In the Roman Catholic Church, May is traditionally a month of devotion to Mary. Poland has long been known for its national devotion to the Blessed Mother, having proclaimed her the queen and protector of the country. The Felician Sisters, founded in Poland by Blessed Mary Angela Truszkowska have a deep Marian devotion, honoring Mary as the Mother of Jesus and of the Congregation and emulating her as a model of faithfulness and humility.
Throughout the Province, the Felician Sisters and their ministries, celebrate the annual May Crowing in many different ways. Each year, statues of Mary are given places of honor and adorned with flowers in celebration of her role as our Blessed Mother. Our sisters and the children we serve often take part, proudly and reverently placing crowns of flowers on the Blessed Mother.
At the St. Mary Child Care Center and the Montessori Center of Our Lady, both in Livonia, MI, the children made beautifully handcrafted flowers, which they placed at Mary’s feet. At Immaculate Conception High School in Lodi, NJ, members of the senior class placed a crown of blue flowers – the school colors – on the statues of Mary. One student said, “The May Crowning is a tradition I have watched past senior classes do during my time at ICHS. Having the opportunity to participate in this special tradition was such an amazing experience.”
In fact, many ministries have long-standing traditions in their celebration of the May Crowning. In Jacmel, Haiti, the children of Felician Mission: Haiti crown a statue of their patron, Our Lady of Perpetual Help. At Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School in Coraopolis, PA, the crowning takes place at the Our Lady of Fatima grotto on the campus they share with the chapel and convent.
For the sisters, jubilarians often have the honor of placing the crown on Mary. At Our Lady of the Angels Convent in Chicago, Sr. Mary Lucia Skalka, who is celebrating her 75th jubilee this year, carried a pillow bearing a crown of flowers while Sr. Mary Lucy Korzekwa, who is celebrating her 70th jubilee, carried a bouquet. Sr. Mary Theophilia Tworzydlo, who is also celebrating 70 years as a Felician Sister, placed the crown on the statue. Local minister Sr. Mary Ursula Myszka noted, “We are blessed to be able to gather and celebrate at this time when, a year ago, we were quarantined.”