The Consecration of Canada to the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Consecration of Canada to the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

On July 1, 2017, the Bishops of Canada consecrated the country to the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary as part of the celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of Confederation.

Beginning with the early Jesuit missionaries who consecrated their missions to Mary Immaculate, a number of Canadian dioceses, eparchies, parishes, schools, cities and buildings have been named in her honour. The first time the country as a whole was consecrated to the Blessed Mother took place in 1947 during the National Marian Congress which was held in Ottawa. Ranked at the time as the largest religious gathering until then in North America, the celebration marked the centenary of the Archdiocese of Ottawa and focused on the hope for lasting world peace. A message by Pope Pius XII was broadcast during the Eucharist and was carried by a number of radio stations across the country. The prayer of consecration was led in French and English by two federal Cabinet ministers, the Right Honourable Louis St-Laurent, then Secretary of State for External Affairs, and the Honourable James J. McCann, Minister of National Revenue and Minister of War Services. Archival information on the 1947 consecration is available on the website https://sites.google.com/site/mariancongress1947/.

As part of the 1954 Marian Year, during a celebration at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Cape, near Trois-Rivières, Quebec, all the Catholic Bishops of Canada, led by Their Eminences James Cardinal McGuigan and Paul-Émile Léger, then Archbishop of Toronto and Archbishop of Montreal respectively, consecrated the country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. That first of what until now have been two Marian Years declared by the Supreme Pontiff marked the centenary of the solemn proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.

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