St Anne and the Virgin Mary
St Anne and the Virgin Mary

Today is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in the Catholic Church, which dates back to the 7th century when Eastern churches began celebrating the conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. That is the origin of the feast, but the feast day as we know it today in the West dates back to around the 11th century.

The “immaculate conception” does not refer to the conception of Christ by the Holy Spirit but, instead, refers to Mary’s own immaculate conception in the womb of her mother, St Anne, which meant that Mary had been conceived free from the taint of original sin.

Read more… in my article from 2011.

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One thought on “The Feast of the Immaculate Conception, St Anne and Anne Boleyn”
  1. Unfortunately I was not well enough to celebrate today but will be celebrating the feast tomorrow. It is amazing it took the Papacy so long to catch up with what was a feast that had been honoured for a long time; even further back than the 11th century. In Ephesus, were our Lady spent her last years in the care of saint john this feast was celebrated as early as the fourth century and may be even older. There was a programme on EWTN recently that visited many places around the world connected with Mary and were all sorts of older feasts and cults honoured what was later confirmed as a doctrine of faith by the Holy See. It seems this was one of the most popular and widely honoured cults associated with Mary and with Saint Anne. Saint Anne was a saint that at one time was associated with safe childbirth and she is commonly believed to have taught Mary the scriptures. Statues today show Mary learning at her mother’s knee. I found the early article interesting that this was the theme of a tablau at the coronation; and can see where there are some religious symbols being used in ideology around Anne as the hope for the nation in that she is carrying a much awaited and longed for child. The name Mary in Hebrew means long awaited child. Henry had been waiting for a long time to have a son and a lot of hope was invested in Anne and her unborn child; which of course the couple believed to be a boy. I do not know if the significance of the tableau was lost on Anne of is she just enjoyed the pagenent and the day and the whole excitment meant that any symbols just went over her head: but the children preforming such a lovely play for her as she stopped to watch must have given her great delight.

    Happy Feast Day

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