Shakespeare said, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Perhaps that’s true, but when it comes to Jesus’ mother, Catholics have many ways of addressing her. Names connect us to one another and to God. In the Book of Exodus, when Abraham first encounters God, he asks the Lord his name. The Lord responds, “I am who I am” (Ex 3:14). The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that God revealed himself to us by making his name known (see No. 203). Likewise, the many names of Mary reveal her many aptitudes such as saint, helpmate and mother of us all.
On May 13 we celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. The year 2017 marked the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady to the three shepherd children at Fatima, Portugal, where the Blessed Mother appeared once each month from May until Oct. 13 October. In today’s post you’ll meet the three children to whom Mary appeared in 1917: Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta.
Who says May altars have to be fancy or time-consuming? Not Catholic mom Sarah Reinhard. Here’s a three-step way to get one ready right now!
Every year on March 25, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Annunciation. Our greatest saint, Mary did one simple thing. She listened to God’s will—that she was to be the mother of Jesus—and she accepted God’s will. Mary did not immediately think of herself, but set out to visit her cousin, Elizabeth, to be with her at the birth of John the Baptist. We will celebrate this unselfish act on May 31, the Visitation. Read the complete reflection online.
The feast of the Holy Family, which is situated appropriately between Christmas and New Year’s Day, serves as a context for the events it bridges: the birth of Christ and the octave of Mary. Living in a loving manner sometimes can be most difficult within the family (the domestic Church), where intimate conflicts yield deep wounds, and where routine and familiarity can breed contempt and complacency. So we look to the Holy Family as models of fraternal love in a world of fractured family life and institutions. You’ll find the entire reflection online.