Tag Archives: Blessed Virgin Mary

Nichols re-consecrated England and Wales to the Mother of God

Nichols crowns the Blessed Virgin Mary

His Eminence, Vincent Cardinal Nichols re-consecrated England and Wales to the Immaculate Heart of Mary at Westminster Cathedral. Today’s Marian consecration renews the original offering made by Cardinal Bernard Griffin on July 16, 1948.

The prayer, in part, read,

“We consecrate ourselves forever to you and to your Immaculate Heart, Our Mother and Queen: that your love and patronage may hasten the triumph of the Kingdom of God and that all nations, at peace with one another and with God, may proclaim you blessed and with you may raise their voices to sing the everlasting Magnificat of glory, love and gratitude to the Heart of Jesus, where alone they can find truth and peace.”

Sadly, across the country there was a Freemasons ceremony held in Canterbury Cathedral to commemorate the 300th anniversary of Freemasonry in the UK with the establishment of the first Grand Lodge in London. Permission was given by Archbishop Justin Welby. The ceremony was granted following the Freemasons gave Welby a $300k gift. The Dean of Canterbury Cathedral, the Very Rev. Robert Willis, presided at the Masonic service. Prince Edward, the Duke of Kent who is the Grand Master of the Freemasons was in attendance.

The truth of the matter is that freemasonry is irreconcilable with Catholicism, that is, Christians in general. The Church has consistently stated that a Catholic cannot belong to Masonry because membership in the organization because contradicts sacred Scripture and it worships man, not the Triune God. No counterfeit Christians are allowed. If the teaching Scripture and theology is true for Catholics it is true for all Christians. As one person said, “Our poor Church reeks of the stench of Satan brought into us by these evil lovers of Satan.” What Welby allowed is clearly wrong.

Why mention this heinous act in the context of such a beautiful gesture of oblation? The Canterbury Cathedral was the Mother-Church of All England from 597 until the death of Cardinal Reginald Pole, in 1558, the last Catholic Archbishop. Canterbury was known as the heart of the Catholic Church in England, a true shrine of Christianity because it housed the shrine of St Thomas Becket (+1170) and other saints, and the home of the now dissolved Abbey of St Augustine.

In a homily Nichols said:

“Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is a way for us to say ‘yes’ too, ‘yes’ to an attitude of heart that accords with Our Lady’s, and so opens up pathways, fresh and sure, towards Christ. This is why today we consecrate ourselves, our entire lives, our country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, so we can always be saying ‘Yes’ to the Lord, with all our heart with all our will, from the centre of our being. Only Mary can teach us how to do this. 

To cultivate such an attitude of heart is, to put it mildly, the work of a lifetime. We need practical support along the way. And that is where another aspect of the message of Fatima can be so helpful. The recitation of the Rosary… I learned to pray the Rosary as a child at home. As a family we prayed the Rosary together. I can still see the pattern of the chairs at which we were kneeling. Concentrating on the prayer was not always easy but we were trying. That’s what counts. How much I wished that every family finds time to pray together. What a difference that would make! And this prayer is needed… ‘The heart open to God… is stronger than guns and weapons of every kind.’ So wrote the future Pope Benedict. They are words that we do well to make our own as, this year, a second century of the story of Fatima begins.

Our Lady, Queen of Peace, pray for us; Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.” Amen!

Mary, the Mother of God

madonna-with-child-granduccaIt is so fitting that today on the octave of Christmas, we honor in a special way the memory of God’s holy Mother, the Theotokos. The immense mystery of the Incarnation would have been impossible without her. Jesus’ father is God himself, but he needed a human mother to become man to be born among us.

Mary, the humble maiden from Nazareth, was assigned that role; she accepted it willing, in complete submission and cooperation with God’s plan. Therefore, from that moment on, all generations call her blessed.

She is our mother, our friend, our helper, our living example of true Gospel living, our refuge in time of danger, a solace in time of affliction. She is also a luminous guide when we find ourselves submerged under the shadows of darkness and despair. On our pilgrimage toward God’s kingdom, her maternal presence dispels our doubts, our loneliness. She provides the strength and encouragement needed for the remainder of the journey.

Br. Victor-Antoine D’Avila-Latourrette
A Monastery Journey To Christmas

Our Lady of the Rosary

our-lady-of-the-rosary

“The Rosary, though clearly Marian in character, is at heart a Christocentric prayer. In the sobriety of its elements, it has all the depth of the Gospel message in its entirety , of which it can be said to be a compendium. It is an echo of the prayer of Mary, her perennial Magnificat for the work of the redemptive Incarnation which began in her virginal womb. With the Rosary, the Christian people sits at the school of Mary and is led to contemplate the beauty on the face of Christ and to experience the depths of his love” (Rosarium Virginis Mariae, 1).

 

St. Josemaria Escriva said, “The Rosary is a prayer very pleasing to our Lady, which has been part of the life of Catholics for many centuries. At the same time, it is a meditation on the mysteries of the life of our Lord and his Mother.

“Therefore, I recommend it with all my heart, also as a prayer that can be done as a family, although you shouldn’t force your young children to pray it . . . if they want to join the others, fine; if not, let them be, and eventually they will come. It has to be something voluntary” (Notes, November 17, 1972).

Queenship of Mary

Coronation of Our Lady Gentile da FabrianoToday is the octave day of the Solemnity of the Assumption and we honor Mary in her Queenship.

There are a few times during the liturgical year that the Church uses royal titles for the God and the Mother of God. There may be a slight disconnect for some with the use of titles that denote royalty but what we understand to be regal, majestic, and powerful in this world with kings and queens, it is not at all the same for God and the Mother of God. Indeed, the world’s royals have had, and continue to have a certain amount of power and privilege. What we attribute to the world’s elite is not what we attribute to the Divine. Our theology says that we understand on this plain is far exceeded when speaking of God. For example fatherhood is not the same as Divine Fatherhood; biological father is imperfect but the perfection we have in God is utterly different.

So, what do we say about Mary’s Queenship? Mary is the sinless Virgin who humbly accepted God’s will for her; as a mother she experience a life of great suffering with the death of her Son; Mary’s Queenship exists in the sense that her motherly love and concern for all of us is total and majestic. It is with a special concern for our salvation wrought through her Son’s saving Paschal Mystery of the Cross and Resurrection finds a place in our devotion. Her is a key point: Mary has a queenship, in fact, Queen Mother, because her Son is King. Without this connection to Jesus, the title falls away.

Called a queen does not replace Mary’s essential role as mother. As John Paul said, “her queenship remains a corollary of her particular maternal mission and simply expresses the power conferred on her to carry out that mission.” She is not exclusive in her concern for all of the Father’s creation: her particular mission is for all humanity.

Mary’s mission is recognized as St Germanus preached about Her: “You [Mary] dwell spiritually with us and the greatness of your vigilance over us makes your communion of life with us stand out” (Horn. 1, PG 98, 344).

Vatican II spoke of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin in “body and soul into heavenly glory,” and also teaches Mary was “exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things, that she might be the more fully conformed to her Son, the Lord of lords (cf. Rv 19:16) and conqueror of sin and death” (Lumen gentium, n. 59).

Pope Pius XII instituted the feast of the Queenship of Mary to be celebrated on May 31st, the last day of the month dedicated to Our Lady. The Second Vatican Council liturgical reform moved the feast to today, the octave day of the Assumption.

Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Dormition Solesmes AbbeyWe have the great Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary today! We honor the transitus of the Mother of God because what happened to her, is also the gift God wants to give to us. The commemoration of the death of the Blessed Virgin Mary is known as the Assumption because of the tradition that her body did not decay but that she was raised up, body and soul, into heaven. The Eastern Churches call today’s commemoration the Dormition, or falling asleep. The Assumption tradition was already present among right-believing/worshipping Christians in the sixth century. It was thought at the beginning of the 20th century that since that this doctrine so widespread and after consulting the views of the world’s bishops, Pope Pius XII formally and infallibly declared the doctrine of the Assumption to be part of the authentic and ancient dogma of the universal Church on 1 November 1950.

Saint Robert Bellarmino reflects: “And who, I ask, could believe that the ark of holiness, the dwelling place of the Word of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit, could be reduced to ruin? My soul is filled with horror at the thought that this virginal flesh which had begotten God, had brought him into the world, had nourished and carried him, could have been turned into ashes or given over to be the food of worms.”

I think Father David Petras gives an important sum of the feast in this way: This is the mystery the ends of the earth celebrate today, for it has transformed the meaning of human life, and “through he holy Dormition, the world is given new life.”

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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