Monthly Archives: April 2020

WHY IS MAY THE MONTH OF MARY?

THROUGHOUT THE MONTH OF MAY we shall be sharing Marian readings focused on Mary, Mother Of God.

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WHY IS MAY THE MONTH OF MARY?

There are many different factors that contributed to May the month of Mary. First of all, in Ancient Greece and Rome, the month of may was dedicated to pagan goddesses connected to fertility and springtime (Artemis and Flora respectively)

For centuries, the Catholic Church has set aside the entire month of May to honour Mary, Mother of God. Not just a day in May, mind you, but the entire month. Not because she is a goddess but because she is the Mother of God, and our Mother.

It was during the middle Ages (11 Century), that the idea of giving the month of may to Mary began with an old tradition or spiritual exercise known as “Tricesimum”, or “Thirty-Day Devotion to Mary”. Also called, “Mary’s Month,” the event was held from August 15 to September 14 and was later changed to may by Pope Pius VII.

In 1945, Pope Pius XII solidified May as a Marian month after establishing the feast of the Queenship of Mary on May 31st. After the Second Vatican Council, this feast was moved to August 22, while May 31st became the feast of the Visitation of Mary.

The month of May is one rich in tradition and a beautiful time of the year to honor our heavenly Mother. During the month of may, special devotion to Mary were organised and the practice spread everywhere.

Also, in Rome towards the end of the eighteenth century, one fine evening in May. A child from a poor family gathered his companions around him and led them to a statue of Mary, before which a lamp was burning, as is the custom in that city. These fresh young voices sang the Litany of our Lady. The next day, this little children were followed by other children, again gathered at the feet of the Mother of God. Next came their mothers, to join the little assembly. Soon, other groups were formed, and the devotion rapidly became popular. Day after day the number increases and becomes greater as they return home. Many saw in these growing practices the hand of God and Our Lady, and they cooperated with the designs of Providence by approving and promoting this new devotion, as a public and solemn act of reparation. The Month of Mary was founded.

“This is the month in which, in the churches and individual homes, the most affectionate and fervent homage of prayers and devotions from the hearts of Christians are raised to Mary the Mother of God. It is also the month in which from Her throne descend upon us the most generous and abundant graces from God.”

In our own times, we Catholics, especially Marian devotee wanting to be close to Mary always, and to offer her special presents in May: in most Catholic churches ( even in many Catholic homes) a ” May Altar” is erected with a statue or picture of Jesus and Mary, flowers and candles. The Altar stands from May 1 to 31 as a reminder of Mary’s importance in the life of the Church and in our own lives as well.

After the second Vatican council in the year 1965, Pope Paul VI wrote about the importance of Mary’s intercession for all the world, explaining that those who encounter the Mother of God encounter Her Son, Jesus Christ. And Pope Francis in his letter for the month of May 2020 said “Contemplating the face of Christ with the heart of Mary our Mother will make us even more united as a spiritual family and will help us overcome this time of trial.” Let us remember to pray the two beautiful prayer to Our Lady given by Pope Francis at the end of our daily Rosary.

We fly to your protection, O Holy Mother of God. Do not despise our petitions in our necessities, but deliver us always from every danger, O Glorious and Blessed Virgin. Amen.

HE WHO FINDS MARY FINDS LIFE

God wishes to reveal Mary, his masterpiece, and make her more known in these latter times:

(1) Because she kept herself hidden in this world and in her great humility considered herself lower than dust, having obtained from God, his apostles and evangelists the favor of being made known.

(2) Because, as Mary is not only God’s masterpiece of glory in heaven, but also his masterpiece of grace on earth, he wishes to be glorified and praised because of her by those living upon earth.

(3) Since she is the dawn which precedes and discloses the Sun of Justice Jesus Christ, she must be known and acknowledged so that Jesus may be known and acknowledged.

(4) As she was the way by which Jesus first came to us, she will again be the way by which he will come to us the second time though not in the same manner.

(5) Since she is the sure means, the direct and immaculate way to Jesus and the perfect guide to him, it is through her that souls who are to shine forth in sanctity must find him. He who finds Mary finds life, that is, Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth and the life. But no one can find Mary who does not look for her. No one can look for her who does not know her, for no one seeks or desires something unknown. Mary then must be better known than ever for the deeper understanding and the greater glory of the Blessed Trinity.

(6) In these latter times Mary must shine forth more than ever in mercy, power and grace; in mercy, to bring back and welcome lovingly the poor sinners and wanderers who are to be converted and return to the Catholic Church; in power, to combat the enemies of God who will rise up menacingly to seduce and crush by promises and threats all those who oppose them; finally, she must shine forth in grace to inspire and support the valiant soldiers and loyal servants of Jesus Christ who are fighting for his cause.

(7) Lastly, Mary must become as terrible as an army in battle array to the devil and his followers, especially in these latter times. For Satan, knowing that he has little time – even less now than ever – to destroy souls, intensifies his efforts and his onslaughts every day. He will not hesitate to stir up savage persecutions and set treacherous snares for Mary’s faithful servants and children whom he finds more difficult to overcome than others.

In Treatise on True Devotion to Mary (50)

By Saint Louis-Marie-Grignion de Montfort (1673-1716),

WRAPPED UP IN MARY

“The more we honour the Blessed Virgin, the more we honour Jesus Christ, because we honour Mary only that we may the more perfectly honour Jesus, since we go to Her only as the way by which we are to find the end we are seeking, which is Jesus.” -St. Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort.

Today is a special feast day, the memorial of St. Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort. St. Louis was born in 1673, and became a Dominican priest who loved the poor, lived humbly and had a great devotion to Our Lady. He wrote so many books . One of them is “True Devotion to Mary” in which he shared his understanding of Our Lady’s role in the latter days, but it was not published before his death. It was found many years later, in 1842 and after much study, was published in 1853.

He wrote “True Devotion to Mary” to explain Mary’s role in the coming of Christ. One of the things that he said was that Mary would become present to souls, who would become united to her in love. These souls would glorify God in the last days. Here is an excerpt from “True Devotion to Mary” in which he describes those souls who loved Mary: Communication of the soul and spirit of Mary.
217. “The soul of Mary will be communicated to you to glorify the Lord. Her spirit will take the place of yours to rejoice in God, her Savior, but only if you are faithful to the practices of this devotion. As St. Ambrose says, “May the soul of Mary be in each one of us to glorify the Lord! May the spirit of Mary be in each one of us to rejoice in God!” “When will that happy day come,” asks a saintly man of our own day whose life was completely wrapped up in Mary, “when God’s Mother is enthroned in men’s hearts as Queen, subjecting them to the dominion of her great and princely Son? When will souls breathe Mary as the body breathes air?” When that time comes wonderful things will happen on earth. The Holy Spirit, finding his dear Spouse present again in souls, will come down into them with great power. He will fill them with his gifts, especially wisdom, by which they will produce wonders of grace. My dear friend, when will that happy time come, that age of Mary, when many souls, chosen by Mary and given her by the most High God, will hide themselves completely in the depths of her soul, becoming living copies of her, loving and glorifying Jesus? That day will dawn only when the devotion I teach is understood and put into practice. Ut adveniat regnum tuum, adveniat regnum Mariae: “Lord, that your kingdom may come, may the reign of Mary come!” (# 217 – True Devotion to Mary. St. Louis de Montfort)

“When will that happy day come?” I believe that that day has come! Our Lady has come to fill us with her soul and spirit, by teaching us how to love her Son and receive the Holy Spirit. In fact, we are being “wrapped up in Mary” just like that saintly man St. Louis described. We are those souls who breathe Mary just as the body breaths air!! This is the age of Mary!! She has come down to us and she has chosen us to be living copies of herself.

IT’S NOT ALWAYS EASY

IT’S NOT ALWAYS EASY
By Rev Fr Benjamin-Maria Igbinovia

It’s not always easy to see others loved more than I,
It’s not always easy to see others esteemed more than I,
It’s not always easy to accept the opinion that others should increase and I decrease,
It’s not always easy to smile and be nice when I am called to sacrifice,
It’s not always easy to put others first and I second or last,
It’s not always easy to see others chosen and I set aside,
It’s not always easy to smile when others are praised and I unnoticed,
It’s not always easy to see that others are preferred to me in everything,
It’s not always easy to do the Father’s will,
It’s not always easy to fight the good fight.
But it is always good, it is always right and it is always easy provided I am what I should be,
The image and likeness of God.
Lord Jesus Christ, grant me the grace to do your will and not my will, Let your will be done. Amen

DIVINE MERCY WINS: FAILURE IS NOT FINAL

“`_Pls Read n ponder_
“`
**UR FAILURE IS NOT UR FINAL.*
_Not when it comes to Jesus_*

A relatively young priest is in a hospital visiting some of his parishioners. He is walking down the hallway, and a nun stops him and says, “Father, can you go into this room? *There’s a man on his deathbed. He’s been here for days. We’ve asked priests to go in, but he chases everyone away.*
*_He doesn’t want to talk about Jesus. But he’s dying._*
*Could you please visit him?”*

The priest goes in and introduces himself to the patient. The guy erupts and starts cursing at him. He is so angry: “I don’t want anything to do with you. Get out of here!”
The priest says, “Okay” and goes out in
*The nun is still there. She says, “Could you go back in?*
_The priest replies, “He doesn’t want anything I have to say”_
*Just give it another chance,” pleads the nun* .
The priest reluctantly reenters the room. “I’m not going to ask if you want to go to confession. I’m not going to ask if you want Holy Communion. But is it okay if I just sit here next to your bed and pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy?”
*The old man replies, “I don’t care. Do whatever you want.”*

_The priest sits down and begins softly praying the words of the Chaplet:_
“ *For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.* For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world….”

*Suddenly the man bursts out, “Stop it!”*

_Startled, the priest looks up and asks, “Why?”_
*“Because there is no mercy for me!”*
_“Why do you think there is no mercy for you?” asks the priest_ .
*“It doesn’t matter,” responds the old man* .

_But the priest persists: “Why do you think there is no mercy for you?”_
“I’ll tell you… *Twenty-five years ago, I was working for the railroad. My job was to lower the crossing guard arm when a train would come to prevent cars from going on the tracks. But one night I was drunk. I didn’t lower the crossing guard arm, and a couple and their three young children were on the tracks as a train came, and they were all instantly killed. That was my fault. So there is no mercy for me. I have failed. It is over.”*

_The priest just sits there staring at the rosary in his hands. Finally he asks, “Where was this?”_
The man tells him the name of the Polish town.
*The priest looks up and says, “Twenty-five years ago, my mom and my dad were taking my little siblings on a trip. I couldn’t go with them. They were driving through this small town. For some reason the railroad crossing guard arm wasn’t lowered. As they were crossing the tracks, a train came and killed them all. I lost my whole family that night.”*

_The priest gazes intently into the man’s face, and he says, “My brother, God forgives you. Not only that, I forgive you.”_

*The man realizes that God’s mercy is for him.*

_The priest asks, “Would you let me hear your confession and give you the Eucharist?”_
*The man makes his confession and receives Holy Communion.*
*TWO DAYS LATER HE DIES.* _Mercy wins._ *His failure was not final.*

The story goes on. It’s kind of cool. After giving the man Communion, the priest goes into the hallway in search of the nun. He can’t find her. The administration tells him, “We don’t employ any nuns at this hospital.”

For years the priest does not know who this nun is. Eventually he goes to the town of Vilnius, which is where Saint Faustina lived. He goes to the convent to say Mass for the nuns there. He sees a painting on the wall of Saint Faustina, and he says, “I’ve met that nun a couple of years ago.”
“No, Father, you did not,” replies one of the nuns. “She’s been dead since 1938.”

*The priest then realizes it was Sister Faustina who told him to go into the patient’s room, told him to go back again into that room.*

_*Failure is not final. Not when it comes to Jesus.*_

Jesus, is no longer dead. He is risen, and He is ruling over His creation using His almighty power to direct everything in the world to get you safely to that eternal life.
Peace be with you.
Amen

God bless us all🙏🏻

#PRAYER TO OUR LADY OF VICTORY

O sweet and gentle Lady, Immaculate Mother of God, we beg you to be our Mother now and all the days of our life. Shield us Mother Mary with your holy mantle that nothing of the enemy may harm or molest us. Ask your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ to spare us from any calamities that will cause our life misery. Amen
1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary, 1 Glory be

THE STORY OF A SATANIC PRIEST CONVERTED TO BECOME A CATHOLIC BLESSED BECAUSE OF ROSARY

Blessed Bartolo Longo was born to a devout Catholic family in 1841. His formative years were a tumultuous time for Italy, and he was swept up in nationalistic fervor. Many of his college professors were actually ex-priests who took a dim view of the Catholic Church.

Bartolo started to dabble in the occult. He eventually embraced Satanism. He was consecrated a Satanic priest and promised his soul to a demon. To his family’s dismay, he preached against the Catholic Faith and presided over blasphemous rituals.

His mental and physical state deteriorated until he couldn’t deny that he needed help. He began to talk to a Catholic professor from his university, who referred him to a Dominican priest. The priest met with Bartolo for three weeks before he was able to offer absolution.

Bartolo became a third-order Dominican, but he was still plagued with guilt about his past life. He was especially traumatized by the experience of promising his soul to a demon and doubted that God would accept him after having done something so heinous. These thoughts nearly drove him to suicide. But then he remembered a homily he had heard on the power of the Rosary.

“Falling to my knees, I exclaimed: ‘If your words are true that he who propagates your Rosary will be saved, I shall reach salvation because I shall not leave this earth without propagating your Rosary,” he said

Bartolo spent the rest of his life promoting the Rosary and surrendering his problems through it. He even helped build the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary in Pompeii. He wrote extensively on the Rosary, and his writings influenced Pope St. John Paul II’s decision to add the Luminous Mysteries.

Mary: Model of Faith and Hope

Have you considered her role in the first disciples’ faith?
Our Lady is the intercessor par excellence, but sometimes it helps to consider her maternal intervention in our specific needs. For example, if we are feeling weak in faith, or hoping to bring our loved ones to faith, we should turn to Mary.

Why?

Well, consider this reflection from St. Josemaria Escriva:

If our faith is weak, we should turn to Mary. Because of the miracle at the marriage feast of Cana, which Christ performed at his Mother’s request, his disciples learned to believe in him (John 2:11). Our Mother is always interceding with her Son so that he may attend to ur needs and show himself to us, so that we can cry out, “You are the Son of God.”

It was through the Virgin Mary that Jesus’ first followers came to believe in Him. Why should it be any different now?

So, when plagued by doubts, or when your faith simply doesn’t seem to be enough to confront the mountains before you, call on Our Lady!

This reflection is taken from Holy Rosary.