The month of June is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus with a Solemnity this year on June 11. The Immaculate Heart of Mary is celebrated on the following day. Both of these feasts are focused on love with the heart as a symbolic representation. The Sacred Heart of Jesus is a reflection on Jesus’ heart full of love for humanity, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary shows the fullness of Mary’s heart with love for the Savior.
Monday May 24th, 2021 is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church – a new Memorial in the Church calendar. Mary the Mother of Jesus is known by numerous titles in the Church, some of which are designated for celebration as Solemnities, Feasts or Memorials. Three Solemnities are Holy Days of Obligation, and some of the most well-known titles of Mary are celebrated on these days: Mary, Mother of God (Jan 1); Mary, Assumed into Heaven (Aug 15); and the Immaculate Conception (Dec 8).
May 1st is known as “May Day”, a celebration of working classes and laborers, that was started in 1889 in response to difficult working conditions and long hours during the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century. In order to incorporate the sacredness of work into the secular holiday, in 1955, Pope Pius XII instituted the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker to be celebrated on May 1st.
“Jesus, I trust in You”, a now familiar message, is from an image is less than 100 years old (1934) and Divine Mercy Sunday has been celebrated for only 20 years! The celebration of the 50 days of Easter continues this Sunday with the message: God loves all and His mercy is greater that sin. Sunday’s feast reminds all to call upon Him with trust, receive His mercy, and let it flow through to others. Thus, all will come to share this joy.
After emerging from 40 days of Lent, now is the time to rejoice in the 50 days of the Easter Season. One practice to aid in keeping the joy of Easter alive is the praying of the Via Lucis – The Stations of the Resurrection. Via Lucis is Latin for Way of Light.
The Feast of The Annunciation occurs on March 25th of each year, nine months before Christmas Day. The Annunciation commemorates Mary’s “Fiat” – the acceptance of her role as the Mother of Jesus. The scene is a favorite topic for inspirational stained-glass windows as shown below.
Friday March 19, 2021 is the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Feast Day is more special in this Year of St. Joseph proclaimed by Pope Francis to run from December 8, 2020 to December 8, 2021 to mark the 150th anniversary of the declaration of St. Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church.
The Feast Day of Our Lady of Lourdes was joyfully celebrated for nine days at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Halasuru, Bangalore, India. The festivities culminated with a trilingual celebration (Tamil, Kannada, English) on February 14, 2021 at the Grotto on the church grounds. The culminating celebration included a High Mass, a Procession, the Rosary and Adoration and Benediction.
Thursday February 11th is the Feast Day of Our Lady of Lourdes – a celebration of Our Lady’s first appearance on February 11, 1858 (also a Thursday) to a young Bernadette Soubrious at a grotto near Lourdes, France. The Feast Day was joyously celebrated last year at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Halasuru, Bangalore, India – read all about it here, and see the Schedule of Events for 2021 too!
Today, January 20th, the Feast of Saint Sebastian, is a moment to visit (virtually) some churches in India with a special dedication to this early Christian saint. Saint Sebastian is the patron saint of soldiers and athletes – and also a protector from plague. The saint is usually pictured as a young man tied to a post/tree with his right arm tied over his head and left arm behind his back – with visible wounds in his body from arrows.