Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Immaculate Conception

Today the Roman Catholics are celebrating Immaculate Conception which the Blessed Virgin Mary conceived Jesus without original sin. It was established as a universal feast in 1476 by Pope Sixtus IV. He did not define the doctrine as a dogma, thus leaving Roman Catholics free to believe in it or not without being accused of heresy; this freedom was reiterated by the Council of Trent. The existence of the feast was a strong indication of the Church's belief in the Immaculate Conception, even before its 19th century definition as a dogma.

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