Saturday, September 13, 2008

Holy Name of Mary Feast ~~ September 12

May I take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy Feast of Mary. Today, we are celebrating the Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mary, having a Hebrew origin, means "The Beautiful." Indeed, she is as a beautiful blooming flower of the Lord God who has and continues to manifest endless favours upon her.
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Mary’s name was given her by God. He Himself told her parents, St. Joachim and St. Anne, to call her Mary. The name “Mary” means “lady” or “queen.” It also means “star of the sea.” What beautiful meanings! How perfect this name is for our Blessed Mother! She is truly our loving Queen and our Star. She will show us the way to reach the blessed kingdom of heaven.

The devotion to Jesus through Mary has been progressive throughout the entire history of the Holy Catholic Church. While some members of the Church have written about the Blessed Virgin Mary prior to the fourth century, it was not until then that her name had become rather popular among the Christian community.

Today, when we consider the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception that was proclaimed in 1854 by Pope Pius IX, we can now perceive why God had sent His Spirit to guide the Holy Catholic Church towards the granting of great honours to the Most Holy Name of Mary. According to this Dogma, "The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Saviour of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin. (Inneffabilis Deus 1854, cited in the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 491)

As the only human being, this excluding Jesus, who was free of all traces of sins and remained so throughout her life, the Blessed Virgin Mary achieved perfection where the first Eve had failed. As the Second Eve, the Blessed Virgin Mary, was elevated by God as the spiritual mother of mankind.

These honours, and the many more that have been bestowed upon the Blessed Virgin Mary leave no doubt in the mind of Catholics that her Most Holy Name, Mary, the Beautiful one, a name that has been elevated higher than all human beings and angels, is the fountain of superabundant graces that shower upon us sinners from the Throne of God.

So powerful is the Most Holy Name of Mary, that it is said that the devils fear the Queen of heaven to such a degree, that only on hearing her great name pronounced, they fly from those who seek her help as from a burning fire."

From the life of St. Bridget, we learn that the Blessed revealed to her "that there is not on earth a sinner, however devoid he may be of the love of God, from whom the devil is not obliged immediately to fly, if he invokes her holy name with a determination to repent." On another occasion, the Blessed Virgin Mary stated, "that all the devils venerate and fear her name to such a degree, that on hearing it, they immediately loosen the claws with which they hold the soul captive."

In view of all these great Marian blessings that have been bestowed from Heaven, let us today honour the Most Holy Name of Mary with great esteem so our loving Mother may continue to be praised in every nation on earth. And may our spiritual devotion not only last one day, but be extended to every day of the year.

Eternal Father, I offer You the most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus Christ , in union with the Masses said throughout the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the Universal Church, for those in my own home and in my family. Amen

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O Mary, Queen and Mother of Carmel, I come today to consecrate myself to thee, for my whole life is but a small return for the many graces and blessings that have come from God to me through thy immaculate hands.

Since thou look with special kindness on those who wear thy Scapular, I implore thee to strengthen my weakness with thy power, to enlighten the darkness of my mind with thy wisdom, and to increase in me Faith, Hope and Charity that I may repay each day my debt of humble homage to thee.

May thy Holy Scapular bring me thy special protection in my daily struggle to be faithful to thy Divine Son and to thee. May it separate me from all that is sinful in life and remind me constantly of my duty to imitate thy virtues.

From now on, I shall strive to live in God's Presence, and offer all to Jesus through thee. Dearest Holy Mother, support me by thy never-failing love and lead me to paradise through the merits of Christ and thy own intercession. Amen.


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