The Blessed Virgin’s appearance at Tepeyac to Saint Juan Diego in 1531, was the beginning of a beautiful story of God’s and Mary’s love and care for the peoples of Mexico. As Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Blessed Virgin was named patroness of all of the Americas in 2003.
The Blessed Virgin has many, many titles--among them is Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Mount Carmel is in northern Israel and has long been the site of a monastery of religious monks. The entire Church celebrates this feast along with the Carmelite Monks and Nuns.
The principal biblical references to Mary’s sorrows are Simeon’s prediction about a sword piercing Mary’s soul, and Jesus’ words from the cross to Mary and to the beloved disciple. The two passages are brought together as prediction and fulfillment.
The rosary is a truly Catholic devotion. It is a form of prayer and meditation in honor of Mary and celebrates the mysteries of Jesus' and Mary’s lives. It has been called a miniature catechism highlighting the key events of our faith. Our Lady of the Rosary remembers Mary’s intercession and celebrates this popular devotion.
This feast celebrates Mary's presentation in the Temple by her parents Anna and Joachim. While it is not mentioned in Scripture, there is early evidence that this event was celebrated in both the Eastern and Western Churches.
Being an observant Jewish couple, it stands to reason that Mary and Joseph went to the Temple for Mary's purification—as prescribed by Mosaic Law—40 days after Jesus' birth. The blessing of candles and the procession of light were added to this feast, giving it the popular name “Candlemas.”
The notion of a queen is somewhat foreign to American ears, but this feast of Mary recognizes her role in the Kingdom of her Son, Jesus. If Jesus is king, Mary is certainly queen. And the title—or its surrogate—goes back centuries in the Church, as Mary has been praised for her position in salvation history and among the people of God.
Saint Adalbert of Prague received his name from his mentor, Saint Adalbert of Magdeburg. Ordained a bishop early in life, Adalbert of Prague became a faithful defender and preacher of the faith. In return for his faithfulness Saint Adalbert received criticism, exile, and martyrdom.
An African by birth, Saint Adrian was assigned by the pope as Archbishop of Canterbury. Feeling unworthy, he declined the position, but the pope sent him to Canterbury anyway where he became an abbot and teacher.