The Feast Day of The Venerable Mary Aikenhead

22 July 2021

The Feast Day of The Venerable Mary Aikenhead

Mary Aikenhead’s own life and work revolved around her deep compassion for the poor and her consciousness of their need for education. She was visionary, courageous, unshakeable in faith, hope-filled, compassionate and tireless. She invites us to:
-  Reach out to those in any kind of need – material, spiritual, physical, or intellectual;
-  Embrace the diversity of the contemporary world in all its complexity;
-  Trust in God’s providence;
-  Value education in the broadest sense;
-  Learn from each other and benefit from those more experience;
-  Be conscious of the bigger picture and have a universal vision for all;
-  Value literacy;
-  Have a great sense of humour;
-  Build good relationships; and
-  Treat with respect and reverence all that God has created.

In Mary’s own words:
“Let us value the great gift of creation and do our best to conserve it.”
“May we always try to act with justice and truth.”
“Providence can provide, Providence does provide, Providence will provide.”

The Cause:

Renewed energy and prayer are needed for the canonisation of Venerable Mary Aikenhead.  We, of course, know and believe that Mary Aikenhead is a saint.  However, there are official Vatican processes to be followed to have her declared a saint for the universal Church. The canonisation process is lengthy and difficult.  We refer to this process as ‘The Cause’. The Cause passes through four stages: Servant of God; Venerable; Beatification and finally Saint.

Mary Aikenhead was declared Venerable by Pope Francis on 18 March 2015. It was a day of great rejoicing for those who had worked so hard for many years to have her Cause passed through the Vatican office referred to as the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints.  Sr Josephine McDonald, RSC, now deceased, had worked assiduously for years as Vice-Postulator, to bring about this wonderful occasion.

Many throughout the world are now working diligently to have Mary Aikenhead declared Blessed.  There is a network of Cause Contact sisters in Australia, England, Scotland, Ireland, Zambia, Nigeria, Malawi and the United States. Our own Sister Elizabeth is the Contact sister for Australia and meets regularly via Zoom with the other sisters around the world.

Through the intercession of the Venerable Mary Aikenhead, let us pray for the miracle of peace in our lives, and in our world.

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