Friday, September 12, 2014

Feast of Holy Name of Mary

The feast of the Holy name of Mary is one of the feast we Filipinos celebrate that is peculiar to us. As I browse the United States Catholic Bishops Conference I have not find any indication that they are celebrating this feast. I believe, that it is extended to us as our history points out that our faith was handed to us through the Spaniards of which they have given an Indult to celebrate this feast since 1513 to the diocese of  Cuenca in Spain through the Pope Julius II. It was then celebrated with its own office every September 15.  With the reform of the Breviary by Saint Pius V in 1568, it was abolished. His predecessor pope Sixtus  V restored it in 1588 changing the date to September 17. From there the devotion spread though the diocese of Toledo  in 1622  extended by Pope Gregory XV and eventually to all Spain and kingdom of Naples.

There is no material that can pinpoit the reason for giving the Indult to the diocese of Cuenca, Spain, However, the reference we usually used today is the victory gained by the new to be crowned king of Poland after the death of its king Michael Wisniowiecki, in the person of John Sobieski. His many victorious exploits against the Turks, Cossack and Tartars who march behind the banner of the Blessed Virgin Mary. One of the famous battle was his defense of the the Vienna wall against a huge Turkish forces on September 12, 1683 

It was only moved to its present date by Pope St. Pius X in 1911 and continues until now as an optional memorial.

Is this feast competes to the feast of the Holy Name of Jesus. Surely, it is not. What does it signifies then. Our biblical reference come from the Gospel of Luke 1:27, and the virgin's name is Mary.Jesus' Mother is named Mary, it is the name God used to identify the mother of God that will guide the Son of the Living God. It is the name that fulfills the prophecy that will crushed the head of the serpent. Mary is the name that will accompany Jesus, the twelve apostles and the first Christian community in the road towards the kingdom of God,The Church is rightly on her path as we pray; Hail Mary full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy, Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

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