Tuesday, December 8, 2009
The Feast of the Immaculate Conception
Today is the celebration of the Immaculate Conception of Mary (and a Holy Day of Obligation to attend Mass for Roman Catholics). Although the concept of the Immaculate Conception of Mary is a very old tradition (St Augustine spoke of it), it was not until the 19th century that the Pope Pius IX declared it a dogma of the church.
What is the Immaculate Conception? For Catholics, it means that Mary was conceived without original sin. I have heard many people say "How can that be?" or "How did it happen?".
I prefer to take the approach of our Eastern Catholic tradition where having to understand the details of this mystery is a futile exercise. I like the sound of mystery; something that cannot be completely understood, but feels right in your heart.