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The Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary

September 12

The honored name of the Virgin Mary, which is said to mean “star of the sea,” is most fitting for the Virgin Mother. She may well be compared to a star; for, as a star beams forth its rays without any diminution of its own luster, so too the Virgin gave birth to a Son with no loss to Her virginity. The departing rays do not lessen the star’s brightness, nor Mary’s Son Her inviolate maidenhood. She is, therefore, that noble star risen from Jacob and raised by nature above this great and wide sea. She shines with merits, She enlightens with Her example. You, all you who are cast about upon the sea of temporalities in storms and tempests more than you walk on solid land, do not turn your eyes away from the brightness of this star.

Think of Mary, call upon Mary, so that you may experience for yourself how fittingly it was said, “And the Virgin’s name was Mary.” — Pope Innocent XI ordered the feast of this most holy name, which had already been honored with a special rite in some parts of the Christian world, to be celebrated each year by the universal Church as a perpetual memorial of the great blessing of that signal victory won at Vienna in Austria over the cruel Turkish tyrant who had been grinding down the Christian people.



Taken from The Hours of the Divine Office in English and Latin, Vol. III: August to Advent (Collegeville, Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1963), pp. 1510-1511.

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