Like St. Alphonsus, our founding father, the Redemptorists are always invited to encourage devotion to the Virgin Mary, according to the cultures of the time: “Consider the Blessed Virgin Mary as your model and help … encourage your veneration with zeal, especially through the liturgical worship, and celebrate their festivities with special fervor. Faithful to the Alphonsian tradition, all the congregation will honor this Blessed Virgin daily … “(Const. 32)
To speak of the Virgin Mary, is to speak with such tenderness of the merciful action of God towards humanity, so that we can all recognize its greatness from the humility of the one who serves it, not as a slave, but as that creature who accepts the Will of God and this allows his mercy to reach to all humanity, “Let it be done to me according to your word” (Luke 2: 26ff.).
Now, to speak of the theme of the Immaculate Conception, is to speak of a dogma of faith, for the Catholic Church in the world, and this is a truth of faith, something in which one cannot doubt, that has always been so, and that the Church asks that a truth be defined in Tradition and that this truth has been enlightened by God; the only one who can make known is the Roman Pontiff.
“The dogma of the Immaculate Conception means that Mary remained immune to original sin … By defining the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception as a dogma of faith, Pope Pius IX simply asserted that the doctrine is found in the place of revelation and that, therefore, it is necessary for faith. This was done through a papal declaration that entitled “Ineffable God” in 1854 (Jorge C., Handbook of Mariology, for today’s Catholics, p.34), Mary was conceived “full of grace “, in comparison to any another mortal “free of original sin, from its conception”, and why not say it, Mary is pure throughout her life; we are all called to imitate her, to live with fidelity the call to be saints, to choose not for the comfortable, but as her to be “servants”, of the one who will never abandon us.
It must be recognized that the merit of Mary as “Immaculate”, is the merits of Christ, who was to grow in an incorrupt body, free from all stain of sin, there is the question: How the son of God can be conceived in a creature with original sin ?, because in the case of Mary, it does not happen, since it was “preserved” – “free” of all stain, of all sin, and thus becomes an incorrupt tabernacle, where only God has had a dignified dwelling among creatures.
On this Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, all the Redemptorists in the world are called to give thanks to God, for this gift to the Church, to recognize in Mary, her mercy and compassion among us. St. Alphonsus vowed to defend “the Immaculate Conception”, even though this was not a dogma declared by the Church, between 1713, 1725 and 1749, which even in his book “the Preparation for Death” mentions it as follows: “To the immaculate and always Virgin Mary, full of grace, blessed among all the children of Adam, the dove, the lovebird, the beloved of God … “and writes on Mary, a unique book called “The Glories of Mary” . We Redemptorists have her as the official patron of the Congregation (EE. 05), and we are invited to continue trusting in her Perpetual Help, and that she is our sure bridge, towards happiness with God, to be faithful to the vocation to God. which has called us, invited to be not only messengers, but intermediaries of the smallness and humility in this world that wishes to see testimony of the faith, therefore, we must not stop praying to the mother of God, and ask her for the increase of vocations and their perseverance in our congregation.
Fr. José Luis Ramírez Díaz, CSsR
Vice Province of Peru, Sur