The Most Holy Name of Mary – 12 September

The Most Holy Name of Mary – 12 September

The Most Holy Name of Mary – 12 September

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The Feast of the Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary is an optional memorial celebrated in the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church on 12 September. It has been a universal Roman Rite feast since 1684, when Pope Innocent XI included it in the General Roman Calendar to commemorate the victory at the Battle of Vienna in 1683.  It was removed from the Church calendar by Annibale Bugnini, Secretary to the Commission for Liturgical Reform during Vatican II, but restored by Pope John Paul II in 2002, along with the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus.

In Hebrew, the name Mary is Miryam.  In Our Lady’s time, Aramaic was the spoken language, and the form of the name then in use was Mariam. In the book, The Wondrous Childhood of the Most Holy Mother of God, St. John Eudes offers meditations on seventeen interpretations of the name “Mary,” taken from the writings of “the Holy Fathers and by some celebrated Doctors”.  The name of Mary is venerated because it belongs to the Mother of God.

Meanings ascribed to Mary’s name by the early Christian writers and perpetuated by the Greek Fathers include: “Bitter Sea,” “Myrrh of the Sea”, “The Enlightened One,” “The Light Giver,” and especially “Star of the Sea.” Stella Maris was by far the favored interpretation. These etymologies suppose that the Hebrew form of the name is Maryãm, not Miryãm.  The Hebrew name of Mary, Miryãm, (in Latin Domina) means lady or sovereign.

The feast is a counterpart to the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus (January 3).   Its object is to commemorate all the privileges bestowed upon Mary by God and all the graces received through her intercession and mediation.

The entry in the Roman Martyrology about the feast speaks of it in the following terms:

The Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a day on which the inexpressible love of the
Mother of God for her Holy Child is recalled, and the eyes of the faithful are directed to
the figure of the Mother of the Redeemer, for them to invoke with devotion.

The feast day began in 1513 as a local celebration in Cuenca, Spain, celebrated on 15 September. In 1587 Pope Sixtus V moved the celebration to 17 September. Pope Gregory XV extended the celebration to the Archdiocese of Toledo in 1622.  In 1666 the Discalced Carmelites received permission to recite the Divine Office of the Name of Mary four times a year. In 1671 the feast was extended to the whole Kingdom of Spain. From there, the feast spread to all of Spain and to the Kingdom of Naples.

In 1683, the Polish king, John Sobieski, arrived at Vienna with his army on the octave of the Nativity of Mary. Before the Battle of Vienna, Sobieski placed his troops under the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In the following year, to celebrate the victory, Pope Innocent XI added the feast to the General Roman Calendar, assigning to it the Sunday within the octave of the Nativity of Mary.

The reform of Pope Pius X in 1911 restoRed to prominence the celebration of Sundays in their own right, after they had been often replaced by celebrations of the saints. The celebration of the Holy Name of Mary was therefore moved to 12 September.   Later in the same century, the feast was removed from the General Roman Calendar in 1969 in the reform of the Calendar by Pope Paul VI, as something of a duplication of the 8 September feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, but it did not cease to be a recognized feast of the Roman Rite, being mentioned in the Roman Martyrology on 12 September.  In 2002 Pope John Paul II restored the celebration to the General Roman Calendar.

 

Litany of the Holy Name of Mary

Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Son of Mary, hear us.
Son of Mary, graciously hear us.

Heavenly Father, of Whom Mary is the Daughter,
Have mercy on us.
Eternal Word, of Whom Mary is the Mother,
Have mercy on us.
Holy Spirit, of Whom Mary is the spouse,
Have mercy on us.
Divine Trinity, of Whom Mary is the Handmaid,
Have mercy on us.

Mary, Mother of the Living God, pray for us.
Mary, daughter of the Light Eternal, pray for us.
Mary, our light, etc.
Mary, our sister,
Mary, flower of Jesse,
Mary , issue of kings,
Mary, chief work of God,
Mary, the beloved of God,
Mary, Immaculate Virgin,
Mary, all fair,
Mary, light in darkness,
Mary, our sure rest,
Mary, house of God,
Mary, sanctuary of the Lord,
Mary, altar of the Divinity,
Mary, Virgin Mother,
Mary, embracing thy Infant God,
Mary, reposing with Eternal Wisdom,
Mary, ocean of bitterness,
Mary, Star of the Sea,
Mary, suffering with thine only Son,
Mary, pierced with a sword of sorrow,
Mary, torn with a cruel wound,
Mary, sorrowful even to death ,
Mary, bereft of all consolation,
Mary, submissive to the law of God,
Mary, standing by the Cross of Jesus,
Mary, Our Lady,
Mary, Our Queen,
Mary, Queen of glory ,
Mary, glory of the Church Triumphant,
Mary, Blessed Queen,
Mary, advocate of the Church Militant,
Mary, Queen of Mercy,
Mary, consoler of the Church Suffering,
Mary, exalted above the Angels,
Mary, crowned with twelve stars,
Mary, fair as the moon,
Mary, bright as the sun,
Mary, distinguished above all,
Mary, seated at the right hand of Jesus,
Mary, our hope,
Mary, our sweetness,
Mary, glory of Jerusalem ,
Mary, joy of Israel,
Mary, honor of our people,
Mary, Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,
Mary, Our Lady of the Assumption,
Mary, Our Lady of Loreto,
Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes,
Mary, Our Lady of Fatima,
Mary, Our Lady of Czestochowa,
Mary, Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal,
Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
Mary, Our Lady of the Angels,
Mary, Our Lady of Dolors,
Mary, Our Lady of Mercy,
Mary, Our Lady of the Rosary,
Mary, Our Lady of Victory ,
Mary, Our Lady of La Trappe,
Mary, Our Lady of Divine Providence,

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord Jesus.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord Jesus.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us, O Lord Jesus.
Son of Mary, hear us.
Son of Mary, graciously hear us.
V. I will declare thy name unto my brethren.
R. I will praise thee in the assembly of the faithful.

Let Us Pray. 

O Almighty God, Who beholdest Thy servants earnestly desirous
of placing themselves under the shadow of the name and protection
of the Most Holy Virgin Mary, vouchsafe, we beseech Thee,
that by her charitable intercession, we may be delivered from all
evil on earth, and may arrive at everlasting joys in Heaven,
through Jesus Christ Our Lord. R. Amen.

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