By tradition, the Catholic Church dedicates each month of the year to a certain devotion. In December, it is the Immaculate Conception
. (The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception
, the patronal feast of the United States and a Holy Day of Obligation
, falls in this month). The Immaculate Conception of Mary represents God's saving grace at work, in recognition of Mary's complete submission to His Will.
Some or all of the following prayers can be incorporated into our daily prayers during this month.
This brief prayer, known as an aspiration
, is most famous for its presence on the Miraculous Medal, one of the most popular Catholic sacramentals. "Conceived without sin" is a reference to Mary's Immaculate Conception.
In this prayer to the Virgin Mary, the Immaculate Conception, we ask for the assistance we need in order to avoid sin. Just as we might ask our own mother for help, we turn to Mary, "Mother of God and my Mother," that she may intercede for us.
The beautiful prayer of praise to the Blessed Virgin Mary was written by Saint Ephrem the Syrian
, a deacon and doctor of the Church
who died in 373. Saint Ephrem is one of the Eastern fathers of the Church most often invoked in support of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.
This theologically rich prayer was written by Pope Pius XII in 1954 in honor of the 100th anniversary of the promulgation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.