The Month of Mary
For Catholics, the month of May is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Throughout the month, parishioners gather at church in the evenings to worship and recite collective prayers to the Virgin. People would then say they were going to the Month of Mary “exercise”. For schoolchildren, this was done after classes when they would head to church in a procession. In Québec, this custom was effective for the better part of the 20th century, until the end of the 1970s.
Devotions to the Holy Virgin were accompanied by hymns, among which the Ave Maria and others that were specific to the Month of Mary, such as Overture to the Month of Mary, Salute, O Beautiful Month of Mary, The Most Beautiful Month, or Farewell to the Month of Mary. The best known hymn in Québec remains the very charismatic It’s the Month of Mary:
It’s the Month of Mary
It’s the most beautiful month
Let’s sing, we chosen ones
A new hymn
A revised version was published by Father Charles-Émile Gadbois in a special edition of the Bonne Chanson songbooks.