May is the Month of Mary

The month of May is dedicated to The Blessed Virgin Mary.       The first 20 days fall within the liturgical season of Easter, which is represented by the liturgical colour white — the colour of light, a symbol of joy, purity and innocence (absolute or restored).            

The remainder of the month (beginning the Monday after Pentecost) is in Ordinary Time which is represented by the liturgical colour green.         

This symbol of hope is the colour of the sprouting seed and arouses in the faithful the hope of reaping the eternal harvest of heaven, especially the hope of a glorious resurrection.

 

"The month of May, with its profusion of blooms was adopted by the Church in the eighteenth century as a celebration of the flowering of Mary's maidenly  spirituality. With its origins in Isaiah's prophecy of the Virgin birth of the Messiah,  the flower symbolism of Mary was extended by the Church Fathers, and in the liturgy."

"In the medieval period, the rose was adopted as the flower symbol of the  Virgin Birth, as expressed in Dante's phrase, 'The Rose wherein the Divine Word was made flesh,' and depicted in the central rose windows of the great gothic cathedrals.

Also, in the medieval period, when monasteries were the centres of horticultural and agricultural knowledge, and with the spread of the Franciscan love of   nature, the actual flowers themselves, of the fields, waysides and gardens, came to be seen as symbols of Mary…" – John S. Stokes

Many churches have a crowning ceremony to welcome in  May as the Month of Mary. 

May Crowning is a traditional Roman Catholic ritual held during the month of May.

There is usually a procession  at  the  close of which  a statue of the Blessed Virgin is crowned with a garland or crown of flowers honouring Mary as “the Queen of May.” There is a special honour attached to being chosen to crown the statue.

Bring Flowers of the Rarest

Bring flow'rs of the fairest,
Bring flow'rs of the rarest,
From garden and woodland
And hillside and vale;
Our full hearts are swelling,
Our Glad voices telling
The praise of the loveliest
Rose of the vale.

O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.

Find out about the appearance of Mary in Lourdes   France.

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