When the situation is absolutely hopeless, when all the doctors agree that there is absolutely no chance of ever reganing full and proper health, not all is lost. You can pray. But not just to any saint or god or deity. You must pray to Mary, the mother of Jesus. Sometimes, the faithful know, she will grant a miracle. And when she does, you must thank her.
These little plaques are attached to an old wall in a corner of Largo Preneste, in Rome. There, next to two portraits of the Madonna, people affix their “ex voto”, also referred to as “p.g.r.”, or “per grazia ricevuta”. Roughly, for having been graced. Each and every one of these plaques is testimony to a miracle, large or small. But usually huge.
Most are little rectangles affixed with old rusty nails. Some are heart-shaped. Some are in Latin, some in Spanish, most in Italian. Some have small gifts – a keychain, a small toy. Some have a small photograph. Some a note tucked behind a corner. Many plaques have fallen. They remain, respected, neatly stacked and then touched no more, at the foot of the wall.
The flowers to the Madonna are very well tended to. A “nasone” (big nose, as Romans nickname their drinking fountains) is handily nearby. I find these public yet discreet displays of affection truly touching.
Also, i wanted a very static subject to test out my new camera. Used, actually, but in very good shape. And it’s new to me!
Hope you enjoyed.