Statue of Saint Mary

Statue of Mary
Statue of Mary

This statue belonged to my grandmother. It shows Saint Mary, the biblical mother of Jesus. She is depicted to be standing atop a snake, as she so often is. For me, the statue is less of a religious comfort as it is a comforting symbol of my grandmother’s life, and how her experience is reflected by the statue of Mary and their similarities. It is often said that Mary is shown standing on a snake because her motherly strength allowed her throughout her life to overcome her hardships. My grandmother was, in all aspects of the word, a mother. When my grandfather passed away when my mother was still a young child, my grandmother was a loving, nurturing mother to my mother and her two sisters as they grew. She provided as much as a single mother could for them, and as her children aged, she acted as a mother to all of their friends, caring for them as if they were her own. She continued to be a maternal figure who bonded our family. Throughout the years, she had collected a fair share of miraculous medals and rosaries, finding solace in her devotions. As she neared the end of her life, she developed a progressive disease known as dementia and Alzheimer’s. I admired her ability to still care for me even as her memories faded and her bright, lively energy dulled with her sickness. Even in her final moments, she was as nurturing as any could ever be. This is why I associate her so heavily with the statue- her ability to love and provide for her children no matter what makes her one of the strongest mothers I could imagine, similar to Mary.

Place(s): Italy

– Jiana Casazza

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant