One day while I was in the waiting room of a doctor’s office, I picked up a magazine and read an interesting piece about how a certain beetle came to be known as a ladybug. According to this account, European farmers in ages past were wrestling with crop failure when they took their problem to the Lord. Asking the Blessed Mother to intercede for their needs, they prayed a novena (nine days of prayer) for a reversal in what was certain to be complete financial loss for that growing season. Amazingly, at the end of the novena, they noticed some strange little beetles they’d never seen before. Red with black spots, the bugs converged in large numbers and even more amazing, the crops started to prosper once again. What the farmers didn’t know was the fact that aphids had been eating their crops, and ladybugs, their natural enemies, were now eating them. Having no name for their little plant soldiers, they called them “Our Lady’s Bugs” in honor of the Blessed Virgin whose intercession they had sought and received with overwhelming success. Eventually, the name was shortened from Our Lady’s Bugs to Ladybugs, and this little image is offered in honor of the farmer’s friend, this tiny champ which still saves the day in the fields where our food grows.