Tag Archives: schakeres

The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

December 8: Patronal Feast Day of the United States of America On December 8 each year we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  A solemnity is the highest ranking feast day on our liturgical calendar, and this particular feast day is also a holy day of obligation.  And yet the Immaculate Conception might be the most misunderstood of all our feast days.  If you were to poll Catholics as to what we are celebrating on this feast day, most would respond that we are celebrating Mary’s conception of Jesus.  But …

Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Saint Nicholas

On December 6 we celebrate the feast day of Saint Nicholas. Even though this feast is an optional memorial on our liturgical calendar, Saint Nicholas is one of the best known Advent Saints, and perhaps one of the most widely known  of all the saints!  It has even been said that aside from Mary, the Mother of Jesus, Saint Nicholas has been depicted by more artists than any other saint.  While there are numerous legends about Saint Nicholas, we actually have very few historical facts about his life.  In fact, about the only thing we …

Tagged , | Leave a comment

1st Sunday of Advent: Happy New Liturgical Year!

The word “advent” means “coming”. The Church teaches us that during Advent we wait for two comings of Christ: we prepare to celebrate Christmas, when Christ first came into the world; and, we wait for Christ’s second coming at the end of time. (See General Norms for the Liturgical Year and Calendar, Paragraph 39, from Documents on  the Liturgy, 1963-1979, Conciliar, Papal and Curial Texts © 1982, ICEL.) Advent begins at sundown the eve of the fourth Sunday before Christmas and concludes at sundown on Christmas Eve.  The First Sunday of Advent also heralds the …

Tagged , , , | Leave a comment