Our Lady of Perpetual Help

(by Ginny Kubitz Moyer)
I was sitting at my prayer desk the other night, two flickering candles in front of me, letting my mind wander as I looked at the small framed icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help that once belonged to my grandmother. It’s an inexpensive framed image, one that she must have had since the 1960s at least, but in the candlelight it shone like pure gold. And as I looked at it – a picture I see every single day -- I noticed something. For the first time, I realized that Mary and Jesus were holding hands.

That moved me.

I’m forever reminding my kids to hold my hand. Anytime we’re in a parking lot or crossing a street, it comes out of my mouth automatically: “Hold my hand.” And the boy in question slips a sticky, damp little hand in mine, and off we go (unless it’s Luke, my little daddy’s boy, who invariably says, “No! I want to hold Daddy’s hand!” and runs over to Scott). I feel far more comfortable walking out in public that way, although the terrifying reality is that in a parking lot with huge cars backing out and turning corners, joined hands can only keep you so safe. But still, it’s something. And it always moves me when I don’t have to say it, when the boys automatically reach for my hand as we cross a street.

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Bishop of the Diocese of Manzini (Swaziland)

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