An Important Clarification
from the Conceptionist Sisters in Quito
Mary of Good Success
September 23, 2017
Feast of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina
For over a decade I have travelled the world (North and South America, Europe, Australia) spreading devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the invocation Our Lady of Good Success.
The first question I always address is “What does the title Our Lady of Good Success mean?” because the English word “success” may suggest images of a Catholic version of the “Health and Wealth” Gospel. But that is only because of what is lost in the translation.
Therefore, it is with great joy that we receive the recent (August 2017) clarification issued by the Governing Council of the Real Monestario de la Inmaculada Conceptión for the English-speaking world.
The official title of Our Lady of Good Success (in Quito) is Nuestra Senora del Buen Suceso de la Purificación. This would translate literally as “Our Lady of the Good Event of the Purification”.
The good (or great) event in her title refers directly to the Purification or the Presentation of the Child Jesus in the Temple (Candlemas) in which Jesus was first offered to God the Father by the hands of the Blessed Virgin, foreshadowing His self-offering on the Cross and revealing Mary’s role as Co-Redemptrix.
According to the Sisters’ letter, “Her role as Co-Redemptrix did not begin at the foot of the Cross. But even at this moment [of the Presentation] she already acts in this capacity. Moreover, the offering of her Divine Son is accompanied with the complete offering of herself. Christ the Redeemer offering Himself; the Co-Redemptrix, the Virgin Mother of God, offering Christ; the Most Blessed Virgin completely offering herself. This is the greatest sacrifice to ever take place in the temple.”
Since the literal translation of her title is awkward in English, the Governing Council of the Real Monestario de la Inmaculada Conceptión - with the support of the Archbishop of Quito - have asked anglophone (and all other language) apostolates spreading the devotion to henceforth refer to Our Lady under her full title of “Buen Suceso of the Purification”—retaining the Spanish term.
The Sisters’ letter powerfully reminds us that Our Lady stated her chosen title would be the support and safeguard of the Faith during our “current crisis of Faith” which, according to the Sisters, is “characterized by the loss of the spirit of sacrifice and the true religious spirit of self-offering. This is the spirit the Catholic world needs to regain and protect. Learning this spirit from the youngest years would cause a resurgence in priestly and religious vocations. We should invoke Our Lady under this title to restore this spirit.”
So, praiseworthy as it is to pray for Our Lady’s intercession “to obtain success in our various endeavors”, we should not think this is the meaning of her title. It is “a misunderstanding to consider this title of Buen Suceso without joining it to the Purification.”
Here is a link where you can read (in English) the beautiful document from the Sisters signed by the newly elected Abbess, Sister Angela Maria Flores Romero, and other the governing sisters, as well as view a copy of the Archbishop’s letter (in Spanish). Mary of Buen Suceso of the Purification, pray for us.