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News and Notes


Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

The solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, Thursday, Dec. 8, which commemorates the conception of the Virgin Mary in her mother’s womb, is a holy day of obligation, meaning that Catholics are required to attend Mass.

The dogma of the Immaculate Conception, proclaimed in 1854 by Pope Pius IX, said: “The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God and by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin.”

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops suggests that the faithful observe the feast by attending Mass and praying the Hail Mary before meals.