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“This world in which we live needs beauty in order not to sink into despair. Beauty, like truth, brings joy to the human heart, and is that precious fruit which resists the erosion of time, which unites generations and enables them to be one in admiration."

- Pope Paul VI

The statue of Our Lady Healer of Hearts was sculpted by internationally acclaimed master sculptor, Gregor Mussner, and the world- renowned artists of Mussner G. Vincenzo Art Studio. Located in Ortisei, in the Dolomite Mountains of northeastern Italy known as “the valley of woodcarvers,” Mussner’s art studio, was founded in 1892. The 126-year-old studio has received numerous awards and acknowledgements of excellence. In 1998, His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, commissioned Mussner to create a statue entitled, “Mary of Nazareth.”

 

Our Lady, Healer of Hearts stands 33” tall from head to toe - an inch for each year of Her Beloved Son’s life on earth. She stands atop clouds, giving the statue a total height of approximately 43”. Unlike typical depictions of the Blessed Mother, Our Lady Healer of Hearts has her arms outstretched, with hands cupped, holding a golden heart.

 

The gesture is rich in symbolism.

It serves as a reminder that The Blessed Mother calls both the most devout and the most distant to come, unite our hearts with her Immaculate Heart and to be enveloped in her motherly love.

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The gesture is also a call to action. It further reminds us that Our Lady desires each of us to be examples of love to the whole world. Finally, Our Lady Healer of Hearts, reminds us that regardless of what may divide us, God’s love, Her Son’s love, and indeed, Her love unites us.

The statue of Our Lady Healer of Hearts was sculpted by internationally acclaimed master sculptor, Gregor Mussner, and the world- renowned artists of Mussner G. Vincenzo Art Studio. Located in Ortisei, in the Dolomite Mountains of northeastern Italy known as “the valley of woodcarvers,” Mussner’s art studio, was founded in 1892. The 126-year-old studio has received numerous awards and acknowledgements of excellence. In 1998, His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, commissioned Mussner to create a statue entitled, “Mary of Nazareth.”

 

Our Lady, Healer of Hearts stands 33” tall from head to toe - an inch for each year of Her Beloved Son’s life on earth. She stands atop clouds, giving the statue a total height of approximately 43”. Unlike typical depictions of the Blessed Mother, Our Lady Healer of Hearts has her arms outstretched, with hands cupped, holding a golden heart.

 

The gesture is rich in symbolism.

 

It serves as a reminder that The Blessed Mother calls both the most devout and the most distant to come, unite our hearts with her Immaculate Heart and to be enveloped in her motherly love.

The gesture is also a call to action. It further reminds us that Our Lady desires each of us to be examples of love to the whole world. Finally, Our Lady Healer of Hearts, reminds us that regardless of what may divide us, God’s love, Her Son’s love, and indeed, Her love unites us.

 

Mussner, perhaps sums it up best: “A statue depicting Our Lady reaching her heart to the observer in front of her is uncommon in her gesture, but not in what she stands for. Her gesture suggests she is saying, ‘Come to me. Both I, and my beloved Son, will give you all of ourselves.’ It could also suggest that she is saying, ‘My heart beats for you, trust me. I gave you my heart, now change your life and come to me.’ Our Lady, Healer of Hearts, is a title which can effectively be used to explain Our Lady’s grace.”

 

The process to create the statue took 5 months. Mussner and his team began by creating a clay model, which served as the guide from which the statue would be carved. Next, wood imported from Croatia was fixed on a special carving table. Using different tools, Mussner began to create the statue, craved entirely by hand. As the work progressed and the statue started to take shape, the chisels used became more intricate. Once the carving was complete, a team of specialized painters used various techniques to add color to the piece until the desired result was achieved. 22 carat gold leaf was used for gilded parts of the statue.

The original statue of Our Lady Healer of Hearts resides at Catholic Familyland, headquarters of the Apostolate for Family Consecration, where it is on loan by the devotion’s founder in order that the faithful may offer prayers and appropriate reverence.

 

Established in 1975 by the late Jerry and the Servant of God Gwen Coniker, the Apostolate for Family Consecration’s primary focus is to sanctify and consecrate families in the truths of the Catholic Faith. Catholic Familyland, located near Steubenville, Ohio, is a multifaceted retreat center engaging families in a broad array of fun faith-building and recreational activities.

It’s no coincidence that the philosophy behind the devotion to Our Lady Healer of Hearts was, in essence, the very philosophy that led the late Jerome Coniker and his wife, the Servant of God Gwen Coniker to establish the Apostolate for Family Consecration. In many ways, the devotion to Our Lady Healer of Hearts is, in fact, the logical  “preface” to individual and family consecration to Jesus through Mary.

The philosophy of the devotion to Our Lady Healer of Hearts:

 

  • that all hearts are somehow wounded

  • that through Our Lady’s intercession all hearts can be healed

  • That once we experience a healing of heart, in gratitude, we must consecrate our heart to Jesus through Mary

  • that when we consecrate ourselves, we will more intimately experience the divine mercy, subsequently, our hearts are then more precious than gold

"Go before the altar of Our Lady, and, on your knees, trustingly ask her to take your heart, and prepare it to receive her dear Son ... Ask that He may keep your heart for Himself alone."

 

The words of Father Cruz to Blessed Lucia of Fatima on the occasion

of her First Confession, on the eve of her First Holy Communion.

The Painting