While the month of April can struggle to warm up from the slight chill that occupies the early weeks of spring, nothing says “spring has arrived” more powerfully than the Crowning of Mary as our calendar turns to May.
The Crowning of the Virgin Mary is a tradition where Catholics in every part of the world celebrate the Queen of Heaven. And while some may see this custom as out dated, I have come to appreciate this event as a custom that proudly straddles the line between tradition and the charism of our growing faith. As Christian believers, the May Crowning offers us a fitting occasion in which to honor Mary with glorious praise.
Two Fridays ago, our school community celebrated the special presence of the Blessed Mother with a moving tribute of faith, love and veneration to Mary. It is important to share that after witnessing this wonderful event for the first time, the May Crowning event at St. Agnes is unlike any other. Our ceremony began outside as the entire student body processed around the campus together reciting the Holy Rosary. Then after praying the Rosary together, we proceeded into the church for our weekly mass. And during our celebration, students in grades 2 and 8 each played a part in honoring the Blessed mother with Amara Njoku ’18 serving as the crowner of Mary our Queen.
As with most events, they require great leadership. To this point, I would like to thank my colleagues Liz Ehrman, Elaine Liberto, Dan Baker and Fr. Foppiano for all they offered in making this event such a special blessed occasion.
As a community of faith, we are invited during the Month of May to celebrate the joyous and warm embrace of the Blessed Mother Mary and extend our gratitude to her for bringing us her Son. For these reasons and many more, we crown Mary on our Catholic version of Mother's Day. And as our students sought the perfect flower to honor Mary at our May Crowning, they also likely sought out the perfect bouquet that will present to their earthly Mothers and Grandmothers this weekend on Mother’s Day.
So some may ask, are May Crowning’s out dated? Quite the contrary. Customs like honoring the Blessed Mother is a fashionable tradition that helps nourish the charism of one’s growing faith. Thus, fittingly we proclaim: “Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum”. Or as we translate from Latin to English: “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.”
Yes, May Crownings still occur and remain vital to who we are as a faith community!
Happy Mother’s Day to all!!