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Parish Devotion for December 28th 2018 – Month of The Immaculate Conception – Fridays
28th December 2018
Month of The Immaculate Conception
December is dedicated to the Immaculate Conception
The greatest privilege possessed by Our Blessed Lady, next to the Divine Maternity itself, is that of the Immaculate Conception. And it is only because of the Divine Maternity that Mary was immaculately conceived. For many years many of the greatest saints in the Church denied that she had been given this privilege. They did this not because they wanted to deprive her of any honor that might properly be given to her, but because it seemed to them to deny that Christ was the universal Redeemer, the Redeemer even of His own mother. When finally it was explained that Christ was her preventive Redeemer, that because of His redemptive death on the cross she was saved from the stain of original sin, the way was made clear for papal definition of the Immaculate Conception in 1854.
But among non-Catholics the meaning of the term is still not understood. Some identify it with virgin birth and suppose it is a denial that Joachim was really our Blessed Lady’s father. One great American newspaper once carried the story that by the Immaculate Conception it was meant that Our Blessed Lady was conceived in mid-air, as the artist Murillo has imaginatively pictured her. But the meaning of the term Immaculate Conception is simply this:
Because of the merits of her divine Son, Our Blessed Lady was from the very moment of her own conception free from the stain of original sin. In that first moment she was endowed with the sanctifying grace that God had intended should be the endowment of each of us at conception, had Adam, the father of the human race, not sinned. Our Blessed Lady, endowed with an unspeakable fullness of sanctifying grace, saved from all the weakness, error, and confusion of sin, is incomparably the highest and the first of mere mortals.
Many Protestants express themselves as scandalised at such honour paid to Our Blessed Lady. They say that to honour Mary so is to dishonour Christ. But Cardinal Newman answered them in the verses written by Father Frederick Faber, a few of which run: They know but little of thy worth who speak these heartless words to me; For what did Jesus love on earth One half so tenderly as thee? G. K. Chesterton tells us of his own Protestant boyhood, that the elders of the parish church objected to using a statue of the Virgin and child, until someone proposed an acceptable solution—that the Child be removed from His mother’s arms! As Chesterton remarked, they seemed to think that the Virgin was more dangerous when she held the Child, as though He were some sort of weapon. “Those holy heads are too near together,” Chesterton beautifully says, “for the haloes not to mingle and cross.”
The Joyful Mysteries
|The Annunciation||The Visitation||The Nativity||The Presentation||The Finding of Jesus in the Temple|
The Luminous Mysteries
|The Baptism in the Jordan||The Wedding at Cana||Proclamation of the Kingdom||The Transfiguration||Institution of the Eucharist|
The Sorrowful Mysteries
|The Agony in the Garden||The Scourging at the Pillar||The Crowning with Thorns||The Carrying of the Cross||The Crucifixion|
The Glorious Mysteries
|The Resurrection||The Ascension||The Descent of the
|The Assumption of the
Blessed Virgin Mary
|The Coronation of the
Blessed Virgin Mary