RMG - April 18: 150th foundation of Association of Mary Help of Christians

15 April 2019

(ANS - Rome) - "The undersigned humbly exposes to your Most Reverend Excellency that for the sole desire of promoting the glory of God and the good of souls a pious union of the faithful should be started under the name of Association of the Mary Help of Christians in the Church of Mary Help of Christians which thou consecrated a year ago; its main purpose would be to promote veneration of the Blessed Sacrament and devotion to Mary Auxilium Christianorum: a title that seems to return with vivid pleasure to the august Queen of Heaven."

It was with these words that Don Bosco asked the archbishop of Turin, Msgr. Alessandro Ottaviani Riccardi, for the authorization to establish the Association of Mary Help of Christians (ADMA), with the aim of promoting the faith of the Christian people. On 18 April 1869, the archbishop decreed the canonical erection of the Association, which marked the beginning of the second group founded by Don Bosco.

In the same year, in order to expand the association, Don Bosco wrote a booklet "Association of devotees of Mary Help of Christians canonically erected in the Church dedicated to her in Turin", in response to the numerous requests to establish an association of the faithful "who joined in the same spirit of prayer and piety to pay homage to the great Mother of the Savior invoked with the beautiful title of Help of Christians."

Membership to ADMA commits to participating in Don Bosco's mission above all by spreading Marian popular devotion as an instrument of evangelization and promotion among the working class classes and youth most in need.

It is significant that the foundation's 150th anniversary coincides with Holy Thursday, underlining how the Eucharistic cult is, with the devotion to the Immaculate Conception, the founding point for the spirituality and life of the Association. The 150th anniversary of ADMA's foundation will be particularly remembered in the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians in Turin, during the Eucharistic adoration of Holy Thursday, as well as in the 800 local groups across the globe.

Confirmed with the celebration of the 150th anniversary is the wish formulated by Don Bosco himself in 1869: "The holy Virgin Mary, who in so many ways [different ways] has blessed and favored those who have begged her with the precious title of Help of Christians, continue to spread the heavenly treasures copiously, not only over the aggregates to this pious Association, but above all those who will invoke it in their spiritual or temporal needs, as a sign that all have reasons to bless it above the earth, to then go and praise her one day and thank her eternally in heaven."


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