We are celebrating St. Mary's Feast on 08th November 2019
† Rosary :- 8.00 AM
† Holy Eucharist :- 08.30 AM
† Satsang and Healing Prayer 11.00 AM to 02.00 PM
† Adoration : 06.00 AM
† Holy Eucharist : 06.20AM
Greetings! It is time once again to celebrate the Annual Diocesan Pilgrimage in honour of our Blessed Mother, at Bazpur. This year it is on 02.12.2018.
The Immaculate Conception is the conception of the Virgin Mary free from original sin by virtue of the merits of her son Jesus Christ. The Catholic Church teaches that God acted upon Mary in the first moment of her conception keeping her "immaculate".
The defined dogma of the Immaculate Conception states that the most Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first instance of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege granted by Almighty God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the human race, was preserved free from all stain of original sin [ab omni originalis culpae labe praeservatam immunem].
The definition concerns original sin only, and it makes no declaration about the Church's belief that the Blessed Virgin was sinless in the sense of freedom from actual or personal sin. The doctrine teaches that from her conception Mary, being always free from original sin, received the sanctifying grace that would normally come with baptism after birth.
A feast of the Conception of the Most Holy and All Pure Mother of God was celebrated in Syria on 8 December perhaps as early as the 5th century. The title of achrantos (spotless, immaculate, all-pure) refers to the holiness of Mary, not specifically to the holiness of her conception.
Mary's complete sinlessness and concomitant exemption from any taint from the first moment of her existence was a doctrine familiar to Greek theologians of Byzantium. Beginning with St. Gregory Nazianzen, his explanation of the "purification" of Jesus and Mary at the circumcision (Luke 2:22) prompted him to consider the primary meaning of "purification" in Christology (and by extension in Mariology) to refer to a perfectly sinless nature that manifested itself in glory in a moment of grace (e.g., Jesus at his Baptism). St. Gregory Nazianzen designated Mary as prokathartheisa (prepurified). Gregory likely attempted to solve the riddle of the Purification of Jesus and Mary in the Temple through considering the human natures of Jesus and Mary as equally holy and therefore both purified in this manner of grace and glory. Gregory's doctrines surrounding Mary's purification were likely related to the burgeoning commemoration of the Mother of God in and around Constantinople very close to the date of Christmas. Nazianzen's title of Mary at the Annunciation as "prepurified" was subsequently adopted by all theologians interested in his Mariology to justify the Byzantine equivalent of the Immaculate Conception. This is especially apparent in the Fathers St. Sophronios of Jerusalem and St. John Damascene, who will be treated below in this article at the section on Church Fathers. About the time of Damascene, the public celebration of the "Conception of St. Ann" (i.e., of the Theotokos in her womb) was becoming popular. After this period, the "purification" of the perfect natures of Jesus and Mary would not only mean moments of grace and glory at the Incarnation and Baptism and other public Byzantine liturgical feasts, but purification was eventually associated with the feast of Mary's very conception (along with her Presentation in the Temple as a toddler) by Orthodox authors of the 2nd millennium (e.g., St. Nicholas Cabasilas and Joseph Bryennius).
Father, you prepared the Virgin Mary to be the worthy mother of your Son. You let her share beforehand in the salvation Christ would bring by his death, and kept her sinless from the first moment of her conception. Help us by her prayers to live in your presence without sin. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
The details of the programme are given in the Poster.
Wishing all of you a fruitful Pilgrimage experience,
Yours in Our Lord,
Fr. Sunil Crasta
Parish Priest, Immaculate Conception Shrine