DAILY CATHOLIC     FRI-SAT-SUN     May 8-10, 1998     vol. 9, no. 90


To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO
INTRODUCTION      "Getting to the Heart of the Matter" is what Sister Mary Lucy Astuto pinpoints in every issue when she takes a common sense approach to living our faith with her practical columns. In this issue she brings into focus the special time of May and this Sunday which is Mother's Day and how we can honor our Heavenly Mother as she takes us on a nostalgic journey to the "old days" in her column "ON THIS DAY, O BEAUTIFUL MOTHER".

     Her column, along with columns by Father John Hampsch, C.M.F. and Father Stephen Valenta, OFM Conv., provide effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www.heartofmaryministry.com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy@aol.com by e-mail.


          Did you live in the "old" days when your local parish or parish school held a May Crowning every May? Wasnít it wonderful?

          We sang those wonderful Marian hymns like: Bring Flowers of the Rarest; "Mother Dearest, Mother Fairest;" and "On This Day, O Beautiful Mother." What beautiful hymns those were, and how our hearts burst with love for Our Lady! How happy we were to call her "Mother" and to be able to honor her specially during this month of May by crowning her Queen - "Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May!"

          My memories of the May Crownings "of old" cannot be separated from my memories of taking an active part in the May Crownings. In 6th grade I was elected by my class to be a May Queen attendant. In 7th grade I was again elected to be the May Queenís attendant. Then as an eighth grader I was elected the May Queen who crowned the beautiful statue of Our Lady in St. Peterís Church in Omaha, Nebraska.

          My active participation did not stop there. As a senior in high school (Mercy High in Omaha, an all girlís school), I was elected by the total student body (about 700 students) to be May Queen, to crown the beautiful statue of Our Lady that was present on the high school campus.

          Those are some happy and blessed memories of my youth. I didnít deserve those honors. But I must confess that from the time I was knee-high to a grasshopper, I had great love for Our Blessed Mother and maybe it showed amidst my classmates without my realizing it.

          Then after Vatican II (not because of it), many schools and parishes seemed to let that beautiful devotion to Our Lady die out. That made me sad. I considered it one more achievement of the evil one to put Our Blessed Mother in the "back seat" and out of sight.

          But the May Crowning ceremonies may be on the way back, even if a bit.

          On Mother Ďs Day, I am going to be crowning Our Lady again. I wonít be in Church for the ceremony or on a school campus. Actually, the only other live human being to witness the crowning will be my earthly mother who will be 91 next week.

          I will crown Our Blessed Mother right here at home. My (earthly) mother and I will sing those "old" Marian songs we used to sing and then both my mother and I will lay a crown of flowers on Our Ladyís statue that we have right here.

          The angels, the saints, and God will see what we do and the love with which we do it, and the desire in our hearts that this precious display of love and honor for Our Lady be revived in our Church in this country.

          I believe it will some day. I canít wait! I will weep tears of joy when that happens again.

          Why donít you do the same this Sunday? Itís Motherís Day! If we honor His Mother, He will bless us.

          O Beautiful Mother, "we crown you with blossoms today. Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May!"

          And to all those earthly mothers out there, I wish you also a very Happy Mother's Day. God bless you.

May 8-10, 1998       volume 9, no. 90


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