November 9

marian calendar     november

Virgen de la Almudena, Madrid, Spain

One story relates that Calocerus, a follower of St. James the Greater who came with him to Spain, brought the statue of the Virgin to Madrid in the year 38. Others claim that Nicodemus, who helped bury Jesus, carved the statue; that St. Luke the Evangelist painted it; and that Santiago (St. James) himself brought it from Jerusalem. 

A millennium later, Alfonso VI, having taken Toledo from the Moors, returned to Madrid. He ordered a nine-day prayer, or novena, culminating in a torchlight procession on November 9, 1085. As the group neared the Moorish citadel (al-mudaina), a block fell from the wall, revealing an image of the Virgin and Child, believed to be the old statue of apostolic times, hidden for safekeeping during the Islamic period. Repaired many times over the centuries, the statue is reluctant to reveal its age. The Virgin's head is older than the body, which is standing, whereas evidence indicates the statue of 1085 was seated. (Information from Real, Muy Ilustre y Primitiva Congregación de San Isidro de Naturales de Madrid, Picture of the statue in the Cathedral of Santa Maria la Real by Joaquin Hernandez, "MADRID on Flickr,"  

Also celebrated this date:

Santa Maria a Mare, Maiori, Salerno, Campania, Italy (St. Mary by the Sea). Town saved from flood, 1735. Commemorated 3rd Sun. in Nov. 
Santa Maria, Bedano, Ticino, Switzerland. Church inaugurated, 1367.
Our Lady of WuFongCi, Jiaoxi, Yilan, Taiwan. Apparition to mountain climbers, 1981. Pilgrimage site near waterfalls.

Where We Walked ~~~ Mary Ann Daly