"Let us not imagine that we obscure the glory of the Son by the great praise we lavish on the Mother; for the more she is honored, the greater is the glory of her Son. There can be no doubt that whatever we say in praise of the Mother gives equal praise to the Son." St. Bernard of Clairvaux
“But as great as was St. Paul’s devotion to our Lord, much greater was that of the Blessed Virgin: because she was his mother, and because she had him and all his sufferings actually before her eyes, and because she had the long intimacy of thirty years with him, and because she was from her special sanctity so unspeakably near him in spirit. When, then, he was mocked, bruised, scourged, and nailed to the Cross, she felt as keenly as if every indignity and torture inflicted on him was struck at herself. She could have cried out in agony at every pang of his. This is called her compassion, or her suffering with her Son, and it arose from this that she was the ‘Vessel of Devotion’ unlike any other.”
—St. John Henry Newman, p. 155
Liturgy of the Hours
Divine OfficeOffice of Readings
"Beloved, do not look for revenge but leave room for the wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord." Rather, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head." Do not be conquered by evil but conquer evil with good." Romans 12:19-21
Saint of the Day
St. Patapios (4th c.) was born in Thebes, Egypt. His parents were prominent Christians, and his father was the governor of the region. Patapios was well-educated by the best tutors, and his learning awakened in him a desire to shun the world and its materialism and seek a life of asceticism. Inspired by the manner of life of the Church Fathers, Patapios became a desert hermit upon his father's death. He later moved away to live in a cave near Corinth, and then sailed to Constantinople to live as a simple monk in the Monastery of Blachernae. There he fasted, prayed, and performed miracles until his death at the age of 83. In the early 20th century, a local priest planning renovations discovered his relics after the saint appeared to him in a dream and informed him where they were located. His relics were found the next day holding a large wooden cross on his chest and a parchment scroll bearing his name. St. Patapios' feast day is December 8th.
The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic Church that "God freely chose Mary from all eternity to be the Mother of his Son. In order to carry out her mission she herself was conceived immaculate. This means that, thanks to the grace of God and in anticipation of the merits of Jesus Christ, Mary was preserved from original sin from the first instant of her conception" (Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church). Chosen by God to be the Mother of the Savior and the "New Eve," Mary Immaculate is a type of the Church and the perfect model of holiness for all Christians. Mary under this title is the patroness of the United States of America, and the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception is a Holy Day of Obligation.See More About Today's Feast
Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary
Consecration Day: Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary (a Holy Day of Obligation) According to St. Louis de Montfort, at the end of the 33-day preparation we should go to Confession and receive Holy Communion with the intention of giving ourselves to Jesus Christ as slaves of love, by the hands of Mary. After Communion, make your Act of Consecration. Write this prayer, or have it written, and sign it the same day the consecration is made.
Month of the Immaculate Conception
Devotion of the Month
The month of December is dedicated to the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Chosen before time to be the Mother of God Incarnate, Jesus Christ, God created Mary perfect and full of grace, preserving her from the stain of Original Sin. Mary Immaculate is the most beautiful fruit of the work of redemption accomplished by her Son, thereby making her the perfect model of holiness for all Christians.Find a Devotional or Sacramental
Prayer for the Dead
In your hands, O Lord, we humbly entrust our brothers and sisters.
In this life you embraced them with your tender love;
deliver them now from every evil and bid them eternal rest.
The old order has passed away: welcome them into paradise,
where there will be no sorrow, no weeping or pain,
but fullness of peace and joy with your Son and the Holy
Spirit forever and ever. Amen.
Prayer of Spiritual Communion
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there, and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
Prayer for the Holy Father
Almighty and everlasting God, have mercy upon Thy servant, Pope Francis, our Supreme Pontiff, and direct him, according to Thy loving kindness, in the way of eternal salvation; that, of Thy gift, he may ever desire that which is pleasing unto Thee and may accomplish it with all his might. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen. Our Father. Hail Mary.