One Minute Reflection –8 September – ‘The only Mother worthy of the One who created her.’

One Minute Reflection –8 September – Feast of theNativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Readings: Micah 5:1-4a or Romans 8:28-30, Psalms 13:6, 6, Matthew 1:1-16, 18-23

Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son – Matthew 1:23

REFLECTION – “Come, you nations; come, all peoples of every race and language, every age and rank. Joyfully let us celebrate the nativity of the whole world’s joy! If even the pagans honour the birthday of their king … what ought not we to do to honour that of the Mother of God, through whom all humanity has been transformed and the pain of Eve, our first mother, has been turned to joy? For Eve heard God’s sentence: “You will bring forth children in pain” (Gn 3:16) but Mary: “Rejoice, most highly favoured … the Lord is with you” (Lk 1:28). …

Let all creation celebrate and sing the holy childbirth of a holy woman, for she has brought a lasting treasure into the world. … Through her, the creative Word of God has been united to the whole creation and we celebrate the ending of human barrenness, the ending of the sickness that kept us from possessing all our good. … Nature has given way to grace … As the Virgin Mother of God had to be born of barren Anna, so nature remained without fruit until grace had produced its own. It was to open the womb of its mother, she who would give birth to “The Firstborn of all creation” in whom “all things hold together” (Col 1:15,17).

O blessed couple, Joachim and Anna! All creation owes you thanks; through you it has offered the Creator the best of all His gifts: a Mother worthy of veneration, the only Mother worthy of the One who created her. ”- St John Damascene (675-749) Monk, Theologian, Father and Doctor of the Church – Homily on the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, 1-2 (cf SC 80, p. 48)

PRAYER – Lord God, the day of our salvation dawned when the Blessed Virgin gave birth to Your Son. As we celebrate her nativity, grant us Your grace and Your peace. Through Christ, our Lord, Your Son in union with the Holy Spirit. Mary, Mother of God, pray for us, amen.


Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary – 8 September

Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary – 8 September – The Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the day on which Christians East and West commemorate the birth of Mary, the Mother of God, was celebrated as early as the sixth century.   We know that from the fact that Saint Romanos the Melodist, an Eastern Christian who composed many of the hymns used in the Eastern Catholic and Eastern Orthodox liturgies, composed a hymn for the feast at that time and it probably originated after the Council of Ephesus in 431, which established her right to the title of “Mother of God.”   Patronages: • chefs, cooks and restauranteurs• coffee house owners or keepers
• distillers• drapers• fish dealers or fishmongers• gold workers or goldsmiths• needle and pin makers• potters• silk workers• silver workers or silversmiths• tile makers• 14 cities

The Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary spread to Rome in the seventh century but it took a couple of more centuries before it was celebrated throughout the West.Birth_of_St_Mary_in_Santa_Maria_Novella_in_Firenze_by_Domenico_GhirlandaioBirth-of-the-Virgin-Mary-1500-56a1089f3df78cafdaa83d40

HISTORY:  Even though we cannot trace the celebration of the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary back any further than the sixth century, the source for the story of the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary is much older.   The earliest documented version is found in the Protoevangelium of James, an apocryphal gospel written about C 150. From the Protoevangelium of James, we learn the names of Mary’s parents, Joachim and Anna, as well as the tradition that the couple was childless until an angel appeared to Anna and told her that she would conceive.  (Many of the same details appear also in the later apocryphal Gospel of the Nativity of Mary.)BIRTH OF MARY MY EDIT

WHY 8 SEPTEMBER:  The traditional date of the feast, September 8, falls exactly nine months after the feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.  Perhaps because of its close proximity to the feast of the Assumption of Mary, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary is not celebrated today with the same solemnity as the Immaculate Conception.   It is, nonetheless, a very important feast, because it prepares the way for the birth of Christ.  It is also an unusual feast, because it celebrates a birthday.

WHY DO WE CELEBRATE THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY’S BIRTHDAY?:  The feasts of saints are traditionally celebrated on the day of their death because that is the date on which they entered into eternal life.   And, indeed, we also celebrate the Blessed Virgin Mary’s entrance into Heaven on August 15, the Feast of the Assumption.

There are only three people whose birthdays have traditionally been celebrated by Christians.   Jesus Christ, at Christmas, Saint John the Baptist and the Blessed Virgin Mary. And we celebrate all three birthdays for the same reason:  All three were born without Original Sin.   Christ, because He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and is God;  Mary, because she was kept free from the stain of Original Sin by the action of God in His foreknowledge that she would agree to be the mother of Christ; and Saint John, because he was blessed in the womb by the presence of his Saviour when Mary, pregnant with Jesus, came to aid her cousin Elizabeth in the final months of Elizabeth’s pregnancy (an event we celebrate in the Feast of the Visitation).

Readings: Micah 5:1-4A or Romans 8:28-30;   Psalm 13:6AB, 6C;  Matthew 1:1-16, 18-23 or Matthew 1:18-23