Dedication of the Basilica of St Mary MajorEighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Dedication of the Basilica of St. Mary Major (Our Lady of the Snows), Rome in 435 on the Esquiline Hill.
Today the Church celebrates the Dedication of the Basilica of St. Mary Major. The Basilica is the first church in Rome dedicated to Mary the Mother of God. Founded by Pope Liberius in the 4th century, it was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin by Pope St. Sixtus III around 435.
It is also called Santa Maria ad Nives (St. Mary of the Snow) because a miraculous snow fell upon the area in summer in the exact outline of the building. Around the same time, a patrician named John had a vision of the Virgin requesting the building of the church, and he donated the money to build it. On some calendars, this day is celebrated as Our Lady of the Snows.
The Holy Manger of Bethlehem is on display in a large subterranean chapel in the church. Saints Jerome and Paula devoutly touched this presumed relic when it was still in Bethlehem.
1. The month of August is dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Today is a special day to honor Mary the Mother of God. Pray that she will intercede for your intentions and those of your loved ones.
2. Pray a prayer of consecration, or dedication, to Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. As in her Magnificat, she refers all to the Lord. Ask her to hold you in her Heart in union with the Heart of her Son, her and our Lord Jesus Christ.”