Mary grew up learning about the promise of the Messiah. When she was a young girl, Mary was engaged to a man named Joseph. Before they were married, she received a vision of an angel who asked her to be the mother of the Messiah she had waited for her whole life. Mary accepted, saying "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word" (Luke 1:38).
Being the mother of Jesus was not an easy task. Mary’s life was full of great joys and great sorrows. Mary and Joseph were poor people, so they both worked hard to provide food and shelter for Jesus. Mary raised her son in the traditions of her culture, presenting him in the temple when he was a baby and taking him to Jerusalem for the religious festivals. Since she knew who Jesus was and what his mission would be, it would have been a huge responsibility! During one trip to Jerusalem, Mary and Joseph lost Jesus. Since he was only twelve years old, they were very worried about him, and searched the city for three days. They finally found him in the temple, preaching to the elders and teachers.
Since Mary was the first to hear about the mission of Jesus, she is his first disciple. She dedicated her life on earth to following him and supporting his work. She showed others how to follow Jesus as well.
It was there that Jesus entrusted all of us to her care. This mission was very close to Mary’s heart. She comforted the Apostles and prayed with them after Jesus' Ascension into heaven. Mary was with the Apostles when they received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, and watched them depart for many different countries to spread the Good News of God’s love.
Since Mary was the first to hear about the mission of Jesus, she is his first disciple. She dedicated her life on earth to following him and supporting his work. She showed others how to follow Jesus as well. Her faith came from an understanding of the great gifts that God had given to her, especially the gift of her son Jesus.
In the month of May, we learn about and remember Mary, the Mother of God in a special way. Students and families can use the printables below to learn about Mary, read scriptures about Mary, and pray to honor Mary.
Download a Mary, Mother of God Kit that contains prayers and activities to honor Mary, the Church’s greatest saint. Share it with the students and families in your religious education program!
By following Mary, we can see the way to love Jesus more deeply and appreciate how much he loves us.
With the Mary, Mother of God Activity, students will come to understand that by learning about the life of Mary, we learn what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.
One way we honor Mary is by praying the rosary. This is usually done using a set of beads with a crucifix attached. We pray the rosary by praying the Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory to the Father over and over again. This creates a peaceful rhythm of prayer during which we can reflect on the special times in the lives of Mary and Jesus. These form the “mysteries” of the Rosary, four sets of meditations that include:
Download a printable activity that reviews the directions for praying the rosary. Children can complete the activity sheet with directions and decorate the beads. Families might display the finished handout as they pray the rosary during May or anytime.
Rose, thistle, violet, marigold, carnation, lily, and forget-me-not. Each of these flowers have a legend that associates the flower with the Blessed Mother. Flowers are one of the many symbols of Mary.
Some parishes have a celebration and a procession and coronation (or May crowning with flowers) of the statue of Mary. Children enjoy participating in these events and honoring Mary in this way, even if it’s a smaller scale crowning of a statue in their own religious education classroom or home.
As spring flowers abound in the month of May, consider a May crowning of a statue of Mary. Invite children to decorate paper flowers to use in a floral crown. This printable activity includes instructions for designing and constructing a simple paper crown of flower that can be used in a May crowning or displayed during May to honor Mary in the home, classroom, or parish.
Compliment your May crowning of Mary with these Floral Reflections on the Hail Mary in your home or parish.
Mary was the first to hear about the mission of Jesus. Mary’s faith came from an understanding of the great gifts that God had given to her, especially the gift of her Son, Jesus. She dedicated her life on earth to following him and showing others how to follow him. Have children and students study the Bible to learn more about Mary!
All you need to plan and implement this Bible activity for teens is a Bible and a copy of the Mary Scripture Quest Activity for each student. You may want to pair groups of students to complete this bible worksheet together.
When Mary accepted her role as the Mother of the Savior, she knew that he was her Savior as well. She exclaimed her gratitude to God in her prayer we call the Magnificat. We honor Mary by praying this prayer, and other special prayers. We ask Mary to pray for us and speak to her son on our behalf.
Explore and share some of these prayers with the Praying with Mary Prayer Card, which contains prayers to honor Mary, Mother of God, and the Church’s greatest saint. Share it with the students and families in your religious education program this month as you honor Mary in a special way.
Over the centuries, Christians have bestowed numerous names and titles upon Mary. These include references to apparition sites and symbolic roles.
In 1531, Mary appeared to a farmer named Juan Diego on Tepeyac Hill in Mexico. She spoke to him in his native language, asking that a church be built on the hill so that she could give her love, compassion, and help to the people. Her image appeared miraculously on his cloak and proved so powerful that the people, including Church leaders, believed that Mary had truly been there. A church was built on the hill, and the image from Juan Diego’s cloak is enshrined above the altar. Every year millions of people from all over the world visit this holy place.
Marian devotions are an integral and important part of our Catholic tradition. This collection of bilingual Marian Devotion Prayer Cards features Mary, the Mother of God, from Latin American cultures including Our lady of Guadalupe in Mexico. Honor Mary in May with each of these beautiful prayers in Spanish and English.
Learn even more and appreciate ways the Church honors Mary throughout the world during an Honoring Mary Around the World whole community event. Participants will learn how the Church honors Mary through prayer, pilgrimages, and the celebration of feast days. They will appreciate how Mary is honored around the world and in various cultures through art, prayer, devotions, and pilgrimages made to Marian shrines. They will also identify ways that Mary, through her life and faith, serves as a model for discipleship.
Download the Honoring Mary Around the World Handouts.
May is the Month of Mary. By following Mary, we can see the way to love Jesus more deeply and appreciate how much he loves us. Use these free resources to learn about and remember Mary, the Mother of God.