SATURDAY
August 5, 2000
volume 11, no. 131


LITURGY for Saturday, August 5th, 2000

Saturday, August 5, 2000

    Saturday August 5:
    Weekday in Ordinary Time and
    Feast of the Dedication of Saint Mary Major Basilica in Rome

    Green or White vestments

      First Reading: Jeremiah 26: 11-16
      Psalms: Psalm 69: 14-16, 30-31, 33-34
      Gospel Reading: Matthew 14: 1-12
Feast of the Dedication of Saint Mary Major Basilica in Rome
       Many believe that Saint Mary Major Basilica was derived from an apparition in which Our Lady appeared, designating a place where she desired a basilica in her honor be built in the early centuries. Legend has it that on the evening of August 5th somewhere around the year 358 in the midst of the hot Roman summer the site was miraculously outlined in snow the next morning when the citizens awoke. Thus she became known as "Our Lady of the Snows". There are conflicting reports as to the date. Some annals contend it was August 15th, which would later become the Feast of the Assumption. Regardless it was August and for it to snow during the most sizzling month of the year when most Romans abandon their city for the cooler mountains, was truly a miracle. Pope Saint Liberius realized this immediately and laid the foundations for the Basilica of Saint Mary Major. Pope Saint Sixtus III designated August 5th as the official date for commemorating this feast around the year 435. Above the portals of this Basilica are the words "Plebus Dei" which means "Dedicated to the People of God." From the seventh century on the Basilica was also known as "Blessed Mary at the Crib", because many believed that within this Basilica nestled in the narrow streets of Rome was the true manger from Bethlehem miraculously transported. This has never been proven and many believe it exists there mystically in the Tabernacle where her Divine Son resides Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Holy Eucharist. In 1586, another Sixtus, Pope Sixtus V entered this feast into the Roman Calendar.

August 5, 2000
volume 11, no. 131
DAILY LITURGY



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