Holy Innocents (Feast)

The Feast of the Holy Innocents (0-5AD) recalls the massacre of all male children, two years old or under, who lived in Bethlehem and the surrounding region. They were killed on the orders of a furious King Herod the Great; he was determined to avoid the loss of his throne to a Newborn King, Jesus the Son of God.

Image depicting the Massacre of the Holy Innocents

Herod had heard from the three Magi (Wise Men) that a King was born in Judea, “Having seen his star in the east”. King Herod said to them, “Go and look carefully for the child. When you find him, inform me so that I can go and worship him as well”. His intentions were evil, he was planning to kill the baby Jesus. (Matthew 2:8)

The Magi continued their journey to Bethlehem and found the baby Jesus but, “After being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they went back by another route to their own country”. (Matthew 2:12)

The Feast of the Holy Innocents is the 28th of December.


Holy Innocents:

Enlighten our minds to an awareness and a renewed conviction that all human life is sacred because it is created in God’s image and likeness. (Extract from Prayer for Unborn Child – Catholic.org)

Glory be to the…


Immaculate Conception (Feast)

The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is set aside to commemorate the occasion when the Blessed Virgin Mary was conceived by St Anne, her mother.

Image of the Holy Family

The Blessed Virgin Mary was born free from original sin (“The deliberate sin of the first man was the cause of original sin” – St Augustine.)

More than 1800 years later, when the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to the 14-year-old, Bernadette Soubirous, at Lourdes in France, she told her, “I am the Immaculate Conception”.

The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is the 8th December.

We honour you, Mary, and thank you for your many great works.


Mary, Queen of Heaven:

I present myself before you, who are Queen of heaven and earth. From the lofty throne on which you sit, disdain not, I implore you, to cast your eyes on me, a poor sinner.(Extract from a prayer to Mary)

Related Links:

Prayers to: The Blessed Virgin Mary

Novenas to Our Lady of: Epiphany  FatimaGuadalupe, KnockLourdesMount CarmelPerpetual HelpSorrows


Presentation Of The Lord (Feast)

According to the law of Moses, mothers of firstborn boys remained in a process of purification for forty days after giving birth. If a daughter, the time period was 80 days.

Image of the Holy Family

When Mary’s 40 day period had passed, Mary and Joseph, in devout obedience to Jewish law, took Jesus to the temple in Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord – represented by the Temple priest.

Jewish custom also required that on the day of presentation, parents would make a sacrifice. Either, a lamb as a burnt offering and a dove or a young pigeon as a sin offering. If the family were poor and unable to afford a lamb, as in Mary and Joseph’s instance, then two doves or young pigeons were given.

Upon their arrival at the temple, Mary would have been met by the priest and sprinkled with the blood of her sacrifices (Lightfoot). She would then have presented the child Jesus to him.

The event was a very special milestone in the Holy Families life and was made even more memorable when they met Simeon and Anna. Simeon took Jesus in his arms and proudly exclaimed, “Sovereign Lord, permit your servant to depart in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation” while Anna “gave thanks to God and… spoke about the child to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem”. (Luke 2:29-30, 38)

The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord is the 2nd February.


Presentation of the Lord:

Give us a heart as beautiful, pure and spotless as yours.
A heart like yours, so full of love and humility.

May we be able to receive Jesus as the Bread of Life,
to love Him as you loved Him, to serve Him under the mistreated face of the poor. (Extract from prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary)

Glory be to the…


Presentation of Mary (Feast)

The Feast of the Presentation of Mary commemorates the occasion when St Joachim and St Ann, the Blessed Virgin Mary’s parents, took Mary to the Temple in Jerusalem. She was about three years old. Their visit was to thank God for the gift of their child, Mary, and consecrate her life to Him.

Image of St Anne with the Child Mary

Prior to the Blessed Virgin Mary’s birth, her mother was barren, but following a life of prayer and fasting, an Angel appeared to her saying, “The Lord has heard your prayer, and you shall conceive, and shall bring forth, and your seed (offspring) shall be spoken of in all the world”.

At the Temple, Mary’s proud parents introduced her to the chief priests. They blessed Mary saying, “O God most high, look upon this child, and bless her with the utmost blessing, which shall be for ever”. (St James’ Gospel)

The Feast of the Presentation of Mary is the 21st of November.


Mary, Queen of Heaven:

Give us a heart as beautiful, pure and spotless as yours.
A heart like yours, so full of love and humility.

May we be able to receive Jesus as the Bread of Life,
to love Him as you loved Him, to serve Him under the mistreated face of the poor. (Extract from prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary)

Glory be to the…

Related Links:

Prayers to: The Blessed Virgin Mary

Novenas to Our Lady of: Epiphany  FatimaGuadalupe, KnockLourdesMount CarmelPerpetual HelpSorrows


Dedication of St Peter & St Paul (Feast)

Basilica of St Peter, Rome.

In the fourth century, the Emperor Constantine the Great had two Basilicas built in Rome; the Basilica of St Peter and the Basilica of St Paul. The Basilica sites were believed to have been the actual burial tombs of St Peter and St Paul and during the previous centuries, pilgrims had made them places of prayer and worship.

Basilica of St Paul, Rome.

Although the basilicas have been extensively refurbished and extended over the centuries, they remain unique places of pilgrimage and prayer for the Christian faithful.

Today, Bishops are required to visit “the Tombs of the Apostles” every five years and report on the status of their Dioceses to the Vatican.


St Peter & St Paul:

O Holy St Peter and Paul, upon you, Almighty God has built His Church. Obtain for me I pray you: lively faith, firm hope, burning love and perseverance in the grace of God even unto death. (Extract from prayers to St Peter)

Glory be to the…


Dedication of St John Lateran Basilica (Feast)

The St John Lateran Basilica is the oldest Major Basilica in Rome and the oldest Church in the Western World. It was consecrated in 324 A.D. and is dedicated to “Christ the Saviour”.

Photograph of the front of St John Lateran Basilica, Rome.

St John Lateran Basilica is the Cathedral of the Bishop of Rome, the Pope, and ranks above all other Catholic Churches including St Peter’s Basilica. Although it has been reconstructed and added to following fires and periods of decline over the centuries, it remains a beautiful baroque style Church befitting of its status. There are six known papal tombs within the Basilica but there may be other additional unregistered papal remains.

The Feast Day of the Dedication of St John Lateran Basilica is the 9th November.


Christ Our Saviour:

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me. (Extract from Anima Christi)

Glory be to the…


All Saints (Solemnity)

The first day of November is known as All Saints Day or All Hallows Day (Hallowmas). It is celebrated by Christians across the world to commemorate those who have departed from this life and who are already enjoying the rewards and joys of Heaven.

Composite image of multiple famous saints.

As well as attending Mass or other Services on this day, many people place flowers and light candles on altars or in front of statues to commemorate known Church Saints. The celebrations naturally extend to the 2nd November, All Souls Day; although there are many documented Saints, there are also many more undocumented.

Throughout the two-day celebration our past family, friends, relatives and ancestors are at the heart of our constant prayers.

The Feast of All Saints is the 1st November.


All Holy Saints:

Father, all-powerful and ever-living God, today we rejoice in the holy men and women of every time and place. May their prayers bring us your forgiveness and love. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (Liturgy of Hours)

Glory be to the…


Our Lady of the Rosary

St Dominic kneeling at the feet of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Our Lady of the Rosary is a title given to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The origin of the Holy Rosary is often associated with St Dominic following a vision from Mary, encouraging him to recite and spread its use and message throughout the world.

The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary is also known as Our Lady of Victory, following a Christian naval battle in 1571 when an Ottoman fleet’s attempted invasion of Western Europe was defeated and because of it, Christianity remained; all attributed to the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Victory is the Patron Saint of many Churches and societies worldwide.

The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary is the 7th October.


Our Lady of the Rosary:

Pray for Us. O Most Pure Heart of Mary, full of goodness, show your love towards us. Let the flame of your heart, O Mary, descend on all people. We love you. (Extract from Immaculate Heart of Mary)

Related Links:

Prayers to: The Blessed Virgin Mary

Novenas to Our Lady of: Epiphany  FatimaGuadalupe, KnockLourdesMount CarmelPerpetual HelpSorrows

Glory be to the…


Guardian Angels (Feast)

It is said that even the pagans believed they had a Guardian Angel!

Image of Guardian Angel accompanying a children.

The belief that we all have a heavenly helper exists in some form is most religions and philosophies. Angels are extensively mentioned in both the Old and New Testament.

Our personal Guardian Angel is our gift from God to watch over and guide us; we are never alone – maybe they are our sixth sense!

Many Saints reported visions from Angels, sometimes in the presence of others such as the Blessed Virgin Mary. Our hopes and prayers are that one day, our Guardian Angel will accompany and comfort us on our final journey from this world to eternal happiness in Heaven.

The Feast of Guardian Angels is the 2nd of October.


Guardian Angel:

O Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits you here. Ever this day/night be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen.

Glory be to the…


Exaltation Of The Holy Cross (Feast)

Image of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre

On this Feast Day, we celebrate the Cross upon which Jesus died for our salvation. According to legend, the Cross used to crucify Jesus was discovered in 326 by Saint Helena during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was then built at the site of the discovery and a portion of the Cross placed inside.

The Feast Day of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross is the 14th September.


Loving Jesus:

Have mercy on us, forgive us our sins and save us from the tortures of hell.

Glory be to the…