Pope Francis' favorite titles of the Virgin Mary
Out of the many titles the Church has for Mary, Pope Francis has a special devotion to a particular few and these have played an important role in his pontificate. His visits to pray in front of these images are a sign of his trust in Mary. This is how he responded when journalists asked him about his prayer intentions following his visit to the Virgin of Guadalupe in Mexico.
But things that a son tells his mother are secret, right?
The Pope has repeatedly talked about his devotion to Our Lady Undoer of Knots. It is a German title for Mary he learned about during his time in the country. After this trip, he returned to Argentina with an image of the Virgin for his parish. It shows the Virgin of the Immaculate Conception untying the knots that the devil ties in the world.
During his trip to Japan, Pope Francis became particularly fond of the Virgin of Nagasaki. It is a statue of Mary that was burnt by the atomic bomb yet remains intact. This is how the he prayed in front of her image in 2019.
Nagasaki bears in its soul a wound difficult to heal, a scar born of the incomprehensible suffering endured by so many innocent victims of wars past and those of the present, when a third World War is being waged piecemeal. Let us lift our voices here and pray together for all those who even now are suffering in their flesh from this sin that cries out to heaven.
The first Marian image he visited after being elected pope was Our Lady of the Snows, located in St. Mary Major. Her feast is celebrated on August 5. In 358, the Virgin asked Pope Liberius to build a basilica to venerate her image. In the middle of summer, snow miraculously fell on the site where it was to be built.
But, there is still one Marian image closer to home. In the Vatican gardens, there is a replica of the Virgin of Lourdes. Pope John Paul II used to pray his rosary in front of it every day. Like him, Pope Francis continues to pray at the Grotto.