The Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help is surrounded by an array of city dwellings. It is quite an amazing sight to see the impressive stone church’s 214 feet twin steeples soar above the neighboring structures. Rising from the ashes of puritanical hatred for the Catholic Faith, from “No-Nothing” (an anti-Catholic political movement) persecution of Catholics in which an Ursuline Convent in Boston was burned in 1834, and from enactment of laws barring Catholic Priests from the Mass Bay Area, the Basilica stretches its magnificent towers to the Heavens in praise and thanksgiving to God.
The “jewel” of the church is the Shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. Mounted on a shiny, golden mosaic wall is an icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, who beckons her children to approach the rail and pray to her. On each side of the Icon stands a statue of a praying angel, looking up at Our Lady and on the gold ceiling above the icon are painted two more angels carrying an Ave Maria banner. Kneeling before the awe-inspiring Icon, one senses the palpable presence of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. There are many crutches left in vases at each side of the altar of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, which indicate the many miracles attributed to Her. During the thirteen years from the inception of the church until 1884, there were already 331 well-authenticated miraculous cures, which were propagated throughout America. In fact, The NY Herald, in March of 1901, called this Shrine the “Lourdes of America” because there were so many miraculous cures.