In keeping with the Roman Catholic custom of May Crowning, Fr. Pio Jackson helps the residents celebrate the tradition annually at The Sarah Community. For centuries, the month of May has been designated for rituals that acknowledge the unique role of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Pope Pius XII proclaimed the “Queenship of Mary” In his encyclical Ad Caeli Reginam in 1954, which helped to promote this devotion in modern times. This year, the rite was conducted in the Marion Chapel during Mass, which is celebrated regularly using the approved rite that is promoted by the Congregation for Divine Worship.
Fr. Pio says that “the Queenship of Mary has a direct relationship to the Kingship of Christ, although she is unhesitatingly subordinate to it, never equal to it.” He reminds listeners that crowning Mary “has nothing to do with earthly royalty or sovereignty” but instead recognizes that she is a model of faith, a most perfect disciple of Christ, and after Christ she is the most central figure in the Communion of saints. Pope Paul VI stressed that we appreciate Mary “based upon what we find in Scripture. For example, the Mary we find in the Gospels is a woman who is willing to make decisions that will have an impact on the direction of the world”.
This year, a Statue of Mary was adorned with a crown of flowers in a ceremony that brought back memories of similar services in the past. Many of the Sisters recalled celebrating the Queenship of Mary in their convents, while other residents may have experienced this in parish life. This is just one of the many ways that residents of the Roman Catholic faith can continue to grow in their spirituality while living at The Sarah Community.