December 8 -- The Immaculate Conception of Our Lady
Our Lady was conceived without original sin. At the very moment of Mary's conception in the womb of St. Anne, God filled Mary full of grace and preserved her from any stain of sin. This act of God filled her soul with immeasurable graces through which she had the highest notion of the sanctity of God and the necessity of His glorification.
Therefore, she had a profound horror of evil along with an intransigence against it. For this reason, she bears the title "terribilis ut castrorum acies ordinata", terrible as
an army set in battle array.
That is why Our Lady is depicted in imagery (statues or paintings) crushing the head of the devil because it is she who smashes all heresies. The feast of the Immaculate Conception celebrates Our Lady's purity along with her intransigence and her combativeness.
What is Our Lady's intransigence? Our Lady has a
profound understanding of what is good and what is evil. Her love of this good naturally engenders a hatred for its opposite, evil.
This hatred is proportionate to the magnitude of her love of the good. This love of good is so complete that everything that is evil or even partly evil is abhorrent. This is intolerance or intransigence naturally leads to combativeness. A
combativeness whereby one makes the decision that there is no rest until evil is destroyed entirely.
We ask Our Lady for the grace of great love of God and a
deep understanding of His Glory. With this grace, we will fight the enemies of Holy Mother Church with purity, intransigence and combativeness. What better way to emulate Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception!