Tuesday, October 12, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Aparecida. I thought I would include this in my blog because it is such a huge feast day and national holiday in Brasil.
Our Lady of Aparecida is the patron saint of Brazil. She is represented by a short, dark, wooden statue of the Virgin Mary, currently housed in the Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida, in the town of Aparecida, São Paulo. Her feast day has been observed as a public holiday since Pope John Paul II consecrated the Basilica in 1980. The Basilica is the fourth most popular Marian shrine in the world, being able to hold up to 45,000 worshippers.
This day is also called "Childrens Day". Children receive presents from their parents and close relatives. Also, some projects are made for helping poor and homeless children around the country.
Click on the link to get the full history of the Nossa Senhora Apareceida. It's quite interesting. Here is the common prayer used for Our Lady Aparecida.
Lady Aparecida, a son of yours who belongs to you unreservedly–totus tuus–called by the mysterious plan of Providence to be the Vicar of your Son on earth, wishes to address you at this moment. He recalls with emotion, because of the brown color of this image of yours, another image of yours, the Black Virgin of Jasna Gora.
Mother of God and our Mother, protect the Church, the Pope, the bishops, the priests and all the faithful people; welcome under your protecting mantle men and women religious, families, children, young people, and their educations.
Health of the sick and Consoler of the afflicted, comfort those who are suffering in body and soul; be the light of those who are seeking Christ, the Redeemer of all; show all people that you are the Mother of our confidence.
Queen of Peace and Mirror of Justice, obtain peace for the world, ensure that Brazil and all countries may have lasting peace, that we will always live together as brothers and sisters and as children of God. Our Lady Aparecida, bless all your sons and daughters who pray and sing to you here and elsewhere.