-- Vatican Information Service
ANGELUS REFLECTIONS ON DOGMA OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION
CONCEPTIONVATICAN CITY, DEC 5, 2004 (VIS) - Pope John Paul dedicated today's Angelus reflections entirely to the upcoming feast of the Immaculate Conception, as this year marks the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of this dogma by Pope Pius IX.
"We prepare to celebrate with intimate joy," he said, "the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary which this year takes on special meaning. We will commemorate, in fact, the 150 years since the proclamation of this important Marian doctrine.
"We will remember this anniversary on December 8 with a solemn Eucharistic celebration in St. Peter's Basilica where, in 1854 my venerated predecessor, Blessed Pius IX, proclaimed the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, together with many bishops from every part of the world. Thus we will honor 'Tota pulchra', she whom God chose as the Mother of His only begotten Son."
The Holy Father closed by reminding everyone that in the afternoon, as he does every year, he will go to Rome's famed Piazza di Spagna for the traditional homage to Mary Immaculate. "I invite all of you, dear Romans and pilgrims, to join me in this act of filial veneration to our heavenly Mother."