December 8 is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. Under this title, declared dogma of the Roman Catholic Church by Pope Pius IX in 1854 (as depicted above in the Immaculate Conception Chapel of the Papal Apartments in Vatican City), the Blessed Virgin Mary is the patroness of the United States of America. Pope Pius IX proclaimed ex cathedra: "that the Blessed Virgin Mary "in the first instance of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race, was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin."
"Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of death. Amen!"