Loreto feast is universal

Angels carry the Holy House

The Feast of Our Lady of Loreto 10 December now appears in the universal calendar.

The announcement by Pope Francis was made last month with the view that it may help us during Advent to think about the Annunciation.

The feast marks the day in 1294 that the Holy House from Nazareth arrived at Loreto in Italy.

The little building is the front entrance of the Virgin Mary’s house in Nazareth which survives there within the Basilica of the Annunciation. 

It is said that the section in Loreto is where the angel appeared to the Virgin Mary to tell her that she was with child. That was on the day we call the Annunciation and keep, nine months before Christmas, on 25 March each year.

The house was moved from the Holy Land to Italy by the Angeli family which has given rise to the tradition that it was carried by angels rather than dismantled and placed on a ship.

Artists have long provided some lovely images of angels carrying the Holy House.

Whilst we may be in the age of fast communication only a few printed calendars feature Our Lady of Loreto on Tuesday 10 December.

The new Latin texts for the feast have been published in Rome but the  official English translation of the new prayers and readings will not be available until next year.

Even then there will be 2020 calendars which have already been printed without mentioning Loreto.

The feast is an optional memorial so it will appear in calendars whilst being observed by choice in some places. It will take time to catch on.

Churches dedicated to Our Lady of Loreto are found in Kew, near Kew Gardens, and in Musselburgh near Edinburgh.

Litany of Loreto
The Litany of Loreto to the Blessed Virgin Mary sung at Loreto and elsewhere dates from before 1587. Cardinal Newman’s writings include meditations based on the titles of Our Lady found in the Litany.

Lord, have mercy on us. Christ have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ hear us
Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, Pray for us.
Holy Mother of God, Pray for us.
Holy Virgin of Virgins, Pray for us.
Mother of Christ, Pray for us.
Mother of the Church, Pray for us.
Mother of Divine Grace, Pray for us.
Mother most pure, Pray for us.
Mother most chaste, Pray for us.
Mother inviolate, Pray for us.
Mother undefiled, Pray for us.
Mother most amiable, Pray for us.
Mother most admirable, Pray for us.
Mother of Good Counsel, Pray for us.
Mother of our Creator, Pray for us.
Mother of our Saviour, Pray for us.
Mother of mercy, Pray for us.
Virgin most prudent, Pray for us.
Virgin most venerable, Pray for us.
Virgin most renowned, Pray for us.
Virgin most powerful, Pray for us.
Virgin most merciful, Pray for us.
Virgin most faithful, Pray for us.
Mirror of justice, Pray for us.
Seat of wisdom, Pray for us.
Cause of our joy, Pray for us.
Spiritual vessel, Pray for us.
Vessel of honour, Pray for us.
Singular vessel of devotion, Pray for us.
Mystical Rose, Pray for us.
Tower of David, Pray for us.
Tower of ivory, Pray for us.
House of gold, Pray for us.
Ark of the Covenant, Pray for us.
Gate of Heaven, Pray for us.
Morning star, Pray for us.
Health of the Sick, Pray for us.
Refuge of sinners, Pray for us.
Comforter of the afflicted, Pray for us.
Help of christians, Pray for us.
Queen of angels, Pray for us.
Queen of patriarchs, Pray for us.
Queen of prophets, Pray for us.
Queen of apostles, Pray for us.
Queen of martyrs, Pray for us.
Queen of confessors, Pray for us.
Queen of virgins, Pray for us.
Queen of all saints, Pray for us.
Queen conceived without original sin, Pray for us.
Queen assumed into Heaven, Pray for us.
Queen of the Holy Rosary, Pray for us.
Queen of families, Pray for us.
Queen of peace, Pray for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray: Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord God, that we Thy servants may enjoy perpetual health of mind and body, and by the glorious intercession of the Blessed Mary, ever Virgin, be delivered from present sorrow and enjoy everlasting happiness. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen

The Holy House arrived after a three year rest at Trsat

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