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Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary – day 10

Readings from : Imitation of Christ, by Thomas á Kempis: Book 3, Chapter 10
That it is sweet to despise the world and to serve God

Now, will I speak again, O Lord, and will not be silent, I will say in the hearing of my God and my King Who is on high: Oh, how great is the abundance of Thy sweetness, O Lord, which Thou hast hidden for those that fear Thee! But what art Thou, for those who love Thee? What, to those who serve Thee with their whole heart? Unspeakable indeed is the sweetness of Thy contemplation, which Thou bestowest on those who love Thee. In this most of all hast Thou showed me the sweetness of Thy love, that when I had no being, Thou didst make me; and when I was straying far from Thee, Thou brought me back again, that I might serve Thee: and Thou hast commanded me to serve Thee. O Fountain of everlasting love, what shall I say of Thee? How can I forget Thee, Who hast vouchsafed to remember me even after I was corrupted and lost? Beyond all hope Thou showest mercy to Thy servant; and beyond all desert, hast Thou manifested Thy grace and friendship. What return shall I make to Thee for this favor? For it is granted to all who forsake these things, to renounce the world, and to assume the monastic life. Is it much that I should serve Thee, Whom the whole creation is bound to serve? It ought not to seem much to me to serve Thee; but this does rather appear great and wonderful to me, that Thou vouchsafest to receive one so wretched and unworthy as Thy servant. It is a great honor, a great glory, to serve Thee, and to despise all things for Thee, for they who willingly subject themselves to Thy holy service, shall have great grace. They shall experience the most sweet consolation of the Holy Spirit, Who for the love of Thee, have cast aside all carnal delight.

See prayers from day 1

Reflection: As we continue to focus on casting off the spirit of the world and offering ourselves in prayer to Jesus through Mary we can pray the most perfect prayer of the rosary on this lovely pearl Our Lady of Guadalupe rosary.

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Preparation for Total Consecration to Jesus Through Mary

(according to St. Louis Marie de Montfort)

Consecration to Jesus Through Mary

Part 1 – 12 Day Preparation

 Theme: Spirt of the World

 Reading  Matthew 5:1-19

And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain, and when he was set down, his disciples came unto him. And opening his mouth, he taught them, saying: Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are the meek: for they shall possess the land. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice: for they shall have their fill. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the clean of heart: for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called children of God. Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye when they shall revile you, and persecute you, and speak all that is evil against you, untruly, for my sake: Be glad and rejoice, for your reward is very great in heaven. For so they persecuted the prophets that were before you. You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing any more but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men. You are the light of the world. A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are in the house. So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. He therefore that shall break one of these least commandments, and shall so teach men, shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven. But he that shall do and teach, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Daily Reflection:

Examine your conscience, pray, practice renouncement of your own will; mortification, purity of heart. This purity is the indispensable condition for contemplating God in heaven, to see Him on earth and to know Him by the light of faith. The first part of the preparation should be employed in casting off the spirit of the world which is contrary to that of Jesus Christ. The spirit of the world consists essentially in the denial of the supreme dominion of God; a denial which is manifested in practice by sin and disobedience; thus it is principally opposed to the spirit of Christ, which is also that of Mary.

It manifests itself by the concupiscence of the flesh, by the concupiscence of the eyes and by the pride of life. By disobedience to God’s laws and the abuse of created things. Its works are: sin in all forms, then all else by which the devil leads to sin; works which bring error and darkness to the mind, and seduction and corruption to the will. Its pomps are the splendor and the charms employed by the devil to render sin alluring in persons, places and things.

As we devote this time in prayer to Mary we may pray the rosary on this beautiful rose petal rosary.

Prayers:

Veni Creator

Come, Holy Spirit, Creator blest,
and in our souls take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heavenly aid
to fill the hearts which Thou hast made.

O comforter, to Thee we cry,
O heavenly gift of God Most High,
O fount of life and fire of love,
and sweet anointing from above.

Thou in Thy sevenfold gifts are known;
Thou, finger of God’s hand we own;
Thou, promise of the Father,
Thou Who dost the tongue with power imbue.

Kindle our sense from above,
and make our hearts overflow with love;
with patience firm and virtue high
the weakness of our flesh supply.

Far from us drive the foe we dread,
and grant us Thy peace instead;
so shall we not, with Thee for guide,
turn from the path of life aside.

Oh, may Thy grace on us bestow
the Father and the Son to know;
and Thee, through endless times confessed,
of both the eternal Spirit blest.

Now to the Father and the Son,
Who rose from death, be glory given,
with Thou, O Holy Comforter,
henceforth by all in earth and heaven. Amen.

Ave Maris Stella

Hail, O Star of the ocean,
God’s own Mother blest,
ever sinless Virgin,
gate of heav’nly rest.

Taking that sweet Ave,
which from Gabriel came,
peace confirm within us,
changing Eve’s name.

Break the sinners’ fetters,
make our blindness day,
Chase all evils from us,
for all blessings pray.

Show thyself a Mother,
may the Word divine
born for us thine Infant
hear our prayers through thine.

Virgin all excelling,
mildest of the mild,
free from guilt preserve us
meek and undefiled.

Keep our life all spotless,
make our way secure
till we find in Jesus,
joy for evermore.

Praise to God the Father,
honor to the Son,
in the Holy Spirit,
be the glory one. Amen.

Magnificat

My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior. Because He hath regarded the humility of His handmaid; for behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Because He that is mighty hath done great things to me; and holy is His name. And His mercy is from generation to generations, to them that fear Him. He hath showed might in His arm; He hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart.  He hath put down the mighty from their seat; and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath received Israel His servant, being mindful of His mercy. As He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed forever. Amen.

Glory Be

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Ame

 

 

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The Story of Our Lady of Lourdes

By Marianne Buzzelli

Our Lady of Lourdes appeared to Bernadette Soubirous on February 11, 1858 in the Grotto of Massabielle, in France. Bernadette was on her way to fetch fire wood and came to a narrow stream. As she approached the stream she heard the sound of wind, but when she looked around she saw that the trees and bushes were not moving. When she looked up to the grotto she saw a bright light and a beautiful Lady in white above the rock in the grotto. She fell to her knees, reached into her pocket, took out her rosary and began to pray. Looking up Bernadette saw the Lady with yellow roses at her feet and holding a rosary which she was praying. The Lady, Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes, asked Bernadette to continue to come to the grotto, and she did. Each time more people followed her there. On February 25 the Lady instructed Bernadette Soubirous to dig a hole and drink the water that came from it. Hundreds of people watched as she drank the muddy water from the hole. By the next day water flowed from the hole that she had dug. And, on March 1, a woman drank water from the new spring and was cured of paralysis. Multiple miracles occurred as people continued to drink water from the new spring where the Lady had Bernadette dig the hole. Our Lady continued to appear to Bernadette at the grotto for a total of 18 times and numerous miraculous healings were reported. The request of Our Lady of Lourdes to Bernadette and all the pilgrims was to offer penance and   pray the rosary.  A shrine and a basilica have been constructed at the grotto and millions of pilgrims visit this shrine in France; many in search of the miracle of Lourdes. Thousands of miraculous spiritual and physical healings have been reported. Lourdes is the most visited shrine in the world.

Reflection: It is fitting that we celebrate this special feast and honor Mary’s love and grace under this marvelous title of Our Lady of Lourdes. Let us follow the request of Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes and offer penance and pray the rosary for increased holiness and the salvation of souls.

Bio: Marianne Buzzelli is a Catholic writer and owner of Holy Cross Necklaces which sells fine cross necklaces, saint medals, rosaries, Christian rings, religious statuary, Catholic books, and more.

 

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Prayer of Consecration to Mary

We come to Mary, the Mother of Our Dear Lord Jesus to lead us to her son.

Saints and holy people consecrate their lives to Mary.

Here is a simple, yet beautiful Prayer to say to Mary as you begin each day:

Mary asks us to do penance and pray, especially the rosary, daily.

 

 

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Our Lady of Ocotlan Statue and Apparition of Mary

In the spring of 1541, in the city of Tlaxcala, Mexico, an Indian named Juan Diego Bernardino witnessed the apparition of Our Lady of Ocotlan. This was just 10 years after the famous apparition of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico. It was during this time that small pox had struck this and surrounding villages in Mexico which killed many of the villagers.

On this day Juan Diego Bernardino was on his way to bring a jug of water from the river to his sick family. As he was on his way home from the river, he reached a hilltop and saw the vision of a most beautiful lady. It was our Lady. She was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. She asked him where he was going. He told her that he was taking water to his family that was dying of the plague.  She asked him to follow her and she would give him healing water that would cure all that would drink it.

Our Lady led Juan Diego down the hill in a pine grove to a water spring. Our Lady of Ocotlan then instructed him to give the water to the sick and anyone that drank it would be healed. She also told him to lead the Franciscan friars and that they would find an image of her in the pine grove. He was told to tell the friars that through this image she promised to send great blessings.  And, he was to tell the Franciscan friars to take the image and place it in the church of St. Lawrence. Juan Diego did as Our Lady instructed him. He gave the water to his family and they were cured. Other village people went to the spring and drank the water and were also miraculously healed.

Juan Diego later went to Franciscan friars and led them with a group of villagers to the pine grove. The trees of the forest were on fire. But, in the midst of the burning trees was one ocote tree that was untouched by the fire. Something directed the Franciscans to cut open the tree. When they cut open the tree with a hatchet they discovered the image of Mary carved in the wood. How glorious! All of the witnesses fell to their knees in awe and honor. The Franciscans and villagers then removed the image of Our Lady of Ocotlan and lifted it on their shoulders as they processed it to the Church of St. Lawrence. The image was placed on the altar of the church where it remains today. The statue of Our Lady of Ocotlan is carved from one piece of wood from the ocote tree. It is 5 feet tall.

A Shrine of Our Lady of Ocotlan was constructed. Pope Clement XIII declared a feast day to celebrate Our Lady of Ocotlan to be celebrated on a Sunday in July. The faithful Christians, villagers, and pilgrims honor this apparition with a procession with Our Lady of Ocotlan Statue on their shoulders as it occurred on the first procession when the image was first revealed centuries ago.

What a great opportunity to honor and celebrate Mary’s great love and blessings as you display a beautiful Our Lady of Ocotlan Statue in your own home.

 

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Mary the Mother of God – Theotokos


From our early Church father, Bishop Cyril of Alexandria:

The Catholic Church affirmed the declaration of Mary to be the Mother of God (Theotokos in Greek) at the Third Ecumenical Council at Ephesus in 431 AD. Cyril of Alexandria, an early Church Father, elaborated on the rightful recognition of Mary as Mother of God in his second letter to Nestorius of Constantinople. He stated: “”the holy fathers… have ventured to call the holy Virgin Theotokos, not as though the nature of the [W]ord or his divinity received the beginning of their existence from the holy Virgin, but because from her was born his holy body, rationally endowed with a soul, with which [body] the [W]ord was united according to the hypostasis, and is said to have been begotten according to the flesh”. (Hypostasis refers to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity: three distinct persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in one God).  Since Mary is Jesus’ mother, and Jesus is God, the second person of the Blessed Trinity,  it must be concluded that she is also the Mother of God.

From the The Catechism:

The Catechism of The Catholic Church defines Mary’s divine motherhood in paragraph 495, “Called in the Gospels “the mother of Jesus”, Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as “the mother of my Lord”. In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father’s eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly “Mother of God” (Theotokos).”

From Pope John Paul II:

Pope John Paul II in his Wednesday audience on September 13, 1995 gave this further catechesis in “Mary Is The Virgin Mother of God”. He stated “In Lumen gentium, the Council states that “joined to Christ the head and in communion with all his saints, the faithful must in the first place reverence the memory ‘of the glorious ever Virgin Mary, Mother of our God and Lord Jesus Christ'” (n. 52). The conciliar Constitution uses these terms from the Roman Canon of the Mass, thereby stressing how faith in the divine motherhood of Mary has been present in Christian thought since the first centuries.”

Reflection: We honor Mary as the mother of Jesus and mother of God in our daily prayer of intercession. We come to her as our mother to ask her to help us on our path to holiness. We seek to know and love Jesus with a heart as meek, mild, humble, and kind as the heart of The Blessed Mother of God. What a wonderful way to pray to Mary to intercede with her dear Son, Jesus, as we look upon her loving face personified in this beautiful Mary and Child statue.

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Honor Jesus, Mary, and Joseph on the Feast of the Holy Family

 

Today we celebrate the feast of The Holy Family in which we honor Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.

Veneration of the Holy Family was recorded in history to have begun in the 17th century by a Canadian bishop, Francois de Laval. And, the feast day was dedicated to the Holy Family in 1893 by Pope Leo XII.

It is most fitting that we honor the most perfect of all families and to do so within the octave of the birth of Jesus, our Savior. We honor Mary who gives us the example of perfect love and whose heart is most like that of her Son, Jesus – meek and humble. We honor Joseph, who was chosen by God to be the foster father of Jesus because of his tender heart and great humility. Both Mary and Joseph, with great faith, responded to their call to be the parents of Jesus and to guide Him during his childhood.

Reflection: Let us pray to The Holy Family and ask them to guide our family and keep us on the path to holiness.  Dear Holy Family help us love one another more, and help us to build peace within our family.  And, Jesus, let us see You in each other everyday.  And, we can express our devotion and honor for the Holy Family as we display this beautiful Holy Family Figurine.

 

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Honor Mary With the Legion of Mary and Pray The Rosary

The Legion of Mary is a lay apostolate dedicated to serving the Church and performing a corporal work of mercy focusing on the marginalized of society – the poor, elderly, sick, homeless. Members of the legion are required to perform such an act of service once a week. In doing so The Legion of Mary provides for the spiritual and social welfare of the needy members of the church. This lay apostolic association looks to Mary as Mediatrix of all graces through the Holy Spirit based on the teachings of St. Louis de Montfort who encouraged devotion to Jesus through Mary and total consecration to Mary.

The legion was founded 90 years ago in Dublin, Ireland by Frank Duff. It has members in over 170 countries around the world with several million members. Members of the Legion of Mary are guided by clergy who act as spiritual directors. The legion is administered by means of local, regional, and national level councils. The local unit of the legion is called a praesidium which is usually based within a Catholic Church parish. Meetings are held weekly. During the meeting members pray with focus on the prayer of the rosary, and discuss recent apostolic work and future needs of the community. The heart of the legion is its focus on Mary as our intercessor. The missionary and evangelization of the legion is carried out therefore, by prayer and works of service to the Church and community.

For Reflection: Mary, Our Blessed Mother is the most perfect of all intercessors to Jesus on our behalf. It is fitting therefore, to honor her and seek her aide often in prayer. And, Mary herself has asked us to come to her in our time of need with humility and sacrifice as we pray the rosary. What a glorious way to express our devotion and love for Mary as we pray the mysteries and life of Jesus on a beautiful gold rosary.

 

 

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Mary – Our Lady of Grace

 The History and Origin of The Title of Mary As Our Lady of Grace

– by Marianne Buzzelli

“Our Lady of Grace” is one of the most popular titles given to The Blessed Mother. And, this title is rightly given to Mary as we hear it proclaimed in the Gospel of Luke when the Angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will be the mother of the Messiah. Gabriel says “Hail Mary, full of grace” (the Latin translation for “gratia plena”) or “Hail Mary, one completely graced” (the Greek translation for “kecharitomene”.)

We acknowledge this title for Mary as she was the mother of Jesus, Our Savior and the source of all grace. In this role as mother of Jesus, Mary carried the source of all grace in her womb. It therefore, reasonably follows that Mary would continue to be the vessel or mediator of grace from Jesus to us, her children.

The image and title of Mary as “Our Lady of Grace” originated with the appearance of Mary to St. Catherine of Laboure in France in 1830. Mary appeared with bright beaming rays coming from her fingers. Mary told St. Catherine that the rays symbolize the graces which flow from her to any of her children on earth that ask for them. Mary asked St. Catherine to have a medal made with this image of her on it. And, anyone that would wear this medal with great faith would be granted special graces. The medal is called “The Miraculous Medal”.  The Blessed Mother Mary promised great graces to those that pray the rosary, attend Mass, and go to confession frequently.

For Reflection: Our Blessed Mother Mary wants to bring all of her children to heaven. She intercedes for us in prayer to her Son, Jesus. Mary’s intercession for us is a wonderful gift, as are the graces she offers to all that love Jesus and come in faith asking her for grace. Let us respond to the request of Mary to pray the rosary with a beautiful Our Lady of Grace Rosary.

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Prayer to Mary to Place Everyone in Her Immaculate Heart

My dear Blessed Mother

I place myself in the beautiful garden of your Immaculate Heart,

With all my family, relatives, friends,

And everyone I work with, play with, pray with,

And everyone you have placed in my life that I have spiritually adopted.

Please protect us from the evil one.

And, let us have health of mind, body, and soul,

That we may be united with Jesus, God Our Father, and The Holy Spirit.

I ask this and all things in Jesus’ name.  Amen.

What a wonderful way to express your love and devotion to Mary,

Our dear Blessed Mother as you wear this beautiful Gold and Blue Miraculous Medal.

 

 

 

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