by Mike Church
It is significant to note that this feast day is only one of the only three that celebrates birthdays in the Church, an honor Our Lady shares with her beloved and adorable Son, Jesus (December 25), and the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist (June 24).
In the United States the name Mary was the most popular name given to girls up until 1961, today it is currently ranked #126.
Saint Augustine says of the birth of the Blessed Vrigin Mary.
“She is the flower of the field from whom bloomed the precious lily of the valley. Through her birth the nature inherited from our first parents is changed.”
Augustine cites the Creation narrative of Genesis as the Fathers proclaimed it to be true as the stem from which the Christian Faith comes; i.e. the story of the Holy Family and of the birth and life of Our Lord and Our Lady is one of transformation; as the good of Adam transformed to The Fallen Adam so too the story of redemption flows; from virgin to Virgin Mother; from tender child whisked to and hidden in Egypt to Man-God; from carpenter to foster parent of the Word Incarnate.
Dom Prosper Gueranger, author of the Liturgical Year writes of this day:
Queen of angels, thou art our Queen also; accept us as thy liegemen. On this day, when the first movement of thy holy soul was towards God, and the first smile of thy lovely eye was for thy happy parents, may holy Anne allow us to kneel and kiss thy little hand, already filled with the divine bounties of which thou art the predestined dispenser. And now, grow up, sweet little one! Let thy feet be strengthened to crush the serpent, and thy arms to carry the treasure of the world! Angels and men, the whole of nature, God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, all are awaiting the solemn moment, when Gabriel may fly down from heaven to hail thee full of grace, and bring thee the message of eternal love.
There is not a saint who ever lived who did not in some way have a devotion to Our Lady, let us follow them as we follow Our Lord’s own benediction to Marian devotion “son, behold thy mother”.