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Category:Blessed Virgin Mary

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The Blessed Virgin Mary is the Mother of Jesus Christ.

Mother of God, Queen of Heaven, Mother of the Church, Mediatrix, Co-Redemptrix, Our Lady
Born: September 8 (Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
Died: August 15 (Assumption of Mary)
Honored in: Catholicism
Canonized: Pre-Congregation
Major shrine: Santa Maria Maggiore, Basilica of Guadalupe (see Shrines to the Virgin Mary)
Attributes: Blue mantle, crown of 12 stars, pregnant woman, roses, woman with child, holding the Child Jesus at her side while pointing to Him as the source of salvation for mankind

Feast Days in the Roman Catholic Church:
December 8 - Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Holy Day of Obligation
January 1 - Mary, Mother of God, Holy Day of Obligation
August 15 - The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Holy Day of Obligation

Most prominent Marian feast days:
January 1 - Mary, Mother of God
January 8 - Our Lady of Prompt Succor
February 2 - Purification of the Virgin
February 11 - Our Lady of Lourdes
March 25 - Annunciation by Archangel Gabriel (it may be either moved to the day before Palm Sunday should this date be on Holy Week; or to the Monday after the second Sunday of Easter if this date falls on either Friday or Saturday of Holy Week or during Easter Week)
April 26 - Our Lady of Good Counsel
May 1 - Queen of Heaven
May 13 - Our Lady of Fátima
May 24 - Mary Help of Christians
May 31 - Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
1 day after Ascension of Jesus - Our Lady of the Apostles
1 day after Pentecost - Our Lady of Holy Church
June 27 - Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Immaculate Heart of Mary (Saturday after Sacred Heart of Jesus) (9 days after Corpus Christi)
July 16 - Our Lady of Mount Carmel
August 2 - Our Lady of Angels
August 5 - Dedication of the Basilica of Saint Mary Major
August 15 - The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven
August 21 - Our Lady of Knock
August 22 - Queenship of Mary
August 22 - Black Madonna of Częstochowa
August 31 - The Virgin Mary Mediatrix
September 8 - Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
September 12 - The Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary
September 15 - Our Lady of Sorrows (also known as Mater Dolorosa)
September 19 - Our Lady of La Salette
September 24 - Our Lady of Walsingham, Feast of Our Lady of Ransom
October 7 - Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary
November 16 - Our Lady of Mercy
November 21 - Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
December 8 - Feast of the Immaculate Conception
December 12 - Our Lady of Guadalupe
Patronage: See Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary

---excerpt from the Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Mary - Hebrew Miriam.
The wife of Joseph, the mother of Jesus, called the "Blessed Virgin Mary," though never so designated in Scripture (Matthew 2:11; Acts 1:14). Little is known of her personal history. Her genealogy is given in Luke 3. She was of the tribe of Judah and the lineage of David (Psalms 132:11; Luke 1:32). She was connected by marriage with Elizabeth, who was of the lineage of Aaron (Luke 1:36). While she resided at Nazareth with her parents, before she became the wife of Joseph, the angel Gabriel announced to her that she was to be the mother of the promised Messiah (Luke 1:35). After this she went to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who was living with her husband Zacharias (probably at Juttah, Joshua 15:55; Joshua 21:16, in the neighborhood of Maon), at a considerable distance, about 100 miles, from Nazareth. Immediately on entering the house she was saluted by Elizabeth as the mother of her Lord, and then forthwith gave utterance to her hymn of thanksgiving, known as the Magnificat, (Luke 1:46; compare 1 Samuel 2:1). After three months Mary returned to Nazareth to her own home. Joseph was supernaturally made aware (Matthew 1:18) of her condition, and took her to his own home. Soon after this the decree of Augustus (Luke 2:1) required that they should proceed to Bethlehem (Micah 5:2), some 80 or 90 miles from Nazareth; and while they were there they found shelter in the inn or khan provided for strangers (Luke 2:6, Luke 2:7). But as the inn was crowded, Mary had to retire to a place among the cattle, and there she brought forth her Son, who was called Jesus (Matthew 1:21), because He was to save His people from their sins. This was followed by the presentation in the temple, the flight into Egypt, and their return in the following year and residence at Nazareth (Matthew 2). There for thirty years Blessed Virgin Mary, the wife of Joseph the carpenter, resides, filling her own humble sphere, and pondering over the strange things that had happened to her. During these years only one event in the history of Jesus is recorded, viz., His going up to Jerusalem when twelve years of age, and His being found among the doctors in the temple (Luke 2:41). Probably also during this period Joseph died, for he is not again mentioned. After the commencement of our Lord's public ministry, the Blessed Virgin Mary was there - from His first miracle at Cana to His death on the Cross. A year and a half after Jesus' first miracle, we find her at Capernaum (Matthew 12:46, Matthew 12:48, Matthew 12:49), where Christ uttered the memorable words, "Who is My mother? and who are My brethren? And He stretched forth His hand, and said, Behold My mother and My brethren! For whoever shall do the will of My Father in Heaven is My brother and sister and mother." Who did the will of God more perfectly than Jesus' mother? From before Jesus' conception until after His death, she was there - prayerful, pondering, mostly silent and unnoticed. We find her at the Cross along with her sister Mary, and Mary Magdalene, and Salome, and other women (John 19:26). At that hour, Jesus entrusted His most beloved mother into the care of the beloved disciple, John, who took her to his own abode, as each who love our Savior should do to His dear mother. She was with the little company in the upper room after the Ascension and at Pentecost. (Acts 1:14). She instructed the Apostles and Evangelists, as it was only her testimony about the Annunciation, Visitation, Nativity, Presentation of Jesus in the Temple, and the Finding of Jesus in the Temple could have been used in the Gospel of St. Matthew and the Gospel of St. Luke. The time and manner of her death are unknown.

Click on any of the thumbnails below to get large totally free public domain images of the Blessed Mother. For pictures of Our Lady of Lourdes or other titles of our Blessed Mother, click on the "Our Lady of Lourdes" or other subcategories below.

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