In early sixties, the Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Eucharist were given a statue of the Infant Jesus. We received him through our chaplain at the time, Fr. John Knoebber. Fr. John had two sisters who were Benedictines of Mount St. Scholastica in Atchison. They were working as missionaries in Mexico where a devotion to this statue was growing. He’s called the Holy Infant of Good Health, and he is known for working miracles of healing. The devotion to the Holy Infant of Good Health began when a woman in Morelia, Mexico prayed one night before this statue and in the morning found that it had grown in size. Then her sister got ill, and the woman prayed before the statue for healing for her sister. Again, overnight, the woman’s sister was healed. Eventually the family placed the statue in a front window, and their friends and neighbors began stopping by to pray for the intercession of the Infant. Soon it was well known in Morelia that if you needed healing, the Infant of Good Health could help you.
Eventually this devotion received ecclesiastical approval from the Archbishop of Morelia. Six replica statues were created. One was given to Pope St. John XXIII. One was placed in the same window of the family home because the original was moved to a church built in its honor. One ended up in the Diocese of Biloxi, in a town called Clermont Harbor. The Benedictines in Atchison also have one. And we received one, because of our Chaplain, Fr. John. We’ve cherished this little statue for a long time. It used to be the statue we carried in procession during our Christmas Novena. As we (and the Infant) have aged, we no longer feel comfortable processing with the Statue, but we still rely on his protection.
In January, we moved the Infant of Good Health Statue from the entry-way to the inside of Our Lady of the Angels Chapel. We had one sister facing a major procedure, another mid-way into a course of Chemo, and many others coping with the general aches and pains of aging. This turned out to be very providential. When the diocese announced that public gatherings of the faithful had to be cancelled, including public Masses, we placed a petition at the feet of the Holy Infant of Good Health asking him for protection from the Coronavirus and peace of mind. We are continuing to ask God through the intercession of the Holy Infant of Good Health for protection for everyone and for an end to the spread of the virus. We invite you to pray with us.
The Feast of the Infant of Good Health is one month away, on April 21. We will be praying a Novena to the Holy Infant leading up to the feast, and we will post the novena prayers here and on facebook so you can join with us, if you wish.
Prayer to the Holy Infant:
Little Infant Jesus of Good Health, God of love born to suffer for me! In You above all do I find the courage and strength I need in the trials and troubles that weigh so heavily upon me.
By the sorrows of Your Most Holy Mother, I implore You to lighten the burdens of my soul with Your holy consolations and to relieve my bodily infirmities with your Merciful Kindness, if it so pleases the will of our Father in Heaven. Amen
If you would like to learn more about the infant, you can check out the website for the shrine in Mississippi, which includes a tab with prayers to the Holy Infant, here: https://holyinfantofgoodhealthinmississippi.com/devotion/the-story/
(NOTE: the story about the statue's growth is something that has been "passed down" in our community. We cannot find any external confirmation for this detail...)