Mother Mary, protectress of the United States – July 2 and 4

July 2nd is the feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Traditional Catholic Church. Independence day should have been July 2nd as Independence was voted in on that day. John Adams, our second president, even remarked that July 2nd would go down in history and would be marked with festivities and fireworks. However, although the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th was chosen as the country’s birthday, it is i interesting and comforting to note that Mary had her hand in the declaration of the United States as an independent country from the very beginning.

In fact, Mary’s mantle over the United States continues to be confirmed throughout US history. In 1792, Bishop John Carroll of Maryland made the first consecration to Mary under the title of the Immaculate Conception. In 1846, US Bishops at the Sixth Provincial Council in Baltimore, Maryland, reaffirmed the choice of Mary as the patroness of The United States of America under the title of The Immaculate Conception. Later on, on November 19, 1959, Cardinal O’Boyle of Washington D.C. consecrated America to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Furthermore,, on November 11, 2006, the Bishops, gathering at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception at noon, again consecrated our country to the Blessed Mother under the title of The Immaculate Conception. Finally, in light of the COVID 19 pandemic, on May 1st 2020, Archbishop Jose H Gomez effected a reconsecration to Our Lady for both Canada and the US.

Finally, for me personally and maybe for others, the Statue of Liberty, standing in the harbor of New York City, is highly representative of Mary standing guard at the portal of our nation. Even the inscription of the poem by Emma Lazarus is quintessential Mary:

The New Colossus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

Mother Mary of Exiles, pray for us!