The Catholic Church dedicates the month of August to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The Immaculate Heart is often venerated together with the Sacred Heart of Jesus (the devotion we celebrate in June), and with good reason. Just as the Sacred Heart represents Christ’s love for mankind, the Immaculate Heart represents the desire of the Blessed Virgin to bring all people to her Son.
There is no better example of the Christian life than that offered by Mary. Through the following prayers, which help to deepen our devotion to her Immaculate Heart, we can join the Mother of God in drawing closer to Christ.
The month of September is dedicated to the Seven Sorrows of Mary. Devotion to the sorrows of the Virgin Mary dates from the twelfth century, when it made its appearance in monastic circles under the influence of St. Anselm and St. Bernard. The Cistercians and then the Servites undertook to propagate it. It became widespread in the fourteenth and especially the fifteenth centuries, particularly in the Rhineland and Flanders, where Confraternities of the Sorrowful Mother sprang up. It was in this context that the first liturgical formularies in her honor were composed. A provincial council of Mainz in 1423 made use of these in establishing a “Feast of the Sorrows of Mary” in reparation for Hussite profanations of her images.