Honoring the Virgin Mary (Girls)

Hello All!!

Naming Puzzle: My husband and I are very devoted Catholics and we would like to honor the Virgin [name]Mary[/name] when we name our children–both female AND male children. This is somewhat easier with girls than boys, but still tricky, I am finding.

A second part of the Puzzle: no one in either of our families is Catholic–and they often tend to be a bit anti-Catholic. We worry that their might be some issues if we name the beloved First Grandchild something too Catholic-y (think [name]Marian[/name] girls names like [name]Lourdes[/name], [name]Guadalupe[/name], Assumpta, etc.). We would be willing to name a child one of these names if there was a more palatable nickname that could be used. SO-----

Without taking [name]Mary[/name] into account at all, my favorite girls names are

Now, in order to honor [name]Mary[/name] we COULD name our daughter one of these lovely names and give her a marian middle (anything from the traditional [name]Marie[/name] to the more exciting/exotic [name]Luz[/name] or [name]Paz[/name]). Examples:

[name]Imogen[/name] [name]Marie[/name]
[name]Penelope[/name] [name]Merced[/name] (means “mercy” in Spanish)
[name]Harriet[/name] [name]Luz[/name]
[name]Agnes[/name] [name]Mary[/name]

BUT–these first names, wonderful as they are, still seem like weak sauce in the Significance department–not family names, not honoring friends, not honoring a particular saint, Great Work of Literature, etc. I know that this should not dissuade me from using a name I love, but I feel like I want to give my child a name with great personal importance.

So back to Our Lady… I would love to give baby girl a name which honors [name]Mary[/name] in both first and last–which is Fully Significant/Meaningful to her very Catholic parentals… Here are my latest ideas:

[name]Rosemary[/name] _____ (nn [name]Rose[/name], [name]Rosie[/name], [name]Romy[/name], [name]Mary[/name])

(I love [name]Rosemary[/name]. We could call her [name]Rose[/name], [name]Rosie[/name], [name]Romy[/name] or [name]Mary[/name]–or [name]Rosemary[/name]. However, our last name is a word name–"[name]Winter[/name]"–and I’m not sure I like double word-names. It sounds like the title of a song or a poem: “[name]Rosemary[/name] [name]Winter[/name].” Besides, I can’t think of a middle name. Any suggestions??)

[name]Mary[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] (nn Sole, [name]Mary[/name]-[name]Sol[/name])

((SOUL-ay-dahd) I love the way this flows with our last name: [name]Mary[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Winter[/name]. And I love [name]Soledad[/name] used as a first: [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Winter[/name]. Problems…we are white without a dab of Latin blood. Is this too Spanish sounding? AND there’s the “too Catholic problem.” This name is definitely Catholic-y, comes from Our Lady of Solitude. I am considering nickname options here: Sole (pronounced SOUL-ay) or [name]Mary[/name]-[name]Sol[/name] (or [name]Marisol[/name]). What thinkest you??)

[name]Mary[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] (nn [name]Cora[/name], [name]Coco[/name])

(I don’t like the sound of [name]Socorro[/name] as much as [name]Soledad[/name]. But the [name]Marian[/name] devotion attached to this name (Our Lady of Perpetual Help ([name]Socorro[/name])) is more important to me personally. AND we could call her [name]Cora[/name] for short, yes?? Or even [name]Coco[/name] around the house. Not TOO Catholicy is it?)

So, these are the ladies. Any help for the religious nuts??

I was raised [name]Roman[/name] Catholic and will try to be of help! My boys have Pope names which honored the Catholic family but didn’t feel “too Catholic” for me, who’s not Catholic any longer. So that’s the perspective I’m coming from.

Let’s see, starting with the ones that mean more to you:

[name]Rosemary[/name]. With your surname, I’d put [name]Rosemary[/name] on a serious “Maybe” list. She sounds like a romance novel set in the 18th century: “[name]Rosemary[/name] [name]Winter[/name]”. Maybe, but you have other things I think work better, far better. :slight_smile:

[name]Mary[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] (nn Sole, [name]Mary[/name]-[name]Sol[/name]) - I like this quite a bit. There’a newscaster, [name]Soledad[/name] O’[name]Brien[/name] (or O’[name]Brian[/name], I forget) and she doens’t particulalrly look Hispanic either. I wouldn’t worry a bit about that. I really like [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Winter[/name], you could call her [name]Sunny[/name], too! [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name] would work beautifully and feel contemporary. [name]Mary[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] works too, but I like [name]Soledad[/name] better than [name]Mary[/name] (maybe because I grew up with the last batch of [name]Mary[/name]-whatever girls in the 70’s).

[name]Mary[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] (nn [name]Cora[/name], [name]Coco[/name]) - I think I’m having a problem overall with [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name], it sounds a bit too storybookish for even me. But flipping [name]Mary[/name] to the middle (where the honoring is for me) makes everything you’ve paired it with really shine (does that make sense?) plus, growing up with all those [name]Mary[/name]- whatever girls who went but the -Whatever; always seemed silly to me, “why not put the [name]Mary[/name] in the middle”? I always thought. [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name] is gorgeous, and yes, [name]Cora[/name] & [name]Coco[/name] both work as nicknames without seeming “too Catholic”. :slight_smile:

From these few, I really like [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name] and both [name]Mary[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Winter[/name] and [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name]!

Now, for the non-honoring first names. I’m partial to this pattern maybe because we do two middles and we use the middle for honoring, leaving the first name open to be something we both just love. Now the kids we have now have honoring first names as well, but it didn’t have to be, we just happened to love [name]Leo[/name], [name]Simon[/name] & [name]Josephine[/name] enough to use them up front anyway.

[name]Imogen[/name] [name]Marie[/name] - I love [name]Imogen[/name] but find [name]Marie[/name] a bit tongue twistery with it, very M heavy. [name]Imogen[/name] [name]Paz[/name] would be my suggestion to get away from those heavy M sounds a bit.

[name]Penelope[/name] [name]Merced[/name] (means “mercy” in Spanish) - This is lovely. [name]Truly[/name]. [name]Penelope[/name] is gorgeous and [name]Merced[/name] works beautifully in the mdiddle and both sound competely awesome with [name]Winter[/name]!

[name]Harriet[/name] [name]Luz[/name] - I like [name]Harriet[/name] (I have [name]Henrietta[/name], nn [name]Harriet[/name] on my list) [name]Harriet[/name] [name]Luz[/name] sounds wicked cool. And she could be [name]Etta[/name], [name]Hattie[/name] or [name]Hettie[/name], all of which completely charm me. This would easily be my top pick if this were my list!

[name]Agnes[/name] [name]Mary[/name] - sounds like a Nun. (I went to a Catholic grammar school, wore a uniform and did the Nun for a teacher thing for 8 years) yeah, [name]Agnes[/name] [name]Mary[/name] is a combo I would have expected to see on a Nun when I was a kid. I adore [name]Agnes[/name], though. [name]Aggie[/name] or Ness make lovely nickname choices but I’d make the middle [name]Miriam[/name], [name]Soledad[/name] (oooh [name]Agnes[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] is awesome!) or [name]Socorro[/name] ([name]Agnes[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] would be stunning!)

I would definitely put the honoring name in the middle, and have a bit of fun up font. The one piece of advice on naming my Mother gave me before she died was this “name a kid something you love saying, you’re going to say it a hundred thousand times a day once they’re born”. And now that I’m potentially looking at being a Grandma myself (my second born is thinking about asking his current GF to marry him!) I think this little piece of advice is going to be passed on to him. Life is too short not to use a name you love. And we’re still trying for #4!

So there’s what I’ve got to say, for whatever it’s worth. :slight_smile:

In oder of likes, for me:
[name]Soledad[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
[name]Harriet[/name] [name]Luz[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
[name]Agnes[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
[name]Agnes[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
[name]Mary[/name] [name]Soledad[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
[name]Mary[/name] [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
And a wildcard thought: [name]Mary[/name] [name]Lorraine[/name] [name]Winter[/name]?
[name]Lorraine[/name] is very pretty and lightens [name]Mary[/name] considerably. [name]Just[/name] a thought there.

I hope that helps some, you have good portion of lovely choices here, you really can’t go wrong with any of them! :smiley:

There was a post about names related to [name]Mary[/name] and the Virgin mary a looong time ago, so I thought that I would copy and paste the responses of unoriginal and susan to give you some more food for thought :slight_smile:

(Re: Names that are related to “[name]Mary[/name]”?

by unoriginal on Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:21 pm

Some ‘[name]Marian[/name]’ names:

I particularly like [name]Rosario[/name], [name]Pilar[/name], [name]Belen[/name], [name]Carmel[/name] and [name]Montserrat[/name].

Some ‘[name]Mary[/name]’ variants:
[name]Maris[/name] ([name]Marissa[/name]/[name]Marisol[/name])
Re: Names that are related to “[name]Mary[/name]”?

by susan on Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:32 pm

[name]Mary[/name] is such a lovely name. Can’t wait for it to get more popular again. Some names that are like it are: [name]Molly[/name], Mere, [name]Meryl[/name], [name]Marisa[/name], [name]Mariel[/name], [name]Meredith[/name], [name]Marin[/name], [name]Mamie[/name], [name]Miriam[/name], [name]Miri[/name], [name]Mira[/name], [name]Mirabelle[/name], [name]Mirabella[/name], and I’m sure there are many more. I really like [name]Mary[/name] [name]Rose[/name].)

I just want to add [name]Marisol[/name] and [name]Mariel[/name] to the mix! :slight_smile:

I’m not Catholic, but I’ve been an Anglican for several years. So I love Holy Family names and Creche names.
Holy Family Names that have to do with [name]Mary[/name]:
[name]Lourdes[/name] - a shrine to [name]Mary[/name]
[name]Carmel[/name] - a shrine to [name]Mary[/name]

I absolutely love the name [name]Rosemary[/name]!
Another fun name is [name]Prairie[/name] because it sounds so much like the word prayer.

Batul - Arabic for Virgin [name]Mary[/name]
[name]Dolores[/name] - [name]Maria[/name] del [name]Dolores[/name]
Impi - means virgin in Finnish
[name]Pilar[/name] - [name]St[/name]. [name]James[/name] the elder saw a vision of the Virgin [name]Mary[/name] on a pillar in Spain.
[name]Rocio[/name] - means “dew”. [name]Maria[/name] del Rocia mean [name]Mary[/name] of the Dew

I wasn’t raised around nuns and only came to know some as a young adult, when I taught at a tiny-but-fabulous Catholic boarding school. Of the whole lot, I love Anges [name]Mary[/name] the best-- it makes me want to swoon. [name]Marisol[/name] is also lovely; [name]Rosemary[/name] doesn’t do much for me, but that’s just personal preference. Nothing wrong with the name at all.

Thinking and thinking…

[name]Love[/name] all your suggestions–especially you, [name]Lola[/name]!

I do very much love the combo [name]Penelope[/name] [name]Merced[/name].

BUT–what about [name]Merced[/name] as a first?? Pronounced mer-SAYD.

[name]Merced[/name] [name]Lorraine[/name] [name]Winter[/name]?

You could call her [name]Sadie[/name]!

At this point my personal favorites:

  1. [name]Socorro[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name] ([name]Cora[/name], [name]Coco[/name] around the house)
  2. [name]Penelope[/name] [name]Merced[/name] [name]Winter[/name]
  3. [name]Merced[/name] [name]Lorraine[/name] [name]Winter[/name] ([name]Sadie[/name] around the house)

[name]Hi[/name] again!

From your whittled now “as of now” list, I really like

[name]Socorro[/name] [name]Mary[/name] [name]Winter[/name] ([name]Cora[/name], [name]Coco[/name] around the house) & [name]Penelope[/name] [name]Merced[/name] [name]Winter[/name], I like [name]Merced[/name] but not [name]Sadie[/name]. It sounds cheap to me.

[name]Just[/name] remember, any nickname around the house tends to carry to outside as well! I like [name]Cora[/name] as a casual nn for [name]Socorro[/name].[name]Coco[/name]'s cute but reminds me of a Gorilla for some reason. What would you nn a [name]Penelope[/name]? :slight_smile: