In Latin America, the devout often petition a saint for a favor or thank him for answering a prayer by hanging a small representation of the petition on his/her image. These little "miracles" are tiny effigies in silver, gold, or another material: houses, hearts, legs, hands, horses, and crops, or other items that illustrate a petitioner's prayer. In the Latin Catholic world, the milagro of a baby asks for a safe pregnancy and birth; the image of a soldier prays for his safe return; a heart may symbolize a love affair or cardiological problem. Basically, the petitioner decides what a milagro represents. The quantity of milagros hung on a saint figure testifies to the saint's effectiveness in answering prayers.
Milagros have long been a Pachamama specialty. We have old examples as well as a special line of some 250 new ones made in .925 silver and yellow bronze that can be purchased online or in our store. We also sell owner Martha Egan’s book, Milagros: Votive Offerings from the Americas, published in a Spanish-English edition by the Museum of New Mexico Press in 1991. The book explains the history of this tradition and is well-illustrated.
Today, many people use milagros to wish a friend well with a serious disease or a concern: a breast for a cancer sufferer, a horse miniature for a child hoping for a pony, a car milagro to wish a friend a safe journey or a trouble-free car; a foot milagro for a jogger with a broken toe; a house milagro to wish someone luck in obtaining a mortgage. They are the perfect little gift or good luck charm.