Our Lady of Good Success

Our Lady of Good Success

Our Lady of Good Success, also called as Our Lady of Good Events (Spanish: Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso; Filipino: Ina ng Mabubuting Pangyayari) is one of the titles of Blessed Virgin Mary. This title is shared among numerous images around the world — a number of images in Spain, one in Quito, Ecuador, and one in Parañaque, Philippines. It is claimed that Quito's image had produced an apparition - to Mother Mariana de Jésus Torres.




Our Lady of Good Success in Madrid, Spain

Two Spanish friars, Brothers Gabriel de Fontaned and Guillermo de Rigosa traveled to Rome to meet the Pope for the approval of their order (The Order of Minims for the Service of the Sick or The Order of Saint Francis of Paola).[1] As they were passing through the town of Traigueras (under the jurisdiction of Tortosa in the Principate of Cataluña), a furious storm descended upon them. The brothers prayed for God's guidance and help. Immediately they saw a mysterious light coming from a cave in a cliff. Climbing up, they entered and found a beautiful statue of the Virgin Mary holding the Baby Jesus in her arms. They reported being surrounded by shimmering lights and fragrant scents. As no one claimed the statue, the two carried it with them, hoping that the Blessed Mother would help in getting approval for their order.

On arriving in Rome, the brothers were worried that they might not obtain papal consent. However, Pope Paul V on hearing the story of their journey, knelt before the statue and placed his pectoral cross around the its neck. As he embraced and kissed the statue, he said:

“Look Brothers! She is smiling! Why does she smile so? What good success you have had on this journey! There is no doubt that Our Lady has deigned to protect and support you in your work. Therefore it will not be me that will go against Her. May all of your efforts obtain good success!” [2]

He then blessed it and christened her Our Lady of Good Success. The image was placed in the Royal Hospital of Madrid. Here, the image became famous "for the numerous favors granted by Heaven through her".[1] In 1641??, Philip III ordered the construction of the Sanctuary of the Puerta del Sol. This enshrines the image renowned among the churches of Madrid. Soon, as its popularity and devotion spread, the image is replicated and placed in different places in Spain: Orduña, La Puebla de Gordon, Tudela, Abla, and among others.[3]

Quito, Ecuador

Our Lady of Good Success in Quito, Ecuador

Five religious sisters traveled from Spain to Quito, Ecuador to start the first convent. Mariana de Jésus Torres, one of the young nuns, saw the Blessed Mother herself. She asked her if she would be willing to offer her life for the sins of the Twentieth century. She was also given the choice to stay in heaven or earth. Mariana decided to stay.

On February 2, 1610, as Mariana was praying to the Blessed Mother, she appeared to her and stated:

“I am Mary of Good Success, whom you have invoked with such tender affection. Your prayer has pleased me very much. Your faith has brought me here. Your love has invited me to visit you.…."[citation needed]

Mary told Mother Mariana some prophecies which will happen in the Twentieth Century, particularly about the corruption, oppression and unavailability of the sacraments and also crisis in the clergy.

Our Lady of Good Success commanded a statue to be made to her likeness stating:

“…now I ask and command you to have a statue to be made for the consolation and preservation of my convent and for those faithful souls of that epoch during which there will be a great devotion to me, for I am the Queen of Heaven under many invocations…With the making of this statue I will favor not only my convent, but also the people of Quito—and all the people throughout the centuries.” [4]
Mother Mariana, The Lily of Quito

Our Lady of Good Success also told Mother Mariana that this statue was to be made, for these reasons:

“First so that men in the future might realize how powerful I am in placating Divine Justice and obtaining mercy and pardon for every sinner who comes to me with a contrite heart. For I am the Mother of Mercy and in me there is only goodness and love.”
“And second …when tribulations of spirit and sufferings of the body oppress them and they seem to be drowning in this bottomless sea let them gaze at my holy image and I will always be there ready to listen to their cries and soothe their pain. Tell them that they should always run to their Mother with confidence and love...” [5]

Over the course of ten years Mother Mariana struggled with the issue of completing the statue. Many obstacles prevented its sculpting. One obstacle was a fear of idolatry on the part of the native people in Quito. Another was Mother Mariana’s personal fear of not being believed and thus putting the convent in jeopardy. There was already an upheaval in the convent caused by an unfaithful and rebellious sister who incited other sisters against Mother Mariana and the sisters who were faithful to the rules of their order. This sister was known as “La Capitana” (the Captain). Mother Mariana was mystically informed of the horrible state of this sister's soul. She desired to save her from eternal damnation; however, the only solution given to Mother Mariana was that she, herself, would have to take on the sufferings and punishments of hell that this sister would have to endure in hell had Mother Mariana not interceded for her. This she was to bear for five long years. Mother Mariana agreed to this sentence. She was the picture of virtue during this time and no one but her confessor knew of the tormented life she led at this time. As a result of Mother Mariana’s years of suffering “La Capitana” finally repented. For the remainder of her life she did penance for the sins she had committed.

In the year 1610, she asked the permission of the Bishop to create the statue. He agreed for he'd dreamt that his life depended on it. The sculpting of the statue of Our Lady of Good Success was given to Francisco del Castillo. Castillo was chosen as he was a talented sculptor and a devotee of the Blessed Mother. As he was adding the finishing touches, Castillo went out to purchase some paints for the faces of the Virgin Mary and the Child Jesus.

Miraculous completion of the statue

Our Lady of Good Success completed the statue together with the archangels and St. Francis of Assisi

While Castillo was away, Mother Mariana and the other sisters went to the choir loft to beseech Our Lady to keep her promise. Afterwards, Mother Mariana was alone praying in the choir loft. Suddenly, Our Lady of Good Success appeared with the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael along with St. Francis of Assisi. The archangels bowed down to Mary and sang a prayer:

"Hail to Thee, Mary Most Holy Daughter of God the Father” (St. Michael)
"Hail to Thee, Mary Most Holy Mother of God the Son” (St. Gabriel)
”Hail to Thee, Mary Most Holy, Most Pure Spouse of the Holy Ghost” (St. Raphael)
“Hail to Thee, Mary Most Holy Temple and Sacrarium of the Most Holy Trinity” (All three Archangels) [6]

With this, the statue of Our Lady was completed. The statue became animated as Mary walked into the statue itself. Our Lady of Good Success began to sing the “Magnificat”. This occurred on the morning of January 16, 1611 at 3:00 AM. A choir of heavenly spirits began to sing “Salve Sancta Parens” which awakened the rest of the convent. The sisters rushed to the choir loft and found the statue transformed and surrounded by a heavenly light.

The statue of Our Lady of Good Success was blessed on February 2, 1611. On that day, she was placed above the seat of the Abbess chair at her own specific request as a sign to all that she was the one who governed and watched over the convent. Her official title being that of “Mary of Good Success of the Purification”.

Burning out of Sanctuary Light

Our Lady of Good Success appeared to Mother Mariana

On February 2, 1634, 23 years after the first apparition, Our Lady of Good Success appeared again to Mother Mariana. As Mother Mariana was praying in the upper choir loft before the Blessed Sacrament, the Sanctuary lamp went out. Mother Mariana was left in complete darkness. This apparition concerned terrible things that would happen during these latter times.

Our Lady of Good Success told Mother Mariana that a time of great evil would fall upon the Catholic Church. The general theme concerned a lax and perverse clergy. Many members of the Catholic clergy would "become as thieves", stealing the tabernacle light of Faith, which belongs to every Catholic by virtue of their baptism in the Church. Furthermore,she was told, they would rob Catholics of: Doctrine, Dogma and Tradition. Ransacking the Church as it were and leaving Catholics in darkness, without even the light from the Sanctuary lamp. Our Lady of Good Success explained in detail that there were five reasons for this extinguishing of the light:

  • The first reason was that towards the end of the 19th Century and through the 20th Century, heresies would prevail - not only in Ecuador but universally: “As these heresies spread out and become dominant, the precious light of Faith will be extinguished in souls by the almost total corruption of customs.” [7]
  • The second reason was that in the days to come the Conceptionist community itself would shrink and become infected with bad attitudes and false charity as a result of the pervading situation in the Church. Many vocations would be lost as a direct result: “The faithful souls will suffer a continuous and slow martyrdom - weeping in secret and imploring that those dire times be shortened.” [8]
  • The third reason the lamp failed was because during the prophesied century, the 20th, a worldwide campaign against the virtues of chastity, and purity would succeed in corrupting the youth. Our Lady of Good Success stated, “There will be few virgin souls left in the world”[9]
  • The fourth reason the lamp was put out was to demonstrate how the Masons and other secret sects would have so much influence on society and even within the Church. “During these unfortunate times,” she foretold, “evil will invade childhood innocence. In this way, vocations to the priesthood will be lost, resulting in a true calamity.” Our Lady of Good Success foresaw that there would still be some good, faithful religious who would be willing to suffer for the salvation of souls and life of the Holy Catholic Church. However, “The clergy will leave much to be desired because priests will become careless in their sacred duties. Lacking the divine compass, they will stray from the road traced by God for the priestly ministry, and they will become attached to wealth and riches, which they will unduly strive to attain. How the Church will suffer during this dark night! Lacking a prelate and a father to guide them, many priests will lose their spirit, placing their souls in great danger.” [9]
    Our Lady affirmed that the remaining faithful priests upholding the Faith in the times ahead would suffer greatly. “Against them the impious will wage a cruel war, overwhelming them with vituperations, calumnies and vexations in order to stop them from fulfilling their ministry. But they, like firm columns, will remain unswerving and will confront everything with a spirit of humility and sacrifice with which they will be vested, by virtue of the infinite merits of my most Holy Son, Who will love them in the innermost fibers of His Most Holy and Tender Heart. Our Lady of Good Success implored that the people of this time should “clamor insistently” to the Heavenly Father for an end to ‘these ominous times’ sending to the Church a prelate and father who would restore the spirit to the priests”.[9]
  • The fifth reason for lamp going out is the uncharitability of those who have the financial means to help the Church but who do nothing. Their miserly attitude toward God and His Church will allow evil to seemingly triumph.

After seeing the visions, Mother Mariana fainted and remained unconscious. The doctor declared that her death was imminent but she woke up within a few days and regained her health.

Parañaque, Philippines

Our Lady of Good Success in Parañaque, Philippines
Newly restored image

The history of Our Lady of Good Success in Parañaque was based on the writings of Father Nicolas de San Pedro, OSA, the vicar of St. Andrew's Parish (today Cathedral Parish of St. Andrew).

The Augustinian fathers brought the image from Spain as a gift from the King to the Filipinos converts. The Augustinians stayed in Palanyag (Parañaque) and built St. Andrew's Parish in 1580, the same year the image was delivered. Her image was left untouched and covered with dust. Catig, a poor native from Don Galo, saw this and asked the sacristan if he could take the statue home. This was granted and Catiq took the statue to his house, lighting votive candles to honor the Virgin.

As Catig lay dying on his bed, his neighbors called Fr. Juan de Guevarra to deliver last rites. Upon blessing Catig, Fr. Guevarra saw the statue standing near the bed. He asked Catig for the her in exchange of PHP 24 (Note that peso was costly during the Spanish era in the Philippines.) At first, Catiq refused but then changed his mind knowing that she should be revered by the people. Father Guevarra took the statue and placed it in his room after Catiq had died.[10]

In the room, according to Fr. Guevarra, a miracle happened: a mysterious light emanated from her image, and he heard glorious hymns. Fr. Guevarra concluded that the image was miraculous.[11]

Enthronement to the altar

Father Guevarra reported the miracle immediately to the superior of the Augustinians, Father Alonzo de Mentrida. Upon hearing the words of the friar, he ordered that the icon be transported to St. Andrew's Church. On August 10, 1625, a great procession was held, and the image was mounted over the altar.[11]

The people of Palanyag assembled and voted to give the icon a name. Each suggested a title on a piece of paper and dropped it into a box held by an eight-year-old boy. The title "Our Lady of Good Events" (Buen Suceso) was chosen by six people and the image thus obtained its name.[12]

Archbishop Miguel Garcia Serrano and some of the officials of Manila joined to venerate the Lady's image. It was said that Archbishop Serrano is the first one to create the novena and reconstructed the altar. After the reconstruction, another feast was celebrated on February 22, 1626. Many went to the celebration, not only the ones who live in Parañaque, but also the neighboring provinces.

Canonical coronation

The image of Our Lady of Good Success was canonically crowned as "The Patroness of the City of Parañaque" on September 8, 2000, the same day as the feast of the Virgin Mary's birth. Many joined in the celebration: parishioners, local government officials, and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, before she became president. After the Lady was crowned, people shouted, "Viva la Virgen!" (Long live the Virgin!) After the mass, a procession was held with the statue of Our Lady.[13] Our Lady of Good Success serves as the patroness of the Diocese of Parañaque; followed by St. Andrew the Apostle, the patron of the Cathedral.


In Ecuador and Spain, her feast day is celebrated on February 2, the day Our Lady of Good Success appeared to Mother Mariana along with the archangels and St. Francis of Assisi (thus coinciding with the Feast of the Purification). In Parañaque, the feast day was on August 10, the day when the our lady was enthroned.

Solemn Procession

Highlight of the procession will be the singing of the “Gozos dela Virgen del Buen Suceso” by the luna hermosa, who will serenade the Virgen from a balcony along the route of the procession.



  1. ^ a b Urrate, José (2003). Introduction to the Novena to Our Lady of Good Success. http://www.traditioninaction.org/OLGS/D002olgs_Introduction_2.htm.  Trans. Horvat, Marian Theresa.
  2. ^ Montes, Carlos. La Sonrisa de la Señora - Historia de la Virgen del Buen Suceso.
  3. ^ Horvat, Marian Theresa. Our Lady of Good Success - Quito, Ecuador
  4. ^ Our Lady of Good Success –Prophecies for Our Times,1st Edition, pg. 44
  5. ^ Stories and Miracles of Our Lady of Good Success, pg. 25
  6. ^ Stories and Miracles of Our Lady of Good Success, pg. 55
  7. ^ Our Lady of Good Success –Prophecies for Our Times,1st Edition, pg. 50
  8. ^ Our Lady of Good Success – Prophecies for Our Times, 1st Edition, pg. 51
  9. ^ a b c Our Lady of Good Success –Prophecies for Our Times, 1st Edition, pg. 52
  10. ^ Nobena sa Karangalan ng Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso, October 7, 1996, pg. 5-6
  11. ^ a b Nobena sa Karangalan ng Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso, October 7, 1996, pg. 6
  12. ^ Nobena sa Karangalan ng Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso, October 7, 1996, pg. 7
  13. ^ The Canonical Coronation of Nuestra Señora del Buen Suceso.

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