Daily Catholic Advent Reflections: Day 6 THE FEAST OF MARY'S IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

Written By: Thomas Mulcahy

Prefatory note on the importance of devotion to Mary’s Immaculate Conception. Mary entered human existence by a remarkable grace that preserved her from original sin, and which set her apart to become the Mother of God and the harbinger of God's own human existence in the person of Jesus. Mary's Immaculate Conception thus warrants a special devotion, and wearing the Miraculous Medal (first called the medal of the Immaculate Conception), and saying the prayer each morning, "Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you,' is one way to effectively practice this devotion. Saints who have been devoted to Mary's Immaculate Conception include Saint Catherine Laboure, Saint Bernadette, Saint Maximilian Kolbe, and Blessed Mother Teresa (whose nuns have given out millions of Miraculous Medals).

Father Faber talks about the power of this devotion to Mary's Immaculate Conception; he indicates that her Immaculate Conception "is the first dawn of the world's redemption." He further indicates that devotion to Mary's Immaculate Conception is calculated to help us greatly in our "present needs...against the torrent of modern impurity" (and Faber was writing around 150 years ago!, so how much more do we need this devotion now!). Perhaps you know someone battling impurity: here is a devotion "eminently calculated" to sanctify our unruly passions. Faber recommends immense devotion to Mary and her Immaculate Conception, calling such devotion "a special power with God." Of the power of Mary's mediation Saint Pope John Paul II once said:

"In Mary's case we have a special and exceptional mediation...Jesus Christ prepared her ever more completely to become for all people their 'mother in the order of grace' "
(Saint Pope John Paul II, Mother of the Redeemer, 39).

This "preparation" began with the Immaculate Conception. If you are interested in the Miraculous Medal devotion, I recommend you read about the amazing conversion story of a Jewish man, Alphonse Ratisbonne. See

The Miraculous Conversion of Alphonse Ratisbonne

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