Friday, August 22, 2008

Feast Day: Queenship of Mary

Is this not the most beautiful tapestry? This is one of four tapestries which was made for the Abbey of St. Walburga, a Benedictine Abbey nestled in north-central Colorado (just about into Wyoming). These tapestries were hand-made (!) in Germany by a Benedictine sister specifically for the Benedictines in Colorado -- when they built their new Abbey in the late 1990s, the design of the Chapel included prominent spots for these gorgeous tapestries.

This depicts the Risen Christ crowning his mother. The Latin translates as "forever singing allelulia".

Today, the Catholic Church celebrates the Queenship of Mary -- one week after we celebrate her Assumption into Heaven, we celebrate that Jesus than crowned her as Queen of Heaven and Earth. Mary... "mother of Eternal Glory" ... "temple of the Divinity" ... "queen of life" is crowned by her Son to reign over us all. She intercedes for us with God.

Pope Pius XII promulgated the encyclical AD CAELI REGINAM in 1954 (four years after his encyclical when the Church formally accepted the dogma of Mary's Assumption), an encyclical which fully explains the Church's teachings on the Queenship of Mary and her special place as the mother of God.

The collect for today:

Father, you have given us the mother of your Son to be our queen and mother.
With the support of her prayers may we come to share the glory of your children
in the kingdom of heaven. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Here are the Latin words for ancient* prayer, "Hail Holy Queen":

Salve Regina, mater misericordiae: vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad
te clamamus exsules filii Hevae. Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes in hac lacrimarum valle. Eia, ergo, advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis post hoc exsilium ostende.

O clemens, O pia, O dulcis Virgo Maria. Amen.

V. Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genetrix.
R. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

[* ... the Salve Regina was used as a processional chant at Cluny by 1135. Around 1218 the Cistercians adopted it as a daily processional chant and in 1251 as an ending to Compline. Both the Dominicans and the Franciscans also adopted it around this same time and the Carmelites used it for a while in place of the last Gospel at Mass. Gregory IX (1227-1241) ordered it to be chanted after Compline on Fridays. From the 14th century down to today it has been a part of Compline for the Latin Rite. Traditionally this antiphon is recited at Compline from Trinity Sunday until Advent.]
Here's what we made for dessert, Queen of Heaven Pie, (an original recipe that allowed us to have a great dessert without heating up the kitchen!).
Using chocolate cookie crust, icecream, blueberries, blueberry jello, whipped topping and sprinkles ...We came up with Queen of Heaven Pie -- chocolate cookie crust base, blueberries sprinkled over the bottom, vanilla ice cream spread over the blueberries. We then placed chocolate wafer cookies around the rim (to keep the good stuff in -- and after all, Mary, being perfect would definitely have LOVED chocolate!), then blueberry jello (half the 4 oz. recipe) layered over the ice-cream covered blueberries, blueberry jello (the other half) mixed with the whipped topping and spread over all, then the last of the whipped topping and star sprinkles to top it off.

Definitely a heavenly dessert that was enjoyed by all!

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