August Liturgical Living
August Liturgical Living
Weeks of August 1 – August 8
- The month of August is dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Spend some time this month inviting Mary into your every day, whether that’s thinking of her when you do the dishes (how did she survive without a dishwasher?!) or saying a rosary before you go to sleep. If you haven’t already, think about joining the Million Rosary Movement, which aims to offer up one million rosaries before Mary’s birthday on September 8. As of this writing, we’re at a little under 324,000, so join in!
- August 1 is the Feast of St. Alphonsus Liguori. Widely known for his writings and for being the patron saint of confessors, take the first day of the month as a fresh start. Consider reaching a chapter or two (for free!) of The Glories of Mary or The Way of the Cross, which is still used during Lent in many parishes. Take yourself on a one day Lenten journey with a little spiritual reading and do an examination of conscience before bed; resolve to be better tomorrow.
- Begin the St. Rocco Novena Against Plagues on August 7. Rocco healed the sick by praying and making the sign of the cross over them, and is often invoked against epidemics. Pray for his intercession for an end to COVID-19.
- August 8 is the Feast of St. Dominic, who is widely credited with spreading devotion to our Blessed Mother and the Rosary. Ask for his help staying focused while you say a rosary today–and remember you don’t have to pray it all at once! I sometimes say one decade in the shower, one decade while doing dishes, out on a walk, etc.
Week of August 9 – August 15
- August 10 is the Feast of St. Lawrence, a martyr famous for being burned over a grill and exclaiming, “Turn me over, I’m done on this side.” Grill something in his honor and pray for his courage and fortitude to bless you in your spiritual battles today.
- August 11 is the Feast of St. Clare of Assisi, often known as Poor Clare. She’s commonly depicted as a beautiful follower of St. Francis of Assisi, but she was a generous and influential servant of God in her own right. She and her sisters were known for their silence, and a legend tells of her mounting the Blessed Sacrament on the wall when faced with invaders, who fled in fear. Take some quiet time for a Holy Hour today and ask for St. Clare’s intercession to help you surrender and trust in God.
- August 14 is the Feast of St. Maximilian Kolbe. A victim of the Holocaust, he gave his life so that a Polish Jew could live, a man with a family who needed him. But did you also know that he founded the Knights of Mary Immaculate? In modern times, who says only men can be knights? Let’s all be knights for Mary today. I’ve adopted a practice of saying a Hail Mary after every bad thing I read in my morning briefing newsletters. It makes for a few extra minutes to get through my daily news, but it immediately sends prayers to those who need them most, and what’s more knightly than that?!
- August 15 is the Feast of the Assumption. Call your grandparents or a special family member–we often forget that one of the best parts of the Assumption was Mary got to go home, finally united with her dearly departed St. Joseph and Jesus. Spend some time with your loved ones today in honor of her homecoming.
Week of August 16 – August 22
- On August 21, 1879, Our Lady of Knock (in Ireland) appeared alongside St. Joseph, Jesus, St. John the Baptist, and a lamb surrounded by angels. It is the only shrine in the world where the Lamb of God has appeared. Learn more about the apparition here and pray to Our Lady for healing from coronavirus.
- August 22 is the Feast of the Queenship of Mary, her coronation day after she was assumed. Pray the Glorious mysteries of the rosary (the fifth Glorious mystery is her coronation), and if you have a statue of Mary in your home, make her a little crown out of a special bracelet you have or other household materials. (Then maybe watch The Princess Diaries.)
Week of August 23 – August 29
- August 23 is the Feast of St. Rose of Lima, my confirmation saint! St. Rose performed many penances and revered the Blessed Sacrament. Buy some roses for your table today and spend a Holy Hour with St. Rose. Say an Act of Contrition for your sins and breathe in the scent of the flowers–roses were said to fall from the sky when she died.
- Two novena options this week, from a mother and son: you can either try the St. Monica novena, beginning on her feast day of August 28 and typically prayed for abuse victims (many of which have especially suffered during quarantine), or the St. Augustine novena, beginning on his feast day of August 29; he’s a patron of tired eyes, which I think we’re all experiencing in infinite Zoom-land.
Week of August 30 – September 5
- Begin the novena to Our Lady of Good Health on August 30th. Whether for victims of coronavirus, ailing family members or friends, or your own mental health, good health is a true privilege. Let’s entrust our intentions to Mary today.
- September 5 is the Feast of St. Mother Teresa. Wear white and blue to remember her today and learn more about her life. Too often reduced to a plethora of quotes (good quotes, don’t get me wrong!) too few of us actually are familiar with her life story. Learn a bit more about her work today, and then integrate one of her famous quotes as part of your new mission statement (learn more about making a mission statement here!)
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