Thursday’s feast is one of only three birthdays observed in the Roman liturgical calendar. An interesting selection of music for the feast is on this week’s A(ustralian)BC’s program, For the God Who Sings, including a nice combination of chant, organum, and more modern works. Worth a listen. Customs on Mary’s birthday involve music, attested to by this quote from St Augustine:
Now let Mary play upon musical instruments and let timbrels reverberate under the fleet fingers of this young mother.
Move over Ringo Starr.
If the read word is more appealing than the notion of the Blessed Mother playing a trap set, catch an apocryphal gospel that details the birth of Mary. It is from such sources that we have something of the non-Biblical traditions in writing, for example, that Mary’s parents were Anne and Joachim. Interesting that this gospel is all over the internet, on sites ranging from the Gnostic Society Library to New Advent.
If food is more your thing, a rose petal cake is an approriate indulgence for the day. Lots of range here, from a pound cake with batter infused with rose water to this one which includes chopped rose petals. Angel food is another suggestion I’ve seen. The addition of rum or brandy to most of these recipes is a plus. My mom used to make a wicked rum cake, strong enough to give you a nice buzz if you were permitted seconds. But I digress …
NPR has a recipe for candied rose petals. Finger food, you know? Want the kids to remember their Catholic heritage, just serve up some goodies like this.