As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odour,
and my flowers are the fruit of honour and riches.
I am the mother of fair love,
and of fear,
and of knowledge,
and of holy hope.
In me is all grace of the way and of the truth,
in me is all hope of life and of virtue.
Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits;
for my spirit is sweet above honey,
and my ineritance above honey and thehoney-comb.
My memory is unto everlasting generations.
They that eat me, shall yet hunger; and they that drink me, shall yet thirst.
He that hearkeneth to me shall not be confounded,
and they that work by me shall not sin.
They that explain me shall have life everlasting.
~Ecclesiasticus 25: 23-31
In the midst of the second world war Pope Pius XII put the whole world under the special protection of our Saviour's Mother by consecrating it to her Immaculate Heart, and in 1944 he decreed that in future the whole Church should celebrate the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary on August 22, octave day of the Assumption. This is not a new devotion. In the 17th century, St. john Eudes preached it together with that of the Sacred Heart; in the 19th century, Pius VII and Pius IX allowed several churches to celebrate a feast of the Pure Heart of Mary, fixed first on the Sunday in the octave of the Assumption, and later on the Saturday following the feast of the Sacred Heart.
Pius XII instituted today's feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the whole Church, so as to obtain by her intercession "peace among nations, freedom for the Church, the conversion of sinners, te love of purity and the practice of virtue." (Decree of May 4, 1944)
~ from the St. Andrew Daily Missal by Dom Gaspar Lefebvre, O.S.B., imprimatur 1953
Almighty and everlasting God, who in the heart of the blessed Virgin Mary didst prepare a dwelling worthy of the Holy Ghost; grant in Thy mercy, that we who with devout minds celebrate the festival of that immaculate heart, may be able to live according to Thine own heart. Through Our Lord... in the unity of the same Holy Ghost. Amen.
~ from the Collect from the Mass of the day
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