The Miraculous Medal was revealed to Saint Catherine Laboure in Paris, France at the Motherhouse of the Daughters of Charity. The Miraculous Medal is also called the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, and the year that it was shown to Saint Catherine was 1830. Saint Catherine was taught about the Church and Christianity by Saint Louise and Saint Vincent.
Saint Catherine was always blessed with apparitions from God of different saints. She sometimes even reported having visions of Christ after receiving the Eucharist. However, for the very first time in 1830 she was given the privilege of seeing visions of the Virgin Mary.
Saint Catherine said that she saw Mary with her feet placed on a white globe with rings made of precious stones giving off a brilliant, bright light. Mary then spoke to Catherine and told her that the awesome lights she was seeing were graces that Mary allowed people to have because they asked her for them. She also said that the stones not giving off light like the other ones were graces that people had not remembered to ask her for. Then a bright, circle of light surrounded Mary and “O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you”, appeared around the edges of the circle in bright golden writing. Mary told Saint Catherine that she should get a medal made after the vision that she had just seen, and that anybody who wore it would be blessed by her. Pendants
After Mary had ceased to exist as a vision to Catherine, she looked at a table in the room and saw an image on it. This is where the back of the Miraculous Medal comes from. There was a big, capital M on the table with a cross and two hearts below it. These two hearts have taken the meaning of the hearts of Mary and her son Jesus. Jesus’ heart is the one with a crown of thorns on it, while Mary’s is the one being poked by a large sword. Championship Rings
The front of the Miraculous Medal stands for the always available helping hand that Mary lends to anybody who prays to her for support. The beams of shining light that came from Mary’s rings stand for the awesome graces that Mary wished to share with all people who wear her Miraculous Medal. Custom Medal
Saint Catherine made sure that she did as Mary wanted her to and had the medal made just as she had described it. Catherine made sure that the medal was distributed to all those who wished to purchase one. The medal helped many people receive grace from Mary and begin praying more often to her. Eventually the name of the medal would change from the Medal of the Immaculate Conception to the more common, present-day name of the Miraculous Medal.
For her acts in helping the Miraculous Medal come into existence, Catherine was canonized a saint on July 27, 1947 by Pope Pius XII. We all owe Catherine for beginning the circulation of this medal and bringing all those who wear it that much closer to Mary.