Category Archives: Feasts

Feast Of The Visitation Of The Blessed Virgin Mary – May 31.

Ordinary Time: May 31st


Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


[The Visitation]
COLLECT PRAYER




Almighty ever-living God, who, while the Blessed Virgin Mary was carrying your Son in her womb, inspired her to visit Elizabeth, grant us, we pray, that, faithful to the promptings of the Spirit, we may magnify your greatness with the Virgin Mary at all times. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

The feast of the Visitation recalls to us the following great truths and events: The visit of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her cousin Elizabeth shortly after the Annunciation; the cleansing of John the Baptist from original sin in the womb of his mother at the words of Our Lady’s greeting; Elizabeth’s proclaiming of Mary—under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost—as Mother of God and “blessed among women”; Mary’s singing of the sublime hymn, Magnificat (“My soul doth magnify the Lord”) which has become a part of the daily official prayer of the Church. The Visitation is frequently depicted in art, and was the central mystery of St. Francis de Sales’ devotions.

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The Mass of today salutes her who in her womb bore the King of heaven and earth, the Creator of the world, the Son of the Eternal Father, the Sun of Justice. It narrates the cleansing of John from original sin in his mother’s womb. Hearing herself addressed by the most lofty title of “Mother of the Lord” and realizing what grace her visit had conferred on John, Mary broke out in that sublime canticle of praise proclaiming prophetically that henceforth she would be venerated down through the centuries:

    “My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior. Because he that is mighty, hath done great things to me, and holy is His name” (Lk. 1:46).
—Excerpted from the Cathedral Daily Missal.




This feast is of medieval origin, it was kept by the Franciscan Order before 1263, and soon its observance spread throughout the entire Church. 
Previously it was celebrated on July 2. Now it is celebrated between the solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord and the birth of St. John the Baptist, in conformity with the Gospel accounts. Some places appropriately observe a celebration of the reality and sanctity of human life in the womb. The liturgical color is white.


The Visitation.

And Mary rising up in those days went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judah. [Lk. 1:39]

How lyrical that is, the opening sentence of St. Luke’s description of the Visitation. We can feel the rush of warmth and kindness, the sudden urgency of love that sent that girl hurrying over the hills. “Those days” in which she rose on that impulse were the days in which Christ was being formed in her, the impulse was his impulse.

Many women, if they were expecting a child, would refuse to hurry over the hills on a visit of pure kindness. They would say they had a duty to themselves and to their unborn child which came before anything or anyone else.

The Mother of God considered no such thing. Elizabeth was going to have a child, too, and although Mary’s own child was God, she could not forget Elizabeth’s need—almost incredible to us, but characteristic of her.

She greeted her cousin Elizabeth, and at the sound of her voice, John quickened in his mother’s womb and leapt for joy.

I am come, said Christ, that they may have life and may have it more abundantly. [Jn. 10, 10] Even before He was born His presence gave life.

With what piercing shouts of joy does this story of Christ unfold! First the conception of a child in a child’s heart, and then this first salutation, an infant leaping for joy in his mother’s womb, knowing the hidden Christ and leaping into life.

How did Elizabeth herself know what had happened to Our Lady? What made her realize that this little cousin who was so familiar to her was the mother of her God?

She knew it by the child within herself, by the quickening into life which was a leap of joy.

If we practice this contemplation taught and shown to us by Our Lady, we will find that our experience is like hers.

If Christ is growing in us, if we are at peace, recollected, because we know that however insignificant our life seems to be, from it He is forming Himself; if we go with eager wills, “in haste,” to wherever our circumstances compel us, because we believe that He desires to be in that place, we shall find that we are driven more and more to act on the impulse of His love.

And the answer we shall get from others to those impulses will be an awakening into life, or the leap into joy of the already wakened life within them.

-Excerpted
from The Reed of God, Caryll Houselander

Patronage: St. Elizabeth: Expectant mothers.

Symbols:
St. Elizabeth or Elisabeth: Pregnant woman saluting the Virgin; Elderly woman holding St. John Baptist; huge rock with a doorway in it; in company with St. Zachary.


Things to Do:



    Read Luke 1:39-47, the story of the Visitation. Read and meditate on the words of the Magnificat and the Hail Mary, two prayers from this feast. For those with children, depending on the ages, assign memorization for these prayers. Also discuss the meaning of the text as a family.

    This feast reminds us to be charitable to our neighbors. Try to assist some mother (expectant or otherwise), visit the elderly or sick, make a dinner for someone, etc. 

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Solemnity Of The Annunciation Of The Lord – March 25.

Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord.
COLLECT PRAYER
O God, who willed that your Word should take on the reality of human flesh in the womb of the Virgin Mary, grant, we pray, that we, who confess our Redeemer to be God and man, may merit to become partakers even in his divine nature. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Again Lent’s austerity is interrupted as we solemnly keep a feast in honor of the Annunciation. The Annunciation is a mystery that belongs to the temporal rather than to the sanctoral cycle in the Church’s calendar. For the feast commemorates the most sublime moment in the history of time, the moment when the Second Divine Person of the most Holy Trinity assumed human nature in the womb of the Virgin Mary. Thus it is a feast of our Lord, even as it is of Mary, although the liturgy centers wholly around the Mother of God. 

— The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch.
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Feast Of Our Lady Of Lourdes – February 11.


COLLECT PRAYER


Grant us, O merciful God, protection in our weakness, that we, who keep the Memorial of the Immaculate Mother of God, may with the help of her intercession, rise up from our iniquities. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.



Today marks the first apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary in 1858 to fourteen-year-old Marie Bernade (St. Bernadette) Soubirous. Between February 11 and July 16, 1858, the Blessed Virgin appeared eighteen times, and showed herself to St. Bernadette in the hollow of the rock at Lourdes. On March 25 she said to the little shepherdess who was only fourteen years of age: “I am the Immaculate Conception.” Since then Lourdes has become a place of pilgrimage and many cures and conversions have taken place. The message of Lourdes is a call to personal conversion, prayer, and charity.


Our Lady of Lourdes

The many miracles which have been performed through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin at Lourdes prompted the Church to institute a special commemorative feast, the “Apparition of the Immaculate Virgin Mary.” The Office gives the historical background. Four years after the promulgation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception (1854), the Blessed Virgin appeared a number of times to a very poor and holy girl named Bernadette. The actual spot was in a grotto on the bank of the Gave River near Lourdes.

The Immaculate Conception had a youthful appearance and was clothed in a pure white gown and mantle, with an azure blue girdle. A golden rose adorned each of her bare feet. On her first apparition, February 11, 1858, the Blessed Virgin bade the girl make the sign of the Cross piously and say the rosary with her. Bernadette saw her take the rosary that was hanging from her arms into her hands. This was repeated in subsequent apparitions.   

With childlike simplicity Bernadette once sprinkled holy water on the vision, fearing that it was a deception of the evil spirit; but the Blessed Virgin smiled pleasantly, and her face became even more lovely. The third time Mary appeared she invited the girl to come to the grotto daily for two weeks. Now she frequently spoke to Bernadette. On one occasion she ordered her to tell the ecclesiastical authorities to build a church on the spot and to organize processions. Bernadette also was told to drink and wash at the spring still hidden under the sand.

Finally on the feast of the Annunciation, the beautiful Lady announced her name, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”

The report of cures occurring at the grotto spread quickly and the more it spread, the greater the number of Christians who visited the hallowed place. The publicity given these miraculous events on the one hand and the seeming sincerity and innocence of the girl on the other made it necessary for the bishop of Tarbes to institute a judicial inquiry. Four years later he declared the apparitions to be supernatural and permitted the public veneration of the Immaculate Conception in the grotto. Soon a chapel was erected, and since that time countless pilgrims come every year to Lourdes to fulfill promises or to beg graces.

— Excerpted from The Church’s Year of Grace, Pius Parsch.

Octave Of Christmas And Solemnity Of Mary, Mother Of God – January 1

Christmas: January 1st

Octave of Christmas and Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God (Holy Day of Obligation)

[Our Lady of Providence]
COLLECT PRAYER
O God, who through the fruitful virginity of Blessed Mary bestowed on the human race the grace of eternal salvation, grant, we pray, that we may experience the intercession of her, through whom we were found worthy to receive the author of life, our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Today the Church celebrates the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, our Lady’s greatest title. This feast is the octave of Christmas. In the modern Roman Calendar only Christmas and Easter enjoy the privilege of an octave. According to the 1962 Missal of St. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the Solemnity of Circumcision of Our Lord.
“Mary, the all-holy ever-virgin Mother of God, is the masterwork of the mission of the Son and the Spirit in the fullness of time. For the first time in the plan of salvation and because his Spirit had prepared her, the Father found the dwelling place where his Son and his Spirit could dwell among men. In this sense the Church’s Tradition has often read the most beautiful texts on wisdom in relation to Mary. Mary is acclaimed and represented in the liturgy as the “Seat of Wisdom.” 

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Feast Of Our Lady Of Guadalupe – Dec. 12


​COLLECT PRAYER



O God, Father of mercies, who placed your people under the singular protection of your Son’s most holy Mother, grant that all who invoke the Blessed Virgin of Guadalupe, may seek with ever more lively faith the progress of peoples in the ways of justice and of peace. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


Our Lady of Guadalupe

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Hour of Grace On Dec 8th 12 Noon: Our Lady Wants Everyone To Know About This

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The Blessed virgin promised that whatever a person asked her for during this Hour of Grace (even in impossible cases) would be granted to them, if it was in accordance with the Will of the Eternal Father
 
My wish is that every year on the 8th December, at noon, an “Hour of Grace” will be installed.  Many spiritual graces and physical blessings will be received by those who pray, undisturbed, during this hour.”

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Nuestra Senora Del Pilar (Our Lady Of The Pillar) 

Feast Day: October 12th

The First Marian Apparition in Church History: Our Lady of the Pillar

October 12th, in addition to being Columbus Day, is also the feast day of Our Lady of the Pillar, patroness of all Hispanic peoples. While not one of the most widely known titles of Our Lady, it is the oldest, and has a most fascinating story that you will be delighted to read.

Tradition has it that the Blessed Virgin Mary, sometime before  her bodily Assumption into heaven, appeared to the Apostle St. James the Elder while he was living and preaching in Spain.


The Story of Our Lady of the Pillar

After Pentecost, the 12 Apostles dispersed to preach the Gospel all over the world. St. James the Greater, on one of his apostolic journeys, preached in the Iberian Peninsula in modern-day Spain.
St. James was discouraged that the pagans of that land were not responding to the Gospel and converting to Christianity. He had only a handful of converts to show for his labors. In the face of what he thought was failure in his mission, he prayed with his disciples by the Ebro river in modern day Zaragoza.

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The Saints Quotes On Our Lady Of Sorrows.

​The 6th Sorrow of Our Lady:  


The Piercing of the Side of Jesus and Descent from the Cross.

1. What grief would she feel to see that men after the death of her Son, continue to torment and crucify him by their sins.


2. The holy Fathers explain this to be the very sword predicted to the Virgin by St. Simeon; a sword, not of iron, but of grief.


3. Let us consider what anguish it would cause any mother to receive the lifeless body of a son!


4. The afflicted mother [raised] herself and extending her arms to meet her dear Son; she embraces him, and then sits down at the foot of the cross.


5. St. Bernard says: The spear which opened his side passed through the soul of the Virgin, which could not be torn from the heart of Jesus.


6. There came out blood and water, for only a few drops of blood remained, …. in order to show that he had no more blood to give us.

The Saints Quotes On Our Lady Of Sorrows

As Compiled By St. Alphonsus Liguori – (The Glories Of Mary)  
​The 5th Sorrow of Our Lady:  




Jesus Dies on the Cross.



1. As St. Bernard says, love inflicted on the heart of Mary the same suffering that the nails caused in the body of Jesus.


2. Under the cross this mother in agony, who was suffering all the pain that her Son was suffering.


3. If the lips of Mary were silent, her heart was not so; for she did not cease offering  to divine justice the life of her Son for our salvation.


4. Thus the afflicted mother saw her Jesus suffering on every side, she desired to comfort him, but could not.


5. A Mother condemned to see an innocent Son, whom she loved with all the affection of her heart, put to death before her eyes.


6. Near the cross stood his mother, speechless; living she died; dying she lived.


7. But what increased most the sorrows which Mary suffered through compassion for her Son, was to hear him complain on the cross that even the eternal Father had abandoned him.

The Saints Quotes On Our Lady Of Sorrows 

As Compiled By St. Alphonsus Liguori – (The Glories Of Mary) 


The 4th Sorrow of Our Lady:  

Our Lady Meets Jesus on the Way to Cavalry.


1. The greater the tenderness with which she loved him, the greater was her grief at the sight of his sufferings.

2. This most afflicted mother met her most afflicted Son said StBernard.

3. Let us then pity her, and endeavor also ourselves to accompany her Son and herself, bearing with patience the cross which the Lord imposes upon us.

4. While Mary stopped in that place how much she must have heard said against her Son by the Jews  who knew her, and perhaps also words of mockery of herself!

5. All mothers feel the sufferings of their children as their own….  But what mother ever loved a child so much as Mary Loved Jesus?

6. At length they look at each other…a look of sorrow, which pierced, as with so many arrows, those two holy and loving souls.

7. But although the sight of her dying Jesus must cost her such cruel anguish, the loving Mary will not leave him.

The Saints Quotes On Our Lady Of Sorrows

​As Complied By St. Alphonsus Liguori

(The Glories Of Mary)


The 3rd Sorrow of Our Lady:  


The Loss of the Child Jesus in the Temple.


1. Origen says, that through the love which this holy mother bore her Son, she suffered more at this loss of Jesus than any martyr ever suffered at death.


2. Let us imagine what distress that afflicted mother must have experienced in those three days in which she was searching for her Son.


3. Ah, how long were these three days for Mary! They appeared three ages!


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The Saints Quotes On Our Lady Of Sorrows

Compiled By St. Alphonsus Liguori (The Glories Of Mary)

​The 2nd Sorrow of Our Lady: 


The Cold Flight into Egypt:


1. What great tribulation than that of a newborn child, clinging to its mother’s bosom, should be forced to fly with the mother herself.

2. How piteous a spectacle it was to see that tender Virgin, with that newly born infant in her arms wandering through the world.

3. Authors generally agree, that it was four hundred miles so that it was a journey of thirty days.

4. The season was winter, and therefore they had to travel in snow, rain, wind and storms, and through bad and difficult roads.

5. Where could they have slept except on the sand, or under some trees in the wood, in the open air, exposed to robbers, or those wild beasts with which Egypt abounded.

6. The sight, then, of Jesus and Mary wandering like fugitives through this world, teaches us that we should also live as pilgrims on the earth.

7. Let us then love them, let us console Mary by receiving her son within our hearts, whom, even now, men continue to persecute with their sins.

…to be continued

The Saints Quotes on Our Lady of Sorrows

The following quotes on Our Lady of Sorrows are taken from The Glories of Mary by St Alphonsus Ligouri. The Saint quotes are organized according to the seven sorrows so that one can recite the seven sorrows chaplet in the same manner as a scriptural rosary. If you are familiar with St. Alphonsus writing style, you know that he likes to produce all the quotes he can to make a point and so he compiled many quotes from Saints, theologians and other holy men and women, so some of these quotes on the Sorrows of Our Lady are not the words of St. Alphonsus but that of the other Saints that he cited, where this has occurred we hope that we have included the citation for the correct Saint that he cited.
The 1st Sorrow of Our Lady:  
The Prophecy of Simeon.


1. How much more miserable would life be, if everyone knew also the future evils which were to afflict him!

2. The Lord exercises his compassion towards us, that he does make known to us the crosses that await us.

3. But he did not exercise this compassion with Mary, who, God wished to be the queen of dolors, and in all things like his son, and to see always before her eyes,and to suffer continually the passion and death of her beloved Jesus.

4. Mary received with the greatest calmness the announcement that her Son should die, and peacefully continued to submit to it.

5. But what grief she must have continually suffered.

6. And the nearer the time the passion of her Son approached, with so much greater pain did that sword of sorrow, predicted by St. Simeon, pierce the heart of the mother.

7. If, then, Jesus our King and his most holy mother did not refuse, for love of us, to suffer during their whole life such cruel pains, there is no reason that we should complain to suffer a little.

…to be continued

Feast Of Our Lady Of Sorrows – Sept. 15



COLLECT 


Father, as your Son was raised on the cross, His Mother Mary stood by Him, sharing His sufferings. May your Church be united with Christ in His suffering and death and so come to share in His rising to new life. Looking to the example of Mary, may wetoo unite our sufferings to our Lord, facing them with courage, love, and trust.

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The Most Holy Name Of Mary Said Devotedly Is A Prayer

“Blessed is the man who loves thy name, O Mary,” exclaims St. Bonaventure. “Yes, truly blessed is he who loves thy sweet name, O Mother of God! for,” he continues,”thy name is so glorious and admirable, that no one who remembers it has any fears at the hour of death.” Such is its power, that none of those who invoke it at the hour of death fear the assaults of their enemies. 


St. Camillus de Lellis urged the members of his community to remind the dying often to utter the holy names of Jesus and Mary. Such was his custom when assisting people in their last hour. Oh, that we may end our lives as did the Capuchin Father, Fulgentius of Ascoli, who expired singing, “O Mary, O Mary, the most beautiful of creatures! let us depart together.”
Let us conclude with the tender prayer of St. Bonaventure: “I ask thee, O Mary, for the glory of thy name, to come and meet my soul when it is departing from this world, and to take it in thine arms.” (End)

Excerpts From The Breviary For The Feast Of The Most Holy Name Of Mary – Sept. 12

It is said: And the Virgin’s name was Mary. Let us speak a few words upon this name, which signifieth, being interpreted, Star of the Sea, and suiteth very well the Maiden Mother, who may very meetly be likened unto a star. A star giveth forth her rays without any harm to herself, and the Virgin brought forth her Son without any hurt to her virginity. The light of a star taketh nothing away from the Virginity of Mary. She is that noble star which was to come out of Jacob, whose brightness still sheddeth lustre upon all the earth, whose rays are most brilliant in heaven, and shine even unto hell, lighting up earth midway, and warming souls rather than bodies, fostering good and scaring away evil. She, I say, is a clear and shining star, twinkling with excellencies, and resplendent with example, needfully set to look down upon the surface of this great and wide sea.

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Feast Of The Most HOLY Name Of MARY – Sept. 12

The Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary began in Spain in 1513 and in 1671 was extended to all of Spain and the Kingdom of Naples. This feast day  was established by Pope Innocent XI upon the victory of Christian forces against the Moslems beseiging Vienna in 1683. 

The honored name of the Virgin Mary, which is said to mean “Star of the Sea,” is most fitting for the Virgin Mother. She may well be compared to a star; for, as a star beams forth its rays without any diminution of its own luster, so too the Virgin gave birth to a Son with no loss to her virginity. 

We venerate the name of Mary because it belongs to her who is the Mother of God, the holiest of creatures, the Queen of Heaven and Earth, the Mother of Mercy. 

The feast, after falling out of use after 1969, was restored to the Roman Calendar by Pope John Paul II when the third typical edition of the Missal was published in 2000.

Nativity Of The Blessed Virgin Mary – Sept. 8



COLLECT PRAYER
Impart to your servants, we pray, O Lord, the gift of heavenly grace, that the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin may bring deeper peace to those for whom the birth of her Son was the dawning of salvation. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
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Feast Of The QueenShip Of Mary – August 22


FACTS

Venerated in: Catholic Church, Anglican Communion, Eastern Orthodoxy.

Feast Day: 22 August

Attributes: Blessed Virgin Mary, crown of stars, flowers

Patronage: Heaven, eternal salvation to humankind, redemption.

Queen of Heaven is a title given to the Virgin Mary by Christians mainly of the Roman Catholic Church, and also, to some extent, in Eastern Orthodoxy and Anglicanism. The title is a consequence of the First Council of Ephesus in the fifth century, in which the Virgin Mary was proclaimed “theotokos”, a title rendered in Latin as Mater Dei, in English “Mother of God”. The Catholic teaching on this subject is expressed in the papal encyclical Ad Caeli Reginam, issued by Pope Pius XII on the 11th of October 1954, the Pope established the Feast of the Queenship of Mary to be celebrated throughout the world, and commanded that on that day each year, the world should renew its consecration to her. In the future the Feast came to be celebrated on 22nd of August.

“The purpose of the Feast is that all may recognize more clearly and venerate more devoutly the merciful and motherly sovereignty of her who bore God in her womb”  (Ven. Pius XII, Ad. Coeli Reginam).

On the day of her Assumption, Mary our Mother was solemnly crowned by Christ and received by the whole court of Heaven as Queen.What Christ has done in Heaven andthe Church has done on our behalf we should now do individually, that is, we should recognize Mary’s Queenship, enthrone her in our homes, consecrate ourselves to her and, by this means, establish in our lives the reign of Mary Immaculate Queen of the Universe.
ln explaining further, It states that Mary is called Queen of Heaven, because her Son Jesus Christ  is the king of Israel and heavenly king of the universe; indeed, the Davidic tradition of Israel recognized the mother of the king as the Queen Mother of Israel.

~O MARY QUEEN Of HEAVEN, Pray For Us!


Solemnity Of The Assumption Of The Blessed Virgin Mary.


Information

Holy Day Of Obligation

Feast Day: August 15
The Assumption is the oldest feast day of Our Lady, but we don’t know how it first came to be celebrated. Its origin is lost in those days when Jerusalem was restored as a sacred city, at the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine (c. 285-337). By then it had been a pagan city for two centuries, ever since Emperor Hadrian (76-138) had leveled it around the year 135 and rebuilt it as <Aelia Capitolina> in honor of Jupiter. For 200 years, every memory of Jesus was obliterated from the city, and the sites made holy by His life, death and Resurrection became pagan temples. After the building of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in 336, the sacred sites began to be restored and memories of the life of Our Lord began to be celebrated by the people of Jerusalem. One of the memories about his mother centered around the “Tomb of Mary,” close to Mount Zion, where the early Christian community had lived. On the hill itself was the “Place of Dormition,” the spot of Mary’s “falling asleep,” where she had died. The “Tomb of Mary” was where she was buried. At this time, the “Memory of Mary” was being celebrated. Later it was to become our Feast of the Assumption. For a time, the “Memory of Mary” was marked only in Palestine, but then it was extended by the emperor to all the churches of the East. In the seventh century, it began to be celebrated in Rome under the title of the “Falling Asleep (“Dormitio”) of the Mother of God. Soon the name was changed to the “Assumption of Mary,” since there was more to the feast than her dying. It also proclaimed that she had been taken up, body and soul, into heaven. That belief was ancient, dating back to the apostles themselves. What was clear from the beginning was that there were no relics of Mary to be venerated, and that an empty tomb stood on the edge of Jerusalem near the site of her death. That location also soon became a place of pilgrimage. (Today, the Benedictine Abbey of the Dormition of Mary stands on the spot.) At the Council of Chalcedon in 451, when bishops from throughout the Mediterranean world gathered in Constantinople, Emperor Marcian asked the Patriarch of

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Dedication Of St. Mary Major

St. Mary Major is important to Christendom for three reasons:



(a)  It stands as a venerable monument to the Council of Ephesus (431), at which the dogma of Mary’s divine Motherhood was solemnly defined; the definition of the Council occasioned a most notable increase in the veneration paid to Mary.
(b)  The basilica is Rome’s “church of the crib,” a kind of Bethlehem within the Eternal City; it also is a celebrated station church, serving, for instance, as the center for Rome’s liturgy for the first Mass on Christmas. In some measure every picture of Mary with the divine Child is traceable to this church.
(c)  St. Mary Major is Christendom’s first Marian shrine for pilgrims. It set the precedent for the countless shrines where pilgrims gather to honor our Blessed Mother throughout the world. Here was introduced an authentic expression of popular piety that has been the source of untold blessings and graces for Christianity in the past as in the present. 

The beginnings of St. Mary Major date to the Constantinian period. Originally it was called the Sicinini Basilica; it was the palace of a patrician family by that name before its transformation into a church by Pope Liberius. The story of its origin is legendary, dating from the Middle Ages. The Breviary gives this version: “Liberius was on the chair of Peter (352-366) when the Roman patrician John and his wife, who was of like nobility, vowed to bequeath their estate to the most holy Virgin and Mother of God, for they had no children to whom their property could go.
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Feast Of The Dedication Of St. Mary Major Basilica, Rome.

Feast Day – August 5

COLLECT PRAYER
Pardon the faults of your servants, we pray, O Lord, that we, who cannot please you by our own deeds, may be saved through the intercession of the Mother of your Son and our Lord. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We celebrate today the dedication of one of the four most illustrious churches of Rome. While each diocese and parish keeps its own dedication anniversary, the Church universal commemorates the consecration of the four great Roman basilicas, the mother churches, we may call them, of Christendom, viz., St. John Lateran, St. Peter, St. Paul Outside the Walls, and St. Mary Major. By means of these feasts the Church seeks to link all Christians with the Holy See.
This feast commemorates the miracle of the snowfall that occurred during the night of August 4-5 in the year 358 on the site where the basilica now stands. According to tradition, the Virgin Mary appeared in a dream to two faithful Roman Christians, the patrician John and his wife, as well as to Pope Liberius (352-366), asking that a church be built in her honor on the site where snow would fall on the night of August 4-5. Pope Liberius traced the outlines of the church in the snow and the first basilica was built on that site. It was completed about a century later by Pope Sixtus III (432-440), after the Council of Ephesus in 431 during which Mary was declared to be the Mother of God.

In Rome the Basilica of St. Mary Major will hold its traditional triduum from August 1 to 3 and two days of celebration on August 4 and 5. During the pontifical Mass and the second vespers, the traditional shower of flower petals will descend from the ceiling of the basilica to commemorate the August snowfall in 358.

Feasts of The Blessed Virgin Mary

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The main events of the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary are celebrated as liturgical feasts of the universal Church.

January 1
Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God

February 2
Presentation of the Lord

February 11
Our Lady of Lourdes

March 25
Annunciation

May 13
Our Lady of Fatima

May 31
Visitation

June 27
Our Mother of Perpetual Help

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Novena To The Solemnity Of The Assumption Of The Blessed Virgin Mary

Daily Novena Prayer: Mary, Queen Assumed into Heaven, I rejoice that after years of heroic martyrdom on earth, you have at last been taken to the throne prepared for you in heaven by the Holy Trinity.

Lift my heart with you in the glory of your Assumption above the dreadful touch of sin and impurity. Teach me how small earth becomes when viewed from heaven. Make me realize that death is the triumphant gate through which I shall pass to your Son, and that someday my body shall rejoin my soul in the unending bliss of heaven.

From this earth, over which I tread as a pilgrim, I look to you for help. I ask for this favor: (Mention your request).

When my hour of death has come, lead me safely to the presence of Jesus to enjoy the vision of my God for all eternity together with you.

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Novena Day One:
Immaculate Virgin, Mother of Jesus and our Mother, we believe in your triumphant assumption into heaven where the angels and saints acclaim you as Queen of Heaven and earth. We join them in praising you and bless the Lord who raised you above all creatures. With them we offer you our devotion and love. We are confident that you watch over our daily efforts and we pray that you may intercede for us in our needs (mention your request). We take comfort from the faith in the coming Resurrection and we look to you, our life, our sweetness and our hope. After this earthly life, show us Jesus, the blest fruit of your womb, O kind, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
O Queen Assumed into Heaven, pray for us.
Amen.
Say the Daily Novena Prayer

Novena Day Two: Continue reading