Ave Maria, lead us to Jesus!

©fb/an earthen vessel

(Painting Location: Holy Spirit Chapel, Divine Word Seminary Tagaytay, Philippines)

This adaptation of the “Sub tuum praesidium” (Under Your Patronage) is a reverred image at the western wing of the seminary chapel.

From the well-woven sceneries of the famous lake Taal with its “volcano” island from below, and ascending to the avant-garde facade of the SVD chapel with its iconic belltower, stands out the crowned Mary, sheltering the children of the world under her mantle, while carrying the child Jesus in her arms. 

Then from both sides, familiar men and women approach her.

Standing on one side (left) are the SVD saints, St.Joseph Freinademetz and St.Arnold Janssen. On the other side, the patroness of mission, St.Therese of Lisieux stands near the Blessed Mother with a “blue sister”, calling to mind also Blessed Maria Helena, the co-foundress of the Servants of the Holy Spirit sisters, who later took the name, Maria Virgo, as superior of the Servants of the Holy Spirit of Perpetual Adoration.

Now, with a new strobe lamp that bathes it warmly with solemn light, and festive flourescence behind it, this perennial tableau is the last memory that impresses on the mind and heart as one concludes the psalms of the night and leaves the temple to prepare oneself for a “restful night and a peaceful death.”

It had spoken to every soul, as it speaks continually still to all generations of SVDs, following after the first sons who beheld her first, up to this very day.

Hopefully, this “opus” done via the painting hands of Sr. Elisea Quinto, FMM, will continue to warm the heart of every “Verbita” in the years to come; embolden every soul who will turn towards our Lady and the Child at every holy hymn, and to fly to her patronage and protection, and to His Love and Mercy.

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