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Catholic Culture Liturgical Year

As the earth cycles annually through its seasons, just so the Church celebrates with quiet, deliberate rhythm the seasons of the liturgical year – always the same, yet ever new and renewing.
  • Aug. 22 Memorial of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Memorial
    The faithful, under the guidance of an unerring Catholic instinct, have ever recognized the queenly dignity of the Mother of "The King of kings and Lord of lords": the Fathers, the Doctors of the Church, Popes, down through the centuries, have given authoritative expression to this truth and the crowning testimony to this common belief is to be found clearly expressed in the wonders of art and in the profound teaching of the liturgy. In their turn theologians have shown the fitting nature of this title of Queen as applied to the Mother of God, since she was so closely associated with the redemptive work of her Son and is the Mediatrix of all graces. Pius XII, by his encyclical letter of October 11, 1954, granted the unanimous desire of the faithful and their pastors and instituted the feast of the Queenship of Mary, giving sanction thus to a devotion that was already paid by the faithful throughout the world to the sovereign Mother of heaven and earth.

  • Aug. 21 Memorial of St. Pius X, pope, Sunday
    Joseph Sarto was born in humble circumstances at Riese, a small village in Venetia, on June 2, 1835. He was successively curate, parish priest, bishop of Mantua, Patriarch of Venice -- offices to which his keen intelligence, hard work and great piety caused him to be quickly promoted. He was elected Pope on August 4, 1903, and took the name of Pius X. As chief pastor of the Church he displayed untiring self-sacrifice and great energy; he was an intrepid defender of the purity of Christian doctrine. He realized to the full the value of the liturgy as the prayer of the Church and the solid basis that it furnishes for the devotion of Christian people; he worked for the restoration of the worship of the Church, especially plainchant, so that Christian people, as he put it, might find beauty in their public prayer. He spared no effort to propagate the practice, so great an aid to holiness, of early, frequent and daily communion. He died August 20, 1914 and was canonized on May 29, 1954.

  • Aug. 20 Twentieth Sunday of Ordinary Time, Sunday
    But the woman came and did him homage, saying, "Lord, help me." He said in reply, "It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs." She said, "Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters." Then Jesus said to her in reply, "O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish." And her daughter was healed from that hour (Matt 15:25-28).

  • Aug. 19 Optional Memorial of St. John Eudes, priest, Opt. Mem.
    St. John Eudes (1601-1680) was born in Ri and died in Caen, France. Despite the prevailing rigors of Jansenism, he received First Communion when only a child. He studied in Paris and was ordained a priest in 1625. He soon became an outstanding missionary among his plague-stricken countrymen, living an irreproachable life and devoting all his energies to the cause of Christ. In 1643 he founded the Society of Jesus and Mary (Eudists) to preach missions to the people, direct seminaries, and conduct retreats for the clergy. He was a great opponent of the Jansenistic heresy, and always showed an unchanging devotion to the Holy See.

  • Aug. 18 Friday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time, Weekday
    According to the 1962 Missal of St. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Agapitus, a martyr of Palestrina, not far from Rome. His cult, which is very ancient, was particularly popular in the eternal city where Felix III (492) caused a church to be built in his honor. Ancient inscriptions show clearly the great confidence placed in the intercession of this martyr. It is also the feast of St. Helena, empress and mother of Constantine the Great. She discovered the True Cross in a rock-cistern near Mt. Calvary.

  • Aug. 17 Thursday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time, Weekday
    According to the 1962 Missal of St. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Hyacinth, a canon of Krakow, who joined the Dominican Order in Rome during the lifetime of the founder, in about the year 1217. He returned to Krakow with the first band of Dominican missionaries. The newcomers spread over all the northern countries into Russia, the Balkans, Prussia and Lithuania. St. Hyacinth preached the crusade against the Prussians. He died on the feast of the Assumption, 1257.

  • Aug. 16 Optional Memorial of St. Stephen of Hungary, Opt. Mem.
    Vaik, son of Geza, Duke of Hungary, was baptized about 985 by St. Adalbert of Prague who gave him the name of Stephen. He was chosen by God to bring his people to the Christian faith. With the assistance of monks from Burgundy he established bishoprics, founded several monasteries and re-organized the whole life of the country. Pope Silvester II offered him the privilege of being crowned king and the ceremony took place on December 25, 1000. His great zeal for the spread of the Catholic faith earned him the title of apostolic king and apostle of Hungary. He died on August 15, 1038, the feast of the Assumption of our Lady, to whom he had consecrated his kingdom.

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