Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary
Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary

March 2024 — Overview for the Month

by Catholic Culture Staff

Description

The month of March is dedicated to St. Joseph.


Highlights

March 17
St. Patrick

St. Patrick is called the "Apostle of Ireland." He established the Catholic Church throughout Ireland on lasting foundations. He traveled all over the country preaching, teaching, building churches, opening schools and monasteries, converting chiefs and bards, and everywhere supporting his preaching with miracles.

Recipe of the Month
St. Joseph's Cream Puffs

For St. Joseph's Day try this simple of version of a special dessert for the Solemnity of St. Joseph called St. Joseph's Sfinge.

Activity of the Month
St. Joseph's Table

The family, who with lighted candles goes in spirit to the Temple with our Lady, will learn a wonderful lesson of her humility.


Symbols

St. Joseph

The only record of St. Joseph is found in the Gospels where it states that he was a just man, of Davidic descent, who worked as a carpenter. His symbol is a carpenter's square and a lily of the Madonna.

St. Patrick

Saint Patrick's Saltire or Saint Patrick's Cross is a red saltire (X-shaped cross) on a white field, used to represent the island of Ireland or Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland.

St. Cyril of Jerusalem

The Bishop of Jerusalem, a teacher and scholar, who triumphed in his struggle against Arian doctrines. The moneybag refers to a story that he sold the ornaments of the church to provide food for the poor.


The Lord has put his faithful servant in charge of his household.

Publisher & Date

Catholic Culture, July 9, 2021

The entire month of March except the very last day falls during the liturgical season of Lent which is represented by the liturgical color violet or purple — a symbol of penance, mortification and the sorrow of a contrite heart. All saint days that are usually Memorials are shifted to Optional Memorials during the season of Lent. The last day of the month is the beginning of the Easter season.

The Holy Father's Intentions for the Month of March 2024

For the new martyrs: We pray that those who risk their lives for the Gospel in various parts of the world inflame the Church with their courage and missionary enthusiasm. (See also https://www.usccb.org/prayers/popes-monthly-intentions-2024)


Feasts for March 2024

3. THIRD SUNDAY OF LENT, Sunday
4. Casimir of Poland, Opt. Mem.
7. Perpetua and Felicity, Opt. Mem.
8. John of God, Opt. Mem.
9. Frances of Rome, Opt. Mem.
10. FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT, Sunday
17. FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT, Sunday
18. Cyril of Jerusalem, Opt. Mem.
19. JOSEPH, SPOUSE OF MARY, Solemnity
23. Turibius of Mogrovejo, Opt. Mem.
24. PALM SUNDAY OF THE LORD'S PASSION, Holy Week
25. Monday of Holy Week, Holy Week
26. Tuesday of Holy Week, Holy Week
27. Wednesday of Holy Week, Holy Week
28. Holy Thursday, Triduum
29. Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion, Triduum
30. Holy Saturday, Triduum
31. EASTER SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION OF THE LORD, Triduum

Focus of the Liturgy
The Gospel readings for the Sundays in the Lenten season are from Cycle B, unless a parish has catechumens, so they would then follow Cycle A. The Weekday readings follow the annual Lenten readings.

March 3rd
Third Sunday of Lent

Year B, John 2:13-25: Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

March 10
Fourth Sunday of Lent

Year B, John 3:14-21: God sent his son so that the world might be saved through him.

March 17
Fifth Sunday of Lent

Year B, John 12:20-33: If a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it produces much fruit.

March 24
Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

Year B, Mark 14:1-15; 47: The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St. Mark.

March 31
Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord

Years A, B, C, John 20:1-9: He had to rise from the dead.


Highlights of the Month

As we continue our journey "up to Jerusalem" during the month of March, three prominent ideas are proposed for our contemplation by the liturgy of Lent: the Passion and Resurrection of Christ, baptism, and penance.

The Solemnity of St. Joseph (March 19) is a special landmark this month in which we will celebrate the great honor bestowed upon the foster father of Jesus.

The saints that we will focus on this month and try to imitate are:
St. Katharine Drexel (March 3),
St. Casimir (March 4),
Sts. Perpetua and Felicity (March 7),
St. John of God (March 8),
St. Frances of Rome (March 9),
St. Cyril of Jerusalem (March 18),
St. Joseph (March 20)
and St. Turibio de Mogrovejo (March 23).

The feast of St. Patrick (March 17), is superseded by the Lenten Sunday liturgy.

This year the feast of the Annunciation will be celebrated on April 8 since the 25th falls on Good Friday. The feast of is superseded by the Holy Week liturgy.


A Time of Penance and Promise

Here and there in the stark March landscape, a few plants and trees are beginning to give evidence of the new life that winter’s frost and chill had concealed from our eyes. The Church’s vibrant new life has been obscured, too, by the austerity of the penitential season of Lent. But that life is indisputable, and it will burgeon forth on Easter as Christ coming forth from his tomb!

We will continue our journey to the cross with our acts of penitence. We will reflect on our mortality (Remember man thou art dust) and the shortness of life (and to dust thou shall return). We will heed the call, Now is the acceptable time, now is “the day of salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2).” Just like Our Lord's earthly life every moment of our lives is leading up to the last moment—when for eternity we will either go to God or suffer the fires of hell.

During this month we will go from the suffering of Good Friday to the joy of Easter Sunday. We will trade the purple of penance for the white of victory and resurrection. The feast of the Annunciation, normally celebrated on March 25, has been transferred to April 8 since it falls during Holy Week.

As the weeks of Lent progress let us not tire of doing our good works and penance, but continue with the enthusiasm of the catechumens on their way to Easter and Baptism. May our Lenten observance be a joyful journey — and not a forced march.


Go to Joseph

“This patronage must be invoked as ever necessary for the Church, not only as a defense against all dangers, but also, and indeed primarily, as an impetus for her renewed commitment to evangelization in the world and to re-evangelization,” wrote St. John Paul II in Redemptoris Custos (Guardian of the Redeemer).

John Paul II further said, “Because St. Joseph is the protector of the Church, he is the guardian of the Eucharist and the Christian family. Therefore, we must turn to St. Joseph today to ward off attacks upon the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist and upon the family. We must plead with St. Joseph to guard the Eucharistic Lord and the Christian family during this time of peril.”

This item 12540 digitally provided courtesy of CatholicCulture.org