Bishop Douglas J. Lucia celebrated a May Crowning and renewed the Syracuse Diocese’s consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary May 1. (Sun photo | Chuck Wainwright)
By Katherine Long | Editor
A traditional May devotion took on special significance this afternoon as Bishop Douglas J. Lucia celebrated a May Crowning and renewed the Syracuse Diocese’s consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
“In this difficult time we turn to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church and Queen of Peace, to ask that she intercede with her son for all those who are affected in any way by this pandemic,” the bishop said as the livestreamed celebration began in the prayer park at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.
Bishop Lucia was joined by lector Sullivan Moles, a student at Blessed Sacrament School in Syracuse, and Cecilia Stahl, a parishioner of Divine Mercy Parish in Central Square, who would crown Mary.
In his homily, the bishop recalled the words spoken by Jesus to the beloved disciple in the Gospel reading: “Behold, your mother.”
“Our Mother Mary — whom as we just heard in the Gospel Jesus gave to us as a special gift, a special gift to be there for us, to be there for us especially as we face in our own lives our crosses — in a particular way we know it is she who joins us in prayer,” he said.
The day’s celebration was “so special because it is once again reminding us that we do not walk this way alone,” Bishop Lucia said.
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you,” the angel told Mary at the Annunciation. “That same power overshadows you and I today; that same power is available to us,” Bishop Lucia said.
The angel’s affirmation that “nothing will be impossible for God” is important for the faithful to remember today, the bishop continued. “So even though we have our challenges, we can move forward in confidence, in faith, knowing that God can use this moment, can use these events to help us as Church to grow and to grow as God’s children.”
The bishop urged the faithful to dedicate themselves to a month of prayer, particularly the Rosary. Throughout the month, Bishop Lucia will lead weekly recitation of and a brief catechesis on the Rosary; join him via livestream at youtube.com/syrdio at 7 p.m. on May 7, 14, 21, and 28. Find a guide to praying the Rosary at syrdio.org.
“This month of May, through prayer let us pray that we will magnify the Lord even more in the days and weeks, months and years ahead,” the bishop said.
Bishop Lucia offered a prayer of thanksgiving for the Blessed Virgin Mary and blessed a crown of blue and white flowers. Dressed in white, Cecilia ascended a ladder and placed the crown on the statue of Mary at the heart of the prayer park.
Kneeling before the crowned statue, the bishop led prayer of a decade of the Rosary, meditating on the First Luminous Mystery: the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan.
He then renewed the consecration of the Diocese of Syracuse to the Blessed Virgin Mary, praying:
Let us now entrust our country and ourselves
once again to the Virgin Mary’s care:
Most Holy Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church,
you are the fairest fruit of God’s redeeming love;
you sing of the Father’s mercy
and accompany us with a mother’s love.
In this time of pandemic we come to you,
our sign of sure hope and comfort.
Today we renew the act of consecration
and entrustment carried out by those
who have gone before us.
With the love of a Mother and Handmaid,
embrace this diocese which we entrust and consecrate once again to you,
together with ourselves and our families.
In a special way we commend to you
those particularly in need of your maternal care.
Mary, Health of the Sick,
sign of health, of healing,
and of divine hope for the sick,
we entrust to you all who are infected
with the coronavirus.
Mary, Mother of Consolation,
who console with a mother’s love
all who turn to you,
we entrust to you all those who have
lost loved ones in the pandemic.
Mary, Help of Christians,
who come to our rescue in every trial,
we entrust to your loving protection all caregivers.
Mary, Queen and Mother of Mercy,
who embrace all those who call upon
your help in their distress,
we entrust to you all who are suffering
in any way from the pandemic.
Mary, Seat of Wisdom,
who were so wonderfully filled
with the light of truth,
we entrust to you all who are working
to find a cure to this pandemic.
Mary, Mother of Good Counsel,
who gave yourself wholeheartedly to God’s
plan for the renewing of all things in Christ,
we entrust to you all leaders and policymakers.
Accept with the benevolence of a Mother
the act of consecration that we make
today with confidence,
and help us to be your Son’s instruments
for the healing and salvation of our country
and the world.
Mary, Mother of the Church,
you are enthroned as queen
at your Son’s right hand:
we ask your intercession
for the needs of our country,
that every desire for good may be
blessed and strengthened,
that faith may be revived and nourished,
hope sustained and enlightened,
charity awakened and animated;
guide us, we pray, along the path of holiness.
Mary our Mother,
bring everyone under your protection
and entrust everyone to your beloved Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord.
Watch video from the crowning and reconsecration below, courtesy Syracuse Catholic Television: