The dogma of the Immaculate Conception

St. Anne with Mary, the daughter immaculately conceived in her womb, with the child Jesus. c. 1510; oil on wood; Musée du Louvre, Paris: click on image for larger version, detail

Here is the text of the document by which Pope Pius IX defined and declared the dogma of the Immaculate Conception in 1854.

This poem says it all: briefly, but beautifully...

The Immaculate Conception

A dewdrop of the darkness born,
Wherein no shadow lies;
The blossom of a barren thorn,
Whereof no petal dies;
A rainbow beauty passion-free,
Wherewith was veiled Divinity.

- John Bannister Tabb



  1. Father, We teach that Mary was conceived without sin. Her life therefore not one lived with the struggle of temptation. How then did Mary have freedom (which God always respects) when the Angel asked her to be the Mother of God?

  2. That Mary was conceived and born without inheriting sin from our first parents does not mean that she was without free will and the capacity to distinguish and choose between good and evil.

  3. I have always struggled with the temptations of Christ. Since he was God, I didn't think it possible that he could sin. Since he was human, it was possible that he could be tempted. Still puzzles me.



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and PRAY before you think!