Who is the Immaculate Conception?
by Jan Rynearson
Mary, the Mother of God
Feast of the Immaculate Conception: Dec. 8
Claim to fame: The mother of God, Mother of
Jesus, wife of St. Joseph and greatest of all
What Made Her a Saint: Maryâ€™s life and her
role in the history of salvation is prefigured in
the Old Testament, while the events of her life are
recorded in the New Testament. The archangel Gabriel
appeared to her and asked her to become the mother
of Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit. Her “yes”
is a model of trust and faith. When her cousin
Elizabeth acknowledged Mary as the Mother of God,
Mary burst forth into the Magnificat. Mary was at
the foot of the cross when Jesus died, and was
present in the upper room with the apostles when the
Holy Spirit descended on all of them.
Best Quote: Jesus performed his first miracle
at Cana in response to his motherâ€™s request. Her
words, “Do as he commands,” have meaning for all
Christians as they walk their faith journeys.
How she died: No scriptural reference
concerns Maryâ€™s last years on earth. According to
one tradition, she went to Ephesus; another
tradition states that she remained in Jerusalem. The
belief that Maryâ€™s body was assumed into heaven is
one of the oldest in the church. Pope Pius XII
declared this belief to be Catholic dogma in 1950.
The dogma of the Immaculate Conception, that Mary
was free of original sin at the moment of her
conception, was proclaimed by Pope Pius IX in 1854.
Prayer: Hail, holy Queen, Mother of Mercy!
Our life, our sweetness, and our hope! To thee do we
cry, poor banished children of Eve, to thee do we
send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this
valley, of tears. Turn, then, most gracious
advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us; and after
this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of thy
womb, Jesus; O clement, O loving, O sweet virgin
Mary. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God that we may
be made worthy of the promises of Christ.