Honouring Our Lady of Aberdeen at the Cathedral

Currently on display in St. Columba’s Cathedral is a replica of the pre-Reformation statue of Our Lady of Aberdeen. It is doing a tour of the cathedrals of Scotland. Morning Rosary is recited at the statue each morning.

The original statue, standing high on a pedestal in a side chapel of a Brussels church, is one of Scotland’s treasures saved from destruction in Aberdeen during the Reformation. For sixty-five years, it was hidden until it was shipped to safety in the Low Countries. Despite her intention to keep the statue in the Royal Palace, the lnfanta of Spain, the Archduchess Isabella, was persuaded to place it in the newly built Augustinian church in Brussels. The statue remained in this church until 1796, when it was again removed for protection into private hands, this time to escape the ravages of the French Revolution. An Englishman, John Morris, safely restored it to the Augustinians in 1805 and it remained in their care as an object of devotion until 1814 when it was removed to the neighbouring Church of Our Lady of Finisterre. It is still venerated there as Our Lady of Good Success. Since the Restoration of the Scottish Hierarchy in 1878, devotion to Our Blessed Lady in Aberdeen, throughout the diocese, and further afield, has focused on copies of this ancient statue including the statue (left) which stands in the Chapel of Our Lady at Saint Mary’s Cathedral.

photo credit: Romano Capocci