Feast of Our Lady Help of Christians
Pope Pius VII, held captive by Napoleon’s forces at Savona, organized a Rosary Novena among the faithful to Our Lady Help of Christians for his liberation. In 1815, Pius VII established the feast of Our Lady Help of Christians in gratitude for his release from captivity.
In 1809, Napoleon's men entered the Vatican, arrested Pius VII and brought him in chains to Grenoble, and eventually Fontainbleau. His imprisonment lasted five years. The Holy Father vowed to God that , if he were restored to the Roman See, he would institute a special feast in honor of Mary. Military reverses forced Napoleon to release the Pope, and on May 24th 1814, Pius VII returned in triumph to Rome. Twelve months later, the Pope decreed that the feast of Mary Help of Christians, be kept on the 24th of May. (Source: Excerpt from PiercedHearts)Saint John Bosco founded the Salesian order under the Patronage of Our Lady Help of Christians. He composed this Novena to her: