Today is my birthday. It’s also the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. Besides being my birthday which is an important event in my life I share this wonderful Marian feast. I don’t talk about her much, but Mary holds a special part in heart and it’s because of this feast I guess. My mother is the best model of Mary I have. Mom loves me more than anything else. She gave me life and on this day 57 years ago welcomed me into the world, her first born.
Mom made sure that I had a proper up-bringing and that included 9 years of Catholic primary school and a couple of years of Catholic high school. I don’t mean to imply that if you didn’t go to Catholic schools that you are somehow stunted because nothing could be further from the truth. But, giving her son those same chances she enjoyed and more were what was important in Mom’s life. Her devotion to Our Lady permeates her life and it touched mine too. Mary occupied an esteemed place in St. Francis of Assisi’s life too as the mother of Jesus. This prayer attributed to Francis bears that out.
Hail, holy Lady, most holy Queen,
Mary, Mother of God, ever Virgin.
You were chosen by the Most High Father in heaven,
consecrated by Him, with His most Holy Beloved Son and the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.
On you descended and still remains all the fullness of grace and every good.
Hail, His Palace.
Hail His Tabernacle.
Hail His Robe.
Hail His Handmaid.
Hail, His Mother.
and Hail, all holy Virtues, who, by grace and inspiration of the Holy Spirit, are poured into the hearts of the faithful so that from their faithless state, they may be made faithful servants of God through you.
Deo Gratias for 57 years of wonderful life and praise to the Holy Queen of Heaven.