Mary: Our Life, Our Sweetness And Our Hope…
She is the Daughter of God the Father, the Mother of God the Son and the mystical Spouse of the Holy Spirit – yes, the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is Queen of Angels, Queen of Confessors, Queen of Martyrs and Virgins, as well as Queen of the Most Holy Rosary – yes, the Blessed Virgin Mary. She is our heavenly Mother, proclaimed from the top of the cross: “Woman, behold your son; son, here is your mother. (Jn. 19, 26-27) Yes, once again, it is the Blessed Virgin Mary. Finally, Saint Louis de Montfort honors this same woman in these sublime words: “Mary is the masterpiece of all of God’s creation.The same saint testifies that the quickest, easiest and surest way to Jesus himself passes through the person and the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
In these most difficult times when storms, tempests and mighty whirlwinds seem to be beating down on the whole world, we must now more than ever seek security and refuge in the person of Mary, in her Most Pure and Immaculate Heart .
As in those sinful times of Noah when the only refuge to be found was in the Ark built by Noah, we must also seek refuge in a safe Ark of Refuge, that is, in the embrace of our Heavenly Mother. The Immaculate Heart of Mary must be for us the modern Noah’s Ark. At Fatima, Our Lady herself made a most consoling prophecy: “In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.”
May we be transformed into flaming arrows in the hands of Mary who is Mother, Queen and General of an army arrayed in battle formation. Our Lady longs for us to give our hearts, minds, and souls to her, but she also longs for us to bring others, and many more, into her heart as a safe haven and refuge.
To be transformed into ardent disciples of Mary, and of course of Jesus – for Mary always opens the way to Jesus – we must strive to know Mary better.
This will be the subject of our short exhibition. We will suggest several ways for you to grow in our knowledge of Mary, in order to love her more ardently and to entrust our lives entirely to her. Indeed, our modern Ark of safety and refuge is the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
1. MARY AND THE SACRED SCRIPTURE. First and foremost, let us get to know Mary from the best of all sources, which is Holy Scripture, the Bible, which is indeed the living Word of God. Among the most important passages are those found in the Gospel of Saint Luke, chapters one and two. In these two chapters we discover the mystery of the Incarnation and the five Joyful Mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary. There are many more passages, but let’s start with chapters one and two of Luke.
2. THE GLORY OF MARY: SAINT ALPHONSUS LIGUORI. Many literary masterpieces have been written over the past 2000 years on the subject of Mary. True! However, the Marian literary gem and masterpiece of Alphonsus Liguori, saint and doctor of the Church, is of paramount importance. In this work, Ligouri takes up the Ave Holy Queen and explains in great detail, one word at a time, this beautiful prayer that is recited at the conclusion of the Most Holy Rosary. His superb explanation is gleaned from a vast reservoir of resources: Sacred Scripture – both the Old and New Testaments, Church Fathers, Church Saints, Popes and many others. reliable resources. It would be almost impossible to read this masterpiece without falling even more in love with Mary who is truly our life, our sweetness and our hope.
3. THREE APPROVED MARIAN KEY APPEARANCES. Although not strictly mandatory for our belief, it would be unwise to dismiss or discredit the three major approved Marian apparitions. Of course, it would be Our Lady of Guadalupe, Our Lady of Lourdes and Our Lady of Fatima. Our Lady of Guadalupe appeared four times in 1531 to the Indian saint Juan Diego declaring that she was our Mother, and from there almost eight million Mexicans were converted in about 30 years! No wave of conversions in such a short time equals this intervention of Mary! Our Lady of Lourdes appeared 18 times to Saint Bernadette Soubirous. During the last appearance, Bernadette asks the beautiful Lady her name. Mary proclaimed herself in these words: “I am the Immaculate Conception.” When Bernadette reported this to the priest, the authenticity of the apparitions was confirmed. Pope Pius IX had proclaimed the dogma of the Immaculate Conception only four years earlier and it was impossible for this ill-educated peasant woman to know about it. Finally, Our Lady appeared in Fatima, Portugal, six times to three humble shepherd children—Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta. At the end, Mary identified herself as “Our Lady of the Rosary. In each of these apparitions, Mary urged to recite the Holy Rosary daily.
4. MARIAL ART: OUR LADY OF PERPETUAL HELP. The masterpieces of Marian art are almost uncountable. However, you could make an effort to get a nice representation of OUR LADY OF PERPETUAL HELP. According to tradition, this Marian masterpiece was probably painted by the great Saint Luke. Contemplate the serious gaze of Mary and imagine that she is looking at you with love as she embraces the child Jesus who contemplates the instruments of his next passion. To see the sandal fall from one of his feet. Also, contemplate the presence of angels in this artistic masterpiece. Do not hesitate to place yourself in Mary’s arms, seeking her consolation and protection as your Mother.
5. THE LITANY OF LORETO. Among the many biblical, poetic and mystical expressions that honor the richness of the person of Our Lady are her many Litanies. Begin with the Litany of Loreto, the classic litany that honors Mary. If we love and honor a person, we want to accentuate and emphasize that person’s virtues. This litany of praise includes many of the sublime attributes or virtues that Mary experienced and practiced, and serves as our motivation to emulate those virtues and become the saint God has called us to become. We tend to imitate those we love!
6. MARIAN FRIENDS IN CONVERSATION. I have noticed over time that there is a real spiritual camaraderie and bond of friendship between people who have an ardent love and devotion to Mary and who desire to grow in this noble quest to grow in true devotion to Married. In a nutshell, gather with others to share your knowledge of Mary. Indeed, it is an enormous act of charity to share spiritual treasures, more particularly the knowledge and love of Mary. How many people have been brought to Jesus and eternal salvation once they have been initiated into the love of our Mother, our Heavenly Mother Mary. “We never knew that someone who fled under your protection was left unaided” (The prayer of memory).
7. MARY CONFERENCES OR SEMINARS. Have your eyes and ears open for good, solid and orthodox lectures, seminars or lectures on the Blessed Virgin Mary. Father Donald Calloway in recent years has written an excellent book on Mary—ROSARY CHAMPIONS. He also gave superb lectures on the power of the Most Holy Rosary in Salvation History.
8. MARIAN COMPENDIUM. With your permission, I would humbly invite everyone to purchase my book Marian collection, (TAN Books, 2022). After many years of hard work and suffering, this book has been published; I believe it is a masterpiece. In all honesty, I believe this labor of love for Mary can help you immensely to grow in your love and devotion to Mary and your desire to emulate her most sublime virtues. In this compendium, written in an easy-to-follow literary style, you will discover the essentials of sound Mariology – a true understanding of Mary and a true love for Mary. The book contains the following: Marian dogmas, Marian devotions (a veritable plethora), approved Marian apparitions, feasts in honor of Mary, marvelous and inspiring masterpieces of Marian art, and finally the most renowned Marian prayers.
In conclusion, friends in Jesus and Mary, one of the most important initiatives and undertakings, as well as goals, that we can and must undertake in our lives, is to know Jesus and to love Jesus more fully, totally and fervently every day of our lives. However, we must strive to know Jesus through the person of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Pope Saint John Paul II, I believe, hit the nail on the head in his apostolic letter, The Blessed Virgin Mary and the Rosary. This great Marian pontiff, whose papal emblem and motto were All tuus—Mary, I’m all yours of Saint Louis de Montfort, affirms in this writing that we must strive to contemplate the Face of Jesus through the eyes and the Heart of Mary. Friends, this should be the goal of our life: to contemplate the Face of Jesus through the eyes and Heart of Mary. If it is done in this life, then we will contemplate without interruption the Face of Jesus forever in Heaven, close to Mary who will be our life, our sweetness and our hope for all eternity.