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The Liturgical Year

The Immaculate Conception: Patron of the US

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

OnThe Immaculate Conceptions December 8, 1854, Pope Pius IX promulgated the infallible dogma of the Immaculate Conception. This ex cathedra statement made official the eternal sinlessness of Mary, showing that from the moment of the creation of her soul she was granted a unique grace from God to be excluded from the stain of original sin, enabling her to carry Jesus Christ in her womb.

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Advent Symbols and Celebrations – Part II

Advent Symbols and Traditions Part II

Advent is a time of waiting, conversion and of hope, a preparation for the coming of the Messiah. The word Advent comes from the Latin advenio, meaning "to come to"; it refers to the coming of Christ. As with Part I, here are three more expressions of piety to prepare the way of the Lord.

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What you should know about Advent

The History of Advent

What is Advent? The word ‘Advent' is from the Latin ‘Adventus,' which means ‘coming.' Advent is the beginning of a new liturgical year (in the Western churches), and encompasses the span of time from the fourth Sunday before Christmas, until the Nativity of Our Lord is celebrated. The first Sunday of Advent is the Sunday nearest the feast of St. …

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Top Ten Advent Songs

Top Advent Songs

The season of Advent is fast approaching, but outside the Church, almost no one will notice. Before Thanksgiving dinner is even digested, we will be inundated with Christmas sales, Christmas TV specials, and of course, Christmas music. We’ll hear plenty of renditions of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, and White Christmas. If we’re lucky we’ll get some religious …

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St. Martin’s Day and Veterans’ Day

Saint Martin of Tours Feast Day

Today is Saint Martin's Day! Also known as Martinmas, Saint Martin's Day has long been an important feast in the Church. Traditionally marking the end of autumn and the harvest season, Saint Martin's Day originally began a period of forty days of fasting, like Lent. That season was eventually shortened into Advent as we know it now, but Saint Martin's Day still remains a major feast around the world, and has many colorful traditions associated with it.

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St. Leo the Great Meets Attila the Hun!

Saint Leo the Great

The Feast of St. Leo the Great is November 10 “Little is known about the early life of this man who proved to be such an extraordinary shepherd of the Catholic Church that he came to be known not only as Pope Saint Leo I, but also is one of the only two Popes in two thousand years to be …

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A Feast Day for the Mother Church

A Birthday for Saint John Lateran

When most people think about churches in Rome, the first one that immediately jumps to mind is the world-famous Saint Peter's basilica. The heart of Vatican City, it is the most visible location in the Catholic Church. What most people don't know, however, is that Saint Peter's isn't the “highest-ranking” church in Rome. That honor goes to the Archbasilica of …

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Five books and DVDs for the month of All Souls

Books and dvds for All Souls Day

Since Purgatory ranks right up there with Mary among the most misunderstood doctrines of the Catholic Church, we've put together a list of resources to you both understand and explain Purgatory and praying for the dead during the month of November.

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