Tuesday, December 07, 2010

JEM@Blogger Specials: Immaculate... now and always!

(This is a foretaste of one of the newest additions to the site. Formerly called JEM@Blogger Specials, this shall be called Ur Special Dose. In form, it still follows the usual Ur Sunday Dose, but it is allotted for the Special Feasts and Solemnities which demand proper reflection. Apart from this, we are also to designate a special category for those blogposts which don't fall under the weekly post-series.
We are making this today, the eve of the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception to Mary. This is but a foretaste, like in Mary's role, being the foretaste of the dawning of salvation. :) )

Dec. 08, 2010
Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary
Principal Patroness of the Philippines
Holy Day of Obligation in the Philippines
Gn 3,9-15.20 || Eph 1,3-6.11-12
Lk 1,26-38


In Malabon City, December 8, 9 and 10 are considered "Blue Letter Days" because of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, and the ritual feasts of the place. The picture beside this reflection is the Canonically-crowned image of Our Lady under the title La Inmaculada Concepcion. This image was believed to be in existence for maybe 300+ years. Because of its miracles and wonders done to the whole Barrio Concepcion (currently a Barangay) and nearby areas, Pope John Paul II through a Papal Bull, decreed that the Image be canonically crowned. This was done in December 07, 1986 by the Late Jaime Cardinal Sin.

I admit, the Immaculate Conception is my most admired title of Mary. Aside from the fact that I'd studied in a catholic institution in Malabon City named after this title of Mary, I've grown up to be a servant from her guidance and inspiration. I became a part of the school choir, and from that time on, I began my service as a lay minister. I always say, Kung hindi dahil kay Maria, wala ako sa kung nasaan ako, at sa kakayahan ko ngayon. Si Maria ang may dahilan ng lahat, at siya ang nag-uudyok sa akin na lumapit sa kanyang Anak.

Okay, let's go back to holy business.

As we celebrate the Solemnity of Mary's Conception today, we may ask, Why do we need to celebrate this? What could be the main importance of the celebration?

We need to celebrate this because for one, this is our thanksgiving day. This is the Solemnity of the archipelago's Principal Patroness. And we go to church today to give thanks to the Lord for the many blessings He bestowed upon us, especially for the gift of the faith, of Mary and of her Son, Jesus.

Now, we go back to the History of the Church, back to the First Marian Dogma Ineffabilis Deus, which was defined by Pope Pius IX in 1854, to wit:

We declare, pronounce and define that the doctrine which holds that the Blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace of the Omnipotent God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of original sin, has been revealed by God, and therefore should firmly and constantly be believed by all the faithful.

Being the Mother of the Word Incarnate, Mary is never considered to be conceived with sin. It is impossible for God to dwell in a sinful temple. Mary is found to be sinless, fair, and incorrupt from the first moment of conception, that's the main reason why God chose to dwell in her.

As from Eve came sin and death (First Reading), through Mary came salvation and Life in Jesus Christ. We listen to Gabriel's words: Hail, full of Grace! The whole heavenly assembly call Mary full of Grace. Mary is conceived without sin; for this, to her was given the privilege of being the God-bearer, Theotokos in greek.

Because she was Immaculate, that's why she was taken to Heaven, body and spirit. As we pointed out, God does not will that the body of Mary experience corruption, being the Holy Mother of the Savior.

All these privileges because of her very special role to the History of Man's salvation. Being conceived without sin makes Mary that holy and gentle woman of all ages. That makes her hailed among all humankind. That makes her our Mother at the cross. That makes her receive the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. That makes her the Mother of the New Man now and always!

For this, we are called to celebrate this day, the beginning of the dawning of salvation of Man. We pray to the blessed Virgin, Immaculately Conceived, that we may have the strength to live in total holiness and surrender to Jesus Christ. Like her, may we continue to strive for a pure and holy life.

...And don't forget to go to church tomorrow! It's a Holy Day of Obligation.


O God, who by the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, did prepare a worthy dwelling place for your Son, we beseech you that, as by the foreseen death of this, your Son, you did preserve her from all stain, so too you would permit us, purified through her intercession, to come unto you. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever. Amen.

BïTZëëlöG_120710 :)

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