PART III. THEME: KNOWLEDGE OF MARY
Acts of love, pious affections for the Blessed Virgin, imitation of her virtues, especially her profound humility, her lively faith, her blind obedience, her continual mental prayer, her mortification in all things, her ardent charity, her heroic patience, her angelic sweetness and her divine wisdom: “these being,” as St. Louis De Montfort says, “the ten principal virtues of the Blessed Virgin.”
We must unite ourselves to Jesus through Mary -this is the characteristic of our devotion; therefore Saint Louis De Montfort asks that we employ ourselves in acquiring a knowledge of the Blessed Virgin. Mary is our sovereign and our mediatrix, our Mother and our Mistress. Let us then endeavour to know the effects of this royalty, of this mediation, and of this maternity, as well as the grandeurs and prerogatives which are the foundation or consequences thereof. Our Blessed Mother is also perfect-a mould wherein we are able to be moulded in order to make her intentions and dispositions ours. This we cannot achieve without studying the interior life of Mary, namely, her virtues, her sentiments, her actions, her participation in the mysteries of Christ and her union with Him.
St. Luke: Chapter 2, 16–21; 42.52
And they came with haste, and they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in a manger. And, seeing, they understood of the word that had been spoken to them concerning this child. And all that heard wondered at those things that were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, praising and glorifying God, for all the things that they had heard and seen as it was told unto them. And after eight days were accomplished, that the child should be circumcised, his Name was called Jesus, which was called by the angel before he was conceived in the womb. . . .
And when he was twelve years old, they going up to Jerusalem, according to the custom of the feast, and having fulfilled the days, when they returned, the child Jesus remained in Jerusalem. And, his parents knew it not. And thinking that He was in the company, they came a day’s journey, and sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance. And not finding him, they returned into Jerusalem seeking him. And it came to pass, that, after three days, they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his wisdom and his answers.
And seeing him, they wondered. And his Mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? Behold, thy Father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And He said to them: How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the word that He spoke unto them. And He went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them. And His Mother kept all these words in her heart. And Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God and men.
LITANY OF THE HOLY GHOST
(For private devotion only)
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Father, all powerful, have mercy on us.
Jesus, Eternal Son of the Father, Redeemer of the world, save us. Spirit of the Father and the Son, boundless life of both, sanctify us. Holy Trinity, hear us.
Holy Ghost, Who proceedest from the Father and the Son, enter our hearts. Holy Ghost, Who art equal to the Father and the Son, enter our hearts. Promise of God the Father,
Ray of heavenly light,
Author of all good,
Source of heavenly water,
Spirit of love and truth,
Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
Spirit of counsel and fortitude,
Spirit of knowledge and piety,
Spirit of the fear of the Lord,
Spirit of grace and prayer,
Spirit of peace and meekness,
Spirit of modesty and innocence,
Holy Ghost, the Comforter,
Holy Ghost, the Sanctifier,
Holy Ghost, Who governest the Church,
Gift of God, the Most High
Spirit of the adoption of the children of God,
Holy Ghost, inspire us with the horror of sin,
Holy Ghost, come and renew the face of the earth,
Holy Ghost, shed Thy light in our souls,
Holy Ghost, engrave the law in our hearts,
Holy Ghost, inflame us with the flame of Thy love,
Holy Ghost, open to us the treasures of thy Graces,
Holy Ghost, teach us to pray well.
Holy Ghost, enlighten us with Thy heavenly inspirations.
Holy Ghost, lead us in the way of salvation.
Holy Ghost, grant us the only necessary knowledge.
Holy Ghost, inspire in us the practice of good.
Holy Ghost, grant us the merits of all virtues.
Holy Ghost, make us persevere in justice.
Holy Ghost, be Thou our everlasting reward.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, send us Thy Holy Ghost.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, pour down into our souls the gifts of the Holy Ghost. Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, grant us the Spirit of wisdom and piety.
V/. Come, Holy Ghost! Fill the hearts of Thy faithful.
R/. And enkindle in them the fire of Thy love.
Let us pray
Grant, O merciful Father, that Thy Divine Spirit enlighten, inflame and purify us, that He may penetrate us with
His heavenly dew and make us fruitful in good works; through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who with Thee, in the unity of the same Spirit, liveth and reigneth forever and ever. Amen.
LITANY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us. God the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Holy Mother of God,
Holy Virgin of virgins,
Mother of Christ,
Mother of divine grace,
Mother most pure,
Mother most chaste,
Mother most amiable,
Mother most admirable,
Mother of good counsel,
Mother of our Creator,
Mother of our Savior,
Virgin most prudent,
Virgin most venerable,
Virgin most renowned,
Virgin most powerful,
Virgin most merciful,
Virgin most faithful,
Mirror of justice,
Seat of wisdom,
Cause of our joy,
Vessel of honour,
Singular vessel of devotion,
Tower of David,
Tower of ivory,
House of gold,
Ark of the covenant,
Gate of heaven,
Health of the Sick,
Refuge of sinners,
Comforter of the afflicted,
Help of Christians,
Queen of angels,
Queen of patriarchs,
Queen of prophets,
Queen of Apostles,
Queen of martyrs,
Queen of confessors,
Queen of virgins,
Queen of all saints,
Queen conceived without original sin,
Queen assumed into heaven,
Queen of the most holy Rosary,
Queen of peace.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
V/. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God.
R/. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us pray
Grant unto us, Thy servants, we beseech Thee, O Lord God, at all times to enjoy health of soul and body; and by the glorious intercession of Blessed Mary, ever virgin, when freed from the sorrows of this present life, to enter into that joy which hath no end. Through Christ our Lord.
(Indulgence of seven years. Plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, if recited with the versicle and oration daily for a month.—Preces et Pia Opera, 290.)
AVE MARIS STELLA
Hail, bright star of ocean, God’s own Mother blest, Ever sinless Virgin,
Gate of heavenly rest.
Taking that sweet Ave Which from Gabriel came, Peace confirm within us, Changing Eva’s name. Break the captives’ fetters, Light on blindness pour, All our ills expelling, Every bliss implore.
Show thyself a Mother;
May the Word Divine,
Born for us thy Infant,
Hear our prayers through thine.
Virgin all excelling,
Mildest of the mild,
Freed from guilt, preserve us, Pure and undefiled.
Keep our life all spotless, Make our way secure, Till we find in Jesus
Joy for evermore.
Through the highest heaven
To the Almighty Three,
Father, Son and Spirit,
One same glory be. Amen.
(Indulgence of three years. Plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, if recited daily for a month. -Preces et Pia Opera, 292.)
ST. LOUIS DE MONTFORT’S PRAYER TO MARY
Hail Mary, beloved Daughter of the Eternal Father. Hail Mary, admirable Mother of the Son. Hail Mary, faithful Spouse of the Holy Ghost. Hail Mary, my Mother, my loving Mistress, my powerful sovereign. Hail, my joy, my glory, my heart and my soul. Thou art all mine by mercy, and I am thine by justice. But I am not yet sufficiently thine. I now give myself wholly to thee without keeping anything back for myself or others. If thou seest anything in me which does not belong to thee, I beseech thee to take it and make thyself the absolute Mistress of all that is mine.
Destroy in me all that may displease God; root it up and bring it to nought. Place and cultivate in me everything that is pleasing to thee. May the light of thy faith dispel the darkness of my mind. May thy profound humility take the place of my pride; may thy sublime contemplation check the distractions of my wandering imagination. May the continuous sight of God fill my memory with His presence; may the burning love of thy heart inflame the lukewarmness of mine. May thy virtues take the place of my sins; may thy merits be my only adornment in the sight of God and make up for all that is wanting in me. Finally, dearly beloved Mother, grant if it be possible, that I may have no other spirit but thine to know Jesus, and His Divine Will; that I may have no other soul but thine to praise and glorify God; that I may have no other heart but thine to love God with a love as pure and ardent as thine.
I do not ask thee for visions, revelations, sensible devotions, or spiritual pleasures. It is thy privilege to see God clearly, it is thy privilege to enjoy heavenly bliss; it is thy privilege to triumph gloriously in heaven at the right hand of thy Son and to hold absolute sway over angels, men and demons.
It is thy privilege to dispose of all the gifts of God, just as thou willest. Such is, O heavenly Mary, the ‘best part,’ which the Lord hast given thee, and which shall never be taken away from thee-and this thought, fills my heart with joy. As for my part here below, I wish for no other than that which was thine, to believe sincerely without spiritual pleasures, to suffer joyfully without human consolation, to die continually to myself without respite, and to work zealously and unselfishly for thee until death, as the humblest of thy servants. The only grace I beg thee, for me, is that every moment of the day, and every moment of my life, I may say -”Amen, so be it, to all that thou art doing in heaven. Amen; so be it, to all thou didst do while on earth. Amen, so be it, to all thou art doing in my soul,” so that thou alone mayest fully glorify Jesus in me for time and eternity. Amen.
Recitation of the Rosary . . .