why I am writing this testimony is because I made a promise that whosoever that helps me out of my relationship predicament deserves to be known even more by the world. I am 37 years of age, my husband had a very powerful love spell on him that a female he knows put on him and I wanted it removed as this caused serious problems in our marriage and he left me for her. It seemed nothing on earth can bring our paths together forever, I felt really bad because I love him so dearly. I had sleepless nights because I missed my hubby’s touch and care. I seldom visit this webpage but anytime I do, I see two or more positive reviews about a man named dr. Adoda and his mysterious and miraculous works that saves relationships and marriages, this got me curious. Also, I normally see other several reviews, although I learn't that there are lots of scammers out there but I contacted Adoda because I was convinced by a testifier I contacted, that dr. Adoda spell is the big deal. I gave him a chance out of my doubting spirit but to my greatest surprise my husband called me 2 days after dr. Adoda did his thing on him and my hubby’s behalf, that he is so sorry for all the pains he has made me pass through, he wanted to be back home. Presently our love is more than that of Romeo and Juliet, he takes too good care of me now, 110% than before. I know there are others out there, I say if you find dr.adodalovespelltemple@gmail.com then your problem is as well solved. Lydia Ryan W. from California, USA

Glen - Apr 20, 2017

Between the age of 14 & 16 years, I found one of these pendants on the floor of the restaurant of which I was employed as I was sweeping. I don't remember anyone else being in the dining area at the time to ask to see if it belonged to them so I placed it in my wallet and kept it. I just now found this site as I searched the Internet for the pendant's meaning, of which I still have. I am grateful for this site as it has helped me to understand a bit more of it's meaning. Thank you and God bless you!