06 Dec The Feast of the Immaculate Conception
Observed by many Christian communities (predominantly Catholics and many Anglicans) all over the world on the 8th of December, the Feast of Immaculate Conception is a holy day in the Christian calendar. On this ‘day of obligation’, special services (masses) are held in churches around the world.
About the Feast of the Immaculate Conception
According to the Catholic Church’s teachings, the Immaculate Conception was the Virgin Mary’s conception in her mother’s (Saint Anne) womb free of original sin on account of her future son Jesus Christ’s foreseen merits. The church teaches that while Mary was indeed conceived by regular biological means, she was kept ‘immaculate’ by God acting upon her soul at the time she was conceived.
The Feast of the Immaculate Conception was surrounded by theological controversy for centuries. Many theologians (including St Thomas Aquinas) throughout Christian history questioned the belief that Mary was conceived free of original sin (the Immaculate Conception). The debate continued until the 8th of December 1854, when Pope Pius IX declared the Immaculate Conception to be one of the Catholic Church’s essential dogmas in the document known as the Ineffabilis Deus. Since this day, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception has been celebrating the belief that the Virgin Mary was born free of sin and that she was chosen by God to be the mother of Jesus.
The Immaculate Conception has been depicted in many forms of artwork, including statues and paintings. Usually showing the young woman Mary clad in white and blue garments, these paintings often show her standing on raised areas or on hills. In many paintings, she is shown with a halo (often consisting of stars) and some pieces of art also feature golden lights and/or clouds; cherubs, roses and/or lilies. One well-known statue associated with Mary’s Immaculate Conception is the statue known as Santa Marian Kamalen (Our Lady of Camarin), which was discovered on the Merizo shores, Guam, over 300 years ago.
The Feast of Immaculate Conception is observed by attending special masses (services) held on/around the 8th of December. In some countries, including, for instance, East Timor, Guam and Italy; Malta, Monaco and Spain, this day is a public holiday.
According to Luke 1:30-33, an angel speaking to Mary foretold the birth of Jesus and his future greatness. You, too can learn about your child’s true potential with a Child Life Report. Order your child’s birth chard/child life report here.