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Reflections: Mary, Our Mother Sctn. (Misc.)

The Blessed Virgin Mary

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Mary, Our Mother Sctn.:


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Also See: Blessed Virgin Mary (Topic Page)

"Thine arms carried the treasure of the world."

"[T]hrough [Mary] was given to us the gift of life." (Sequence)

"Our Lord is revealed to St. John by the voice of Mary."

"He willed us to have all through Mary." (St. Bernard, Doctor of the Church)

"For Mary [is] our sister, inasmuch as we are all from Adam." (St. Athanasius, Doctor of the Church, c. 370 A.D.)

"Heart of stone! Can I behold Mary's love and still be cold?" (St. Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church) 

"God, the Blessed Virgin, the angels and saints are about our path; they are at our side and see all we do." (St. John Vianney)

"Jesus, Mary, The Cross: I want no other friends but these." (St. Bernadette Soubirous)

"How can I love thy Son, Sweet Mother! If I love not thee." (Faber)

"You see that Mary doubted not but believed, and therefore the fruit of faith followed." (St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church)

"God wisheth her to be the beginning of all good things" (St. Irenaeus)

"In her hand are the treasures of the mercies of the Lord" (St. John Damascene, Doctor of the Church)

"Before Jesus ever spoke about Himself and His mission, Mary spoke of Him to those who came to visit the Child." (Pope John Paul II)

"God, looking upon what Mary believed was her nothingness, once more created a world out of 'nothing.'" (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"For of all generations she alone has risen as a virgin pure in body and in spirit; and she alone bears Him who bears all things on His word." (St. Gregory Thaumaturgos) 

"Be a guide to Christ for us, O Mary. Be for us a Morning Star that shines in the heavens of eternal Wisdom, above the horizons of our human world. Amen." (Pope John Paul II)

"Though she was the Mother of the Lord, yet she desired to learn the precepts of the Lord, and she who brought forth God, yet desired to know God." (St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church, 4th century A.D.)

"As sailors are guided by a star to the port, so Christians are guided to heaven by Mary." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"I'll not add another word, except to urge you to be faithful and humble. Keep the great Mother of God before your mind. The more she was exalted, the more she humbled herself." [St. Pio of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio)]

"The example of the Apostles should be borne in mind who, awaiting the supreme gift of the Paraclete promised to them, persevered unanimously in prayer with the Mother of Jesus." (Pope Leo XIII)

"Let all Christians, therefore, glory in being subjects of the Virgin Mother of God, who, while wielding royal power, is on fire with a mother's love." (Pope Pius XII, "Ad Caeli Reginam", 1954 A.D.)

"[F]or we must take the very greatest care, even should it cost us our life, that no one lessen in any way the honor of Our Lady." (St. Bonaventure, Doctor of the Church) [Reminder: We are not liable for any occurrence which may result from using this site.]

"[We are confident] that the Immaculate Virgin, Daughter of the Father, Mother of the Word, and Spouse of the Holy Ghost, will obtain for you from the most holy and adorable Trinity better days" (Pope St. Pius X, "Une Fois Encore", 1907)

"Even now as the King is preparing for his judgement; the day, terrible beyond all thought, is at hand; and who will be our refuge? The Virgin Mother, the hope of all. May she pray to her Son for us!" ('Canticle of the Last Judgment')

"Our heart is full of desire for those wondrous fruits which, on many occasions, the devotion of Catholic people to Mary has brought forth; already We enjoy them deeply and abundantly in anticipation." (Pope Leo XIII, "Octobri Mense", 1891)

"The water of baptism is like the Virgin's womb; for the same Holy Spirit fills the font, Who filled the Virgin, that the sin, which that sacred conception overthrew, may be taken away by this mystical washing." (Pope St. Leo I the Great, Doctor of the Church)

"Every Christian land is a Marian land; there is not a nation redeemed in the blood of Christ which does not glory in proclaiming Mary its Mother and Patroness." (Pope Pius XII, "Le Pelerinage De Lourdes", 1957 A.D.)

"You, beloved Mother of God's Son! You, Virgin Spouse of the Holy Spirit! You, who dwell in the tabernacle of the Most Holy Trinity! Truly, you will never cease to be in the very heart of the Divine Plan." (Pope John Paul II)

"The Father of all is indeed one, and also is the universal Word, and the Holy Spirit is the same everywhere; and only one is the Virgin Mother. I love to call her the Church…She is at once both Virgin and Mother; as a Virgin, undefiled; as a Mother, full of love." (St. Clement of Alexandria, c. 202 A.D.)

"In her, the destinies of the world were to be reversed, and [Satan's] head bruised. In her was bestowed the greatest honor ever put upon any individual of our fallen race. God was taking upon Him her flesh and humbling Himself to be called her offspring - such is the deep mystery!" (Cardinal Newman)

"May the very powerful Mother of God, moved by the prayers of so many of her sons, obtain from her only Son - let us all beseech her - that those who have miserably wandered from the path of truth and virtue may, with new fervor, find it again." (Pope Pius XII)

"Jesus is to have no earthly father; He will therefore receive more from His mother than could any other son. In return, no creature could be so like to Jesus in the order of grace, as she whom He thus deigns to resemble in the order of nature" (Liturgical Year)

"O God, who by the fruitful Virginity of the Blessed Virgin Mary hast given to mankind the rewards of eternal salvation; grant, we beseech thee, that we may experience her intercession, by whom we received the Author of Life, our Lord Jesus Christ, thy Son. Amen." ('Anthem to the Blessed Virgin')

"[John the Baptist] was not filled with the Spirit, until [Mary] stood near him who bore Christ in her womb. Then indeed he was both filled with the Spirit, and leaping imparted the grace to his mother" [Origen ("the greatest scholar of Christian antiquity" - although he would eventually be excommunicated and be regarded as a heretic), 3rd century A.D.]

"To the beloved Mother of God, mediatrix of heavenly graces, we entrust the priests of the whole world in order that, through her intercession, God will vouchsafe a generous outpouring of his spirit which will move all ministers of the altar to holiness and, through their ministry, will spiritually renew the face of the earth." (Pope Pius XII)

"Let all the Faithful of Christ take the Angelic Doctor [St. Thomas Aquinas] as a model of devotion to the august Queen of Heaven, for it was his custom often to repeat the 'Hail Mary' and to inscribe the sweet Name upon his pages, and let them ask the Doctor of the Eucharist himself to inspire them with love for the divine Sacrament." (Pope Pius XI, "Studiorum Ducem", 1923)

"So it was then, lest the virgin should despair of being able to bear a son, that she received the example of one both old and barren about to bring forth, in order that she might learn that all things are possible with God, even those which seem to be opposed to the order of nature. Whence it follows, 'For there shall be no word impossible with God'." (St. Bede the Venerable, Doctor of the Church)

"Ask the Immaculate Virgin to obtain for you a childlike spirit towards God as she prayed in her Magnificat, her face turned toward the Almighty with gratitude and joy. May she teach you docility as she did at Cana when she advised the servants to do all that her divine Son might tell them. Last of all, may she obtain for you a far-reaching fraternal and apostolic charity, as she obtained it by her prayer in the midst of the first Christians gathered at the Cenacle." (Pope Pius XII)

"Remark, by the by, that this writer does not scruple to address these words to Mary: 'Save us, we perish'; as does a certain author already noticed, and who says, that we cannot ask Mary to save us, as this belongs to God alone. But since a culprit condemned to death can beg a royal favorite to save him by interceding with the king that his life may be spared, why cannot we ask the Mother of God to save us by obtaining us eternal life?" (St. Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church)

"It is in Mary, therefore, that the Church of Christ indicates the example of the worthiest way of receiving in our spirits the Word of God, in accordance with the luminous sentence of St. Augustine: 'Mary was therefore more blessed in receiving the faith in Christ than in conceiving the flesh of Christ. Accordingly, maternal consanguinity would not have benefited Mary if she had not felt more fortunate in having Christ in her heart then in her womb.'" (Pope Paul VI, 1967 A.D.)

"Mary, as soon as she was reassured by the voice of the Angel Gabriel that God had chosen her as the unblemished mother of His only-begotten Son, unhesitatingly gave her consent to a work which would have engaged all the energies of her fragile nature and declared: 'Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word.' From that moment, she consecrated all of herself to the service not only of the heavenly Father and of the Word Incarnate who had become her Son, but also to all mankind" (Pope Paul VI, 1967 A.D.)

"But thy blessed Mother, O Jesus, was not satisfied with adoring thee interiorly; her glad heart soon gave expression to its intense gratitude. She saw that thou hadst preferred her to all the daughters of her people, nay, to all generations both past and to come; her soul therefore thrilled with delight, and her lips could scarce give utterance to her immense joy. 'He that is mighty,' she said, 'hath done great things in me; he hath regarded the lowliness of his handmaid; and all generations shall call me blessed.'" ('Act of Thanksgiving for Advent')

"Had she not said from the very beginning: 'Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word' (Lk. 1:38)? Through faith Mary continued to hear and to ponder that word, in which there became ever clearer, in a way 'which surpasses knowledge' (Eph. 3:19), the self-revelation of the living God. Thus in a sense Mary as Mother became the first 'disciple' of her Son, the first to whom he seemed to say: 'Follow me,' even before he addressed this call to the Apostles or to anyone else (cf. Jn. 1:43)." (Pope John Paul II)

"We know that there is sure help in the maternal goodness of the Virgin, and We are very certain that We shall never vainly place Our trust in her. If, on innumerable occasions, she has displayed her power in aid of the Christian world, why should We doubt that she will now renew the assistance of her power and favor, if humble and constant prayers are offered up on all sides to her? Nay, We rather believe that her intervention will be the more marvelous as she has permitted Us to pray to her, for so long a time, with special appeals." (Pope Leo XIII, "Quamquam Pluries", 1889)

"There, in the second chapter [of the Gospel of St. John], we find these words: There was a marriage in Cana of Galilee, and the Mother of Jesus was there (Jn. ii 1). The sacred text goes on to say that Jesus also and his disciples were among the guests; but the Holy Spirit, who guided the Evangelist's hand, would have him first make mention of Mary. It was to teach us that this our blessed Mother extends her protection to those who enter upon the married life with worthy dispositions, that is, with such dispositions as to draw down upon themselves the blessing of her divine Son." (Gueranger)

"Our Lady: Such is the title which befits her in every way, as that of Our Lord beseems her Son; it is the doctrinal basis of that worship of hyperdulia which belongs to her alone. She is below her Son, whom she adores as we do; but above all God's servants, both angels and men, inasmuch as she is His Mother. At the name of Jesus every knee is bent; at the name of Mary every head is bowed. And although the former is the only name whereby we may be saved; yet, as the Son can never be separated from His Mother, heaven unites their two names in hymns of praise, earth in its confidence, hell in its fear and hatred." (Liturgical Year)

"Furthermore, it is well to bear in mind that Mary's eminent sanctity was not only a singular gift of divine liberality. It was also the fruit of the continuous and generous cooperation of her free will in the inner motions of the Holy Spirit. It is because of the perfect harmony between divine grace and the activity of her human nature that the Virgin rendered supreme glory to the Most Holy Trinity and became the illustrious ornament of the Church, which thus greets her in sacred Liturgy: 'You are the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the honor of our people.'" (Pope Paul VI, 1967 A.D.) 

"As she became the Refuge of Sinners by knowing what it is to lose God and then find Him, so He became the Redeemer of sinners by knowing the deliberateness, the willfulness, the resoluteness of those who wound the ones they love! She felt the creature losing the Creator; He felt the Creator losing the creature. Mary lost Jesus only in mystical darkness of the soul, not in the moral blackness of an evil heart. Her loss was a veiling of His face, not a flight. But she does teach us that, when we lose God, we must not wait for Him to come back. We must go out in search of Him; and, to the joy of every sinner, she knows where He can be found!" (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"It has always been the habit of Catholics in danger and in troublous times to fly for refuge to Mary, and to seek for peace in her maternal goodness; showing that the Catholic Church has always, and with justice, put all her hope and trust in the Mother of God. And truly the Immaculate Virgin, chosen to be the Mother of God and thereby associated with Him in the work of man's salvation, has a favor and power with her Son greater than any human or angelic creature has ever obtained, or ever can gain. And, as it is her greatest pleasure to grant her help and comfort to those who seek her, it cannot be doubted that she would deign, and even be anxious, to receive the aspirations of the universal Church." (Pope Leo XIII, "Supremi Apostolatus Officio", 1883 A.D.)

"It pleased Christ to take upon Himself the Son of Man, and to become thereby our Brother, in order that His mercy to us might be shown most openly; for 'it behooved him in all things to be made like unto his brethren that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest before God.' Likewise because Mary was chosen to be the Mother of Christ, our Lord and our Brother, the unique prerogative was given her above all other mothers to show her mercy to us and to pour it out upon us. Besides, as we are indebted to Christ for sharing in some way with us the right, which is peculiarly His own, of calling God our Father and possessing Him as such, we are in like manner indebted to Him for His loving generosity in sharing with us the right to call Mary our Mother and to cherish her as such." (Pope Leo XIII, "Magnae Dei Matris", 1892 A.D.)

"And as in the times of the Crusades, in all Europe there was raised one voice of the people, one supplication; so today, in all the world, the cities, and even the smallest villages, united with courage and strength, with filial and constant insistence, the people seek to obtain from the great Mother of God the defeat of the enemies of Christian and human civilization, to the end that true peace may shine again over tired and erring men. If, then, all will do this with due disposition, with great faith and with fervent piety, it is right to hope that as in the past, so in our day, the Blessed Virgin will obtain from her divine Son that the waves of the present tempests be calmed and that a brilliant victory crown this rivalry of Christians in prayer." (Pope Pius XI, "Ingravescentibus Malis", 1937)

"No other reason is needed that that of a Divine faith which, by a powerful and most pleasant impulse, persuades us towards Mary. Nothing is more natural, nothing more desirable than to seek a refuge in the protection and in the loyalty of her to whom we may confess our designs and our actions, our innocence and our repentance, our torments and our joys, our prayers and our desires - all our affairs. All men, moreover, are filled with the hope and confidence that petitions which might be received with less favor from the lips of unworthy men, God will accept when they are recommended by the most Holy Mother, and will grant with all favors. The truth and the sweetness of these thoughts bring to the soul an unspeakable comfort; but they inspire all the more compassion for those who, being without Divine faith, honor not Mary and have her not for their mother" (Pope Leo XIII, "Octobri Mense", 1891)

"The Virgin, whether she understood or whether she could not yet understand, equally laid up all things in her heart for reflection and diligent examination. Hence it follows, And, his mother laid up all these things...(Lk. 2:51) Mark the wisest of mothers, Mary the mother of true wisdom, becomes the scholar or disciple of the Child. For she yielded to Him not as to a boy, nor as to a man, but as unto God. Further, she pondered upon both His divine words and works, so that nothing that was said or done by Him was lost upon her, but as the Word itself was before in her womb, so now she conceived the ways and words of the same, and in a manner nursed them in her heart. And while indeed she thought upon one thing at the time, another she wanted to be more clearly revealed to her; and this was her constant rule and law through her whole life." (St. Bede the Venerable, Doctor of the Church)

"As time went on, it became more and more evident how deserving of love and honor was she whom God Himself was the first to love, and loved so much more than any other that, after elevating her high above all the rest of His creation and adorning her with His richest gifts, He made her His Mother. The many and splendid proofs of her bounty and beneficence toward us, which We remember with deep gratitude and which move Us to tears, still further encourage and strongly inflame Our filial reverence for her. Throughout the many dreadful events of every kind which the times have brought to pass, always with her have We sought refuge, always to her have We lifted up pleading and confident eyes. And in all the hopes and fears, the joys and sorrows, that We confided to her, the thought was constantly before Us to ask her to assist Us at all times as Our gracious Mother and to obtain this greatest of favors: that We might be able, in return, to show her the heart of a most devoted son." (Pope Leo XIII, "Magnae Dei Matris", 1892 A.D.)

"The Mother of that Son, therefore, mindful of what has been told her at the Annunciation and in subsequent events, bears within herself the radical 'newness' of faith: the beginning of the New Covenant. This is the beginning of the Gospel, the joyful Good News. However, it is not difficult to see in that beginning a particular heaviness of heart, linked with a sort of 'night of faith' - to use the words of St. John of the Cross - a kind of 'veil' through which one has to draw near to the Invisible One and to live in intimacy with the mystery. And this is the way that Mary, for many years, lived in intimacy with the mystery of her Son, and went forward in her 'pilgrimage of faith,' while Jesus 'increased in wisdom...and in favor with God and man' (Lk. 2:52). God's predilection for him was manifested ever more clearly to people's eyes. The first human creature thus permitted to discover Christ was Mary, who lived with Joseph in the same house at Nazareth." (Pope John Paul II)

"For can anyone fail to see that there is no surer or more direct road than by Mary for uniting all mankind in Christ and obtaining through Him the perfect adoption of sons, that we may be holy and immaculate in the sight of God? For if to Mary it was truly said: 'Blessed art thou who hast believed because in thee shall be fulfilled the things that have been told thee by the Lord' (Luke i., 45); or in other words, that she would conceive and bring forth the Son of God and if she did receive in her breast Him who is by nature Truth itself in order that 'He, generated in a new order and with a new nativity, though invisible in Himself, might become visible in our flesh' (St. Leo the Great, Ser. 2, De Nativ. Dom.): the Son of God made man, being the 'author and consummator of our faith'; it surely follows that His Mother most holy should be recognized as participating in the divine mysteries and as being in a manner the guardian of them, and that upon her as upon a foundation, the noblest after Christ, rises the edifice of the faith of all centuries." (Pope St. Pius X, "Ad Diem Illum Laetissimum", 1904 A.D.)

"And that through the Virgin, and through her more than through any other means, we have offered us a way of reaching the knowledge of Jesus Christ, cannot be doubted when it is remembered that with her alone of all others Jesus was for thirty years united, as a son is usually united with a mother, in the closest ties of intimacy and domestic life. Who could better than His Mother have an open knowledge of the admirable mysteries of the birth and childhood of Christ, and above all of the mystery of the Incarnation, which is the beginning and the foundation of faith? Mary not only preserved and meditated on the events of Bethlehem and the facts which took place in Jerusalem in the Temple of the Lord, but sharing as she did the thoughts and the secret wishes of Christ she may be said to have lived the very life of her Son. Hence nobody ever knew Christ so profoundly as she did, and nobody can ever be more competent as a guide and teacher of the knowledge of Christ." (Pope St. Pius X, "Ad Diem Illum Laetissimum", 1904)

"The supreme Apostolic office which we discharge and the exceedingly difficult condition of these times, daily warn and almost compel Us to watch carefully over the integrity of the Church, the more that the calamities from which she suffers are greater. While, therefore, we endeavor in every way to preserve the rights of the Church and to obviate or repel present or contingent dangers, We constantly seek for help from Heaven - the sole means of effecting anything - that our labors and our care may obtain their wished-for object. We deem that there could be no surer and more efficacious means to this end than by religion and piety to obtain the favor of the great Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, the guardian of our peace and the minister to us of heavenly grace, who is placed on the highest summit of power and glory in Heaven, in order that she may bestow the help of her patronage on men who through so many labors and dangers are striving to reach that eternal city." (Pope Leo XIII, "Supremi Apostolatus Officio", 1883)

"O Mary! Beautiful in thine unsullied holiness, pray for us who are weighed down by the consequences of that sin of our first parents, which God would not suffer to approach thee. Thou art the implacable enemy of the serpent; watch over us, lest his sting inflict death on our souls. We were conceived in sin, and born in sorrow; pray for us, that we may so live as to merit blessing. We are condemned to toil, to suffering, and to death; intercede for us, that our atonement may find acceptance with the Lord. We are exposed to the treachery of our evil inclinations; we are in love with this present life; we forget eternity; we are ever striving to deceive our own hearts: how could we escape hell, were the grace of thy divine Son not unceasingly offered to us, enabling us to triumph over all our enemies? Thou, O Immaculate Mother of Jesus, are the Mother of divine grace! Pray for us that we, who glory in being thy kindred by nature, may be daily more and more enriched with this priceless gift." (Gueranger)

"How grateful and magnificent a spectacle to see in the cities, and towns, and villages, on land and sea - wherever the Catholic faith has penetrated - many hundreds of thousands of pious people uniting their praises and prayers with one voice and heart at every moment of the day, saluting Mary, invoking Mary, hoping everything through Mary. Through her may all the faithful strive to obtain from her Divine Son that the nations plunged in error may return to the Christian teaching and precepts, in which is the foundation of the public safety and the source of peace and true happiness. Through her may they steadfastly endeavor for that most desirable of all blessings, the restoration of the liberty of our Mother, the Church, and the tranquil possession of her rights - rights which have no other object than the careful direction of men's dearest interests, from the exercise of which individuals and nations have never suffered injury, but have derived, in all time, numerous and most precious benefits." (Pope Leo XIII, "Octobri Mense", 1891)

"True, we are passing through disastrous times, when we may well make our own the lamentation of the Prophet: 'There is no truth and no mercy and no knowledge of God on the earth. Blasphemy and lying and homicide and theft and adultery have inundated it' (Os. iv.,1-2). Yet in the midst of this deluge of evil, the Virgin Most Clement rises before our eyes like a rainbow, as the arbiter of peace between God and man: 'I will set my bow in the clouds and it shall be the sign of a covenant between me and between the earth' (Gen. ix.,13). Let the storm rage and sky darken - not for that shall we be dismayed. 'And the bow shall be in the clouds, and I shall see it and shall remember the everlasting covenant' (Ibid.16). 'And there shall no more be waters of a flood to destroy all flesh' (Ibid.15.). Oh yes, if we trust as we should in Mary, now especially when we are about to celebrate, with more than usual fervor, her Immaculate Conception, we shall recognize in her that Virgin most powerful 'who with virginal foot did crush the head of [Satan]' (Off. Immac. Conc.)." (Pope St. Pius X, "Ad Diem Illum Laetissimum", 1904) 

"Oh how bitterly and fiercely is Jesus Christ now being persecuted, and the most holy religion which he founded! And how grave is the peril that threatens many of being drawn away by the errors that are afoot on all sides, to the abandonment of the faith! 'Then let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall' (I Cor. x., 12). And let all, with humble prayer and entreaty, implore of God, through the intercession of Mary, that those who have abandoned the truth may repent. We know, indeed, from experience that such prayer, born of charity and relying on the Virgin, has never been vain. True, even in the future the strife against the Church will never cease, 'for there must be also heresies, that they also who are reproved may be made manifest among you' (I Cor. xi., 19). But neither will the Virgin ever cease to succor us in our trials, however grave they be, and to carry on the fight fought by her since her conception, so that every day we may repeat: 'Today the head of [Satan] was crushed by her' (Office Immac. Con., 11. Vespers, Magnif.)." (Pope St. Pius X, "Ad Diem Illum Laetissimum", 1904)

"The Wisdom of God, with inscrutable providence, disposeth all things rightly: Joachim and Anne are united in wedlock, but their union is sterile. With all the heart's affection they together bind themselves by inviolable vow to the Lord: that if he deign to give them offspring, they without delay will consecrate it to him for ever in the temple. A bright angel appears, and tells them their prayers are heard, and by the grace of the most high King, a daughter shall be given them, full of grace. Holy even in her conception, she is born in a wondrous manner, yet in a way more wondrous still will she give birth, remaining a virgin, to the Son of the most high Father, when he comes freely to cancel the guilt of the world. She is born, then, that blessed Virgin, and at the age of three years is presented in the temple; swift and erect, adorned with her beautiful robe, she ascends the fifteen steps, beneath her parents' gaze. The temple shines with a new glory, when this august Virgin is presented; there she is taught by God, is visited by the angels from heaven, and rejoices with them." (Sequence)

"There is no doubt that the Blessed Virgin received in a high degree both the gift of wisdom and the grace of miracles and even of prophecy, just as Christ had them. But she did not so receive them, as to put them and such like graces to every use, as did Christ: but accordingly as it befitted her condition of life. For she had the use of wisdom in contemplation, according to Luke 2:19: 'But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart.' But she had not the use of wisdom as to teaching: since this befitted not the female sex, according to 1 Timothy 2:12: 'But I suffer not a woman to teach.' The use of miracles did not become her while she lived: because at that time the Teaching of Christ was to be confirmed by miracles, and therefore it was befitting that Christ alone, and His disciples who were the bearers of His doctrine, should work miracles. Hence of John the Baptist it is written (John 10:41) that he 'did no sign'; that is, in order that all might fix their attention on Christ. As to the use of prophecy, it is clear that she had it, from the canticle spoken by her: 'My soul doth magnify the Lord' (Luke 1:46, etc.)." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"To the sufferers in purgatory, whom the burning flame is cleansing and sharp pains are tormenting, may thy compassion bring assistance, O Mary! Fount accessible to all and washing away their sins, thou aidest all, despisest none: to the dead who languish in unceasing tortures, stretch forth thy hand, O Mary! How lovingly do the departed souls sigh towards thee, yearning to be delivered from their sufferings and to be admitted to the sight of thee in the enjoyment of eternal bliss, O Mary! Hear their groans, and hasten, O Mother, to show the love of thy heart; obtain of Jesus that he would deign to heal them through his own wounds, O Mary! Thou art the true hope of them that call upon thee: lo! United multitudes cry to thee for their brethren, that thou wouldst appease thy Son, and obtain for them the heavenly reward, O Mary! In thy goodness, cause the tears thou seest us shed before the feet of the Judge, to extinguish speedily the flames of the avenging fire, that the dear souls may join the angelic choirs, O Mary! And when the strict examination shall take place at God's terrible judgment, oh, then, implore thy Son, the Judge, that we may share the inheritance of the saints, O Mary!" [14th Century Prose (Liturgical Year)]

"Mary is already in the dust of human lives; she lives amidst terror, brain-washings, false accusations, libels, and all the other instruments of terror. The Immaculate is with the maculate, the sinless with the sinner, and she bears no rancor or bitterness toward them - only pity that they do not see or know how loving that Love is that they are sending to His death. In her purity, Mary is on the mountaintop; in her compassion she is amidst curses, death cells, hangmen, executioners, and blood. A man may despair in his consciousness of sin from crying to God for forgiveness, but he cannot shrink from invoking the intercession of God's Mother, who saw sinners do these things and yet prayed for their forgiveness. If the good Holy Mother, Mary, who deserved to be speared evil, could nevertheless, in the special providence of her Son, have a Cross, then how shall we, who deserve not to be ranked with her, expect to escape our meeting with a cross? 'What have I done to deserve this?' is a cry of pride. What did Jesus do? What did Mary do? Let there be no complaint against God for sending a cross; let there only be wisdom enough to see that Mary is there making it lighter, making it sweeter, making it hers!" (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"The fourth good office which Our Lady renders to her children and faithful servants is to protect and defend them against their enemies. Rebecca, by her cares and artifices, delivered Jacob from all the dangers in which he found himself, and particularly from the death which his brother Esau would have inflicted on him because of the envy and hatred which he bore him; as Cain did of old to his brother Abel. Mary, the good Mother of the predestinate, hides them under the wings of her protection, as a hen hides her chickens. She speaks, she stoops down to them, she condescends to all their weaknesses. To secure them from the hawk and vulture, she puts herself round about them, and accompanies them 'like an army in battle array.' (Cant. 6:3). Shall a man who has an army of a hundred thousand soldiers around him fear his enemies? A faithful servant of Mary, surrounded by her protection and her imperial power, has still less to fear. This good Mother and powerful Princess of the Heavens would rather dispatch battalions of millions of angels to assist one of her servants than that it should ever be said that a faithful servant of Mary, who trusted in her, had had to succumb to the malice, the number and the vehemence of his enemies." (St. Louis Marie de Montfort)

"From early times Christians have believed, and not without reason, that she of whom was born the Son of the Most High received privileges of grace above all other beings created by God. He 'will reign in the house of Jacob forever,' 'the Prince of Peace,' the 'King of Kings and Lord of Lords.' And when Christians reflected upon the intimate connection that obtains between a mother and a son, they readily acknowledged the supreme royal dignity of the Mother of God. Hence it is not surprising that the early writers of the Church called Mary 'the Mother of the King' and 'the Mother of the Lord,' basing their stand on the words of St. Gabriel the archangel, who foretold that the Son of Mary would reign forever, and on the words of Elizabeth who greeted her with reverence and called her 'the Mother of my Lord.' Thereby they clearly signified that she derived a certain eminence and exalted station from the royal dignity of her Son. The same thing is found in the writings of St. Jerome where he makes the following statement amidst various interpretations of Mary's name: 'We should realize that Mary means Lady in the Syrian Language.' After him St. Chrysologus says the same thing more explicitly in these words: 'The Hebrew word 'Mary' means 'Domina.' The Angel therefore addresses her as 'Lady' to preclude all servile fear in the Lord's Mother, who was born and was called 'Lady' by the authority and command of her own Son.'" (Pope Pius XII, "Ad Caeli Reginam", 1954 A.D.)

"As the fullness of grace flowed from Christ on to His Mother, so it was becoming that the mother should be like her Son in humility: for 'God giveth grace to the humble,' as is written James 4:6. And therefore, just as Christ, though not subject to the Law, wished, nevertheless, to submit to circumcision and the other burdens of the Law, in order to give an example of humility and obedience; and in order to show His approval of the Law; and, again, in order to take away from the Jews an excuse for calumniating Him: for the same reasons He wished His Mother also to fulfil the prescriptions of the Law, to which, nevertheless, she was not subject... Although the Blessed Virgin had no uncleanness, yet she wished to fulfil the observance of purification, not because she needed it, but on account of the precept of the Law. Thus the Evangelist says pointedly that the days of her purification according to the Law were accomplished; for she needed no purification in herself... Moses seems to have chosen his words in order to exclude uncleanness from the Mother of God ['If a woman, having received seed, shall bear a man-child, she shall be unclean seven days' (Lev. 12:2)], who was with child 'without receiving seed.' It is therefore clear that she was not bound to fulfil that precept, but fulfilled the observance of purification of her own accord" (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"This is the salutation with which the Archangel greets Mary. It shows us what was his admiration and his profound veneration for the Virgin of Nazareth. The holy Gospel tells us that Mary was troubled at these words, and thought within herself what such a salutation as this could imply. The sacred Scriptures record many angelical salutations: but, as St. Ambrose, St. Andrew of Crete, and, before them, Origen had remarked, there is not one which contains such praises as this does. The prudent Virgin was, therefore, naturally surprised at the extraordinary words of the angel, and, as the early fathers observe, they would remind her of that other interview between Eve and the serpent. She therefore remained silent, and it was only after the Archangel had spoken to her a second time, that she made him a reply. And yet, Gabriel had spoken not only with all the eloquence, but with all the profound wisdom of a celestial spirit initiated into the divine mysteries; and, in his own superhuman language, he announced that the moment had come when Eve was to be transformed into Mary. There was present before him a woman destined for the sublimest dignity, the woman that was to be the Mother of God; yet, up to this solemn moment, Mary was but a daughter of the human race. Think, then, taking Gabriel's words as your guide, what must have been the holiness of Mary in this her first estate: is it not evident that the prophecy, made in the earthly paradise had already been accomplished in her?" (Dom Gueranger)

"O thou elect from all eternity, long was thou hidden in the shell of the letter; of thee as future Mother of Christ, the Prophets foretold in the Scripture, but in types. The Mystery was unveiled when the Word made Flesh willed to be born of thee, who in His love did powerfully snatch us from the power of the wicked one. Thee by the throne of Solomon, thee by the fleece of Gedeon, we believe to be foreshown, and by the bush unburnt, if thy ancient Testament we mystically ponder. On the fleece the dew descending, in the bush the flame resplendent (yet neither hurt thereby), was Christ assuming flesh in thee, yet not destroying thy purity by His birth. The flower that was to spring from thee, the stem, and benefit the world, Isaias sang; by the flower prefiguring Christ, whose power everlasting neither began nor endeth. Thou art the reservoir of the fountain of life, thou art a lamp burning and shining: through thee the light supernal on us hath shed its ray; burning with fire of charity, shining with light of chastity, bringing into the world thy Son, the light of supreme brightness. O gate of our salvation, hear us and comfort us, and from our crooked ways hasten to call us back: we are calling on thee from the abyss, sailing on the sea of the world; from the furious enemy deliver us by thy prayer. O Jesus our salvation, by the incomparable merit of Thy Mother, deign to visit us in this valley with the gift of Thy grace. Thou who willest that no one be condemned, grant us to steer our course so straightly through this sea that after death we may be worthy to be rewarded in Thy rest. Amen." (Sequence)

"On the other hand, we must believe that her charity could not possibly be defective: as her love of God surpasses the love of all the elect, so the tenderness of all mothers united, centered upon an only child, is nothing to the love wherewith Mary surrounds the least, the most forgotten, the most neglected of all the children of God, who are her children too. She forestalls them in her solicitude, listens at all times to their humble prayers, pursues them in their guilty flights, sustains their weaknesses, compassionates their ills, whether of body or of soul, sheds upon all men the heavenly favors whereof she is the treasury. Let us, then, say to her, in the words of one of her great servants: 'O most holy Mother of God, who hast beautified heaven and earth, in leaving this world thou hast not abandoned man. Here below thou didst live in heaven; from heaven thou conversest with us. Thrice happy those who contemplated thee and lived with the Mother of life! But in the same way as thou didst dwell in the flesh with them of the first age, thou now dwellest with us spiritually. We hear thy voice; and all our voices reach thine ear; and thy continual protection over us makes thy presence evident. Thou dost visit us; thine eye is upon us all; and although our eyes cannot see thee, O most holy one, yet you art in the midst of us, showing thyself in various ways to whomsoever is worthy. Thy immaculate body, come forth from the tomb, hinders not the immaterial power, the most pure activity of that spirit of thine, which being inseparable from the Holy Ghost, breathes also where it wills. O Mother of God, receive the grateful homage of our joy, and speak for thy children to Him who has glorified thee: whatsoever thou askest of Him, He will accomplish it by His divine power; may He be blessed for ever.'" (Liturgical Year)

"To form the holy Virgin's love, it was necessary to mingle together all that is most tender in nature and most efficacious in grace. Nature had to be there, for it was love of a son; grace had to act, for it was love of a God. But what is beyond our imagination is that nature and grace were insufficient; for it is not in nature to have God for a son; and grace, at least ordinary grace, cannot love a son as God: we must therefore raise higher. Suffer me, O Christians, to raise my thoughts today beyond nature and grace, and to seek the source of this love in the very bosom of the Eternal Father. The divine Son, of whom Mary is Mother belongs to her and to God. She is united with God the Father by becoming the Mother of His only begotten Son, who is common to her and the Eternal Father by the manner of His conception. But to make her capable of conceiving God, the Most High had to overshadow her with His own power - that is, to extend to her His own fecundity. In this way Mary is associated in the eternal generation. But this God, who willed to give her His Son, was obliged also, in order to complete His work, to place in her chaste bosom a spark of the love He himself bears to His only Son, who is the splendor of His glory and the living image of His substance. Such is the origin of Mary's love: it springs from an effusion of God's heart into hers; and her love of her Son is given to her from the same source as her Son Himself. After this mysterious communication, what hast thou to say, O human reason? Canst thou pretend to understand the union of Mary with Jesus Christ? It has in it something of that perfect unity which exists between the Father and the Son. Do not attempt any more to explain that maternal love which springs from so high a source, and which is an overflow of the love of the Father for His only begotten Son." (Bossuet)

"Venerable Brethren, may the Virgin Mother of God hear the prayers of Our paternal heart - which are yours also - and obtain for all a true love of the Church - she whose sinless soul was filled with the divine spirit of Jesus Christ above all other created souls, who 'in the name of the whole human race' gave her consent 'for a spiritual marriage between the Son of God and human nature.' Within her virginal womb Christ our Lord already bore the exalted title of Head of the Church; in a marvelous birth she brought Him forth as the source of all supernatural life, and presented Him newly born, as Prophet, King and Priest to those who, from among Jews and Gentiles, were the first to come to adore Him. Furthermore, her only Son, condescending to His mother's prayer in 'Cana of Galilee,' performed the miracle by which 'his disciples believed in Him.' It was she, the second Eve, who, free from all sin, original or personal, and always more intimately united with her Son, offered Him on Golgotha to the Eternal Father for all the children of Adam, sin-stained by his unhappy fall, and her mother's rights and her mother's love were included in the sacrifice. Thus she who, according to the flesh, was the mother of our Head, through the added title of pain and glory became, according to the Spirit, the mother of all His members. She it was who through her powerful prayers obtained that the Spirit of our Divine Redeemer, already given on the Cross, should be bestowed, accompanied by miraculous gifts, on the newly founded Church at Pentecost; and finally, bearing with courage and confidence the tremendous burden of her sorrows and desolation, she, truly the Queen of Martyrs, more than all the faithful 'filled up those things that are wanting of the sufferings of Christ...for His Body, which is the Church'; and she continues to have for the Mystical Body of Christ, born of the pierced Heart of the Savior, the same motherly care and ardent love with which she cherished and fed the Infant Jesus in the crib." (Pope Pius XII, "Mystici Corporis Christi", 1943)

"There too, as in so many other shrines of Mary throughout the world, the words of today's liturgy seem to resound with a particularly authentic force: 'You are the great pride of our nation' (Jdt 15:9), and also: '...when our nation was brought low...you avenged our ruin, walking in the straight path before our God' (Jdt 13:20). At Fatima these words resound as one particular echo of the experiences not only of the Portuguese nation but also of so many other countries and peoples on this earth: indeed, they echo the experience of modern mankind as a whole, the whole of the human family. And so I come here today because on this very day last year, in Saint Peter's Square in Rome, the attempt on the Pope's life was made, in mysterious coincidence with the anniversary of the first apparition at Fatima, which occurred on 13 May 1917. I seemed to recognize in the coincidence of the dates a special call to come to this place. And so, today I am here. I have come in order to thank Divine Providence in this place which the Mother of God seems to have chosen in a particular way. Misericordiae Domini, quia non sumus consumpti (Through God's mercy we were spared-Lam 3:22), I repeat once more with the prophet. I have come especially in order to confess here the glory of God himself: 'Blessed be the Lord God, who created the heavens and the earth', I say in the words of today's liturgy (Jdt 13:18). And to the Creator of heaven and earth I also raise that special hymn of glory which is she herself, the Immaculate Mother of the Incarnate Word: 'O daughter, you are blessed by the Most High God above all women on earth...your hope will never depart from the hearts of men, as they remember the power of God. May God grant this to be a perpetual honor to you '(Jdt 18:20). At the basis of this song of praise, which the Church lifts up with joy here as in so many other places on the earth, is the incomparable choice of a daughter of the human race to be the Mother of God. And therefore let God above all be praised: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. May blessing and veneration be given to Mary, the model of the Church, as the 'dwelling-place of the Most Holy Trinity'." (Pope John Paul II, 1982)

"But to the blessing uttered by that woman upon her who was his mother according to the flesh, Jesus replies in a significant way: 'Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it' (Lk. 11:28). He wishes to divert attention from motherhood understood only as a fleshly bond, in order to direct it towards those mysterious bonds of the spirit which develop from hearing and keeping God's word. This same shift into the sphere of spiritual values is seen even more clearly in another response of Jesus reported by all the Synoptics. When Jesus is told that 'his mother and brothers are standing outside and wish to see him,' he replies: 'My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it' (cf. Lk. 8:20-21). This he said 'looking around on those who sat about him,' as we read in Mark (3:34) or, according to Matthew (12:49), 'stretching out his hand towards his disciples.' ... Is Jesus thereby distancing himself from his mother according to the flesh? Does he perhaps wish to leave her in the hidden obscurity which she herself has chosen? If this seems to be the case from the tone of those words, one must nevertheless note that the new and different motherhood which Jesus speaks of to his disciples refers precisely to Mary in a very special way. Is not Mary the first of 'those who hear the word of God and do it'? And therefore does not the blessing uttered by Jesus in response to the woman in the crowd refer primarily to her? Without any doubt, Mary is worthy of blessing by the very fact that she became the mother of Jesus according to the flesh ('Blessed is the womb that bore you...'), but also and especially because already at the Annunciation she accepted the word of God, because she believed it, because she was obedient to God, and because she 'kept' the word and 'pondered it in her heart' (cf. Lk. 1:38, 45; 2:19, 51) and by means of her whole life accomplished it. Thus we can say that the blessing proclaimed by Jesus is not in opposition, despite appearances, to the blessing uttered by the unknown woman, but rather coincides with that blessing in the person of this Virgin Mother, who called herself only 'the handmaid of the Lord' (Lk. 1:38). If it is true that 'all generations will call her blessed' (cf. Lk. 1:48), then it can be said that the unnamed woman was the first to confirm unwittingly that prophetic phrase of Mary's Magnificat and to begin the Magnificat of the ages." (Pope John Paul II)

"We, O Mary! Have corrupted our way; we have disobeyed our Lord; we have broken His law; we have preferred our own selfish gratifications to the service we owed Him: but thou wast ever filled with His holy love, and there passed not even a shadow of sin upon thy soul, O spotless mirror of justice and holiness! Virgin most faithful! The grace of thy Son ever triumphed in thy heart. Mystical rose! The fragrance of thy virtues unceasingly ascended to His throne, changing only in its daily increase of sweetness. Tower of ivory! Fair beyond measure, without one spot to mar thy purity! House of gold! Thou didst ever reflect the precious gifts of the Holy Ghost. Have pity, then, upon us, for we are sinners. We have obliged our God to repent that He made us: but in thee, dear Mother, He has ever been well pleased. Thou art the good land, wherein His divine seed yielded its thousandfold of fruit: pray for us, that He give fresh fertility to our hearts, and root up from them the thorns, which choke the heavenly plant. We are defiled by sin; may He, through the merits of the tears thou didst shed at the foot of the cross, mercifully cleanse us. If thy divine Son have already pardoned us, there are the consequences of our sins, which still weaken and humble us, like the sores of wounds that have been cured: take us, sweet Mother of our Jesus, under the mantle of thy tender care. We have too little dread of sin; we are often on the verge of offending our God; oh! Obtain for these poor children of thine courage and firmness of resolution, and ambition for holiness of life. Thy intercession must win for us that precious devotedness to God's honor, which kills self-love, the root of sin. Oh! accursed self-love, which may lead us to hell, who are now perhaps in the grace of thy divine Son! The deluge, brought on by our sins, is hurrying its vengeance against mankind; and we, O Mary! are resolved to seek our refuge in the Ark of the Church, the safe shelter created for us by thy Jesus. But we presume to pray to thee for our brethren throughout the world. Our God has given thee a power to stay His anger, and to win for guilty mortals an extension of mercy: show this power now, for our world is provoking its Master to destroy it. If the flood-gate of His just indignation burst upon the face of our earth, millions of souls that have been redeemed by the Blood of thy divine Son would be lost eternally. If the sweet dove of peace bring her olive-branch only when that terrible justice is appeased, it would be too late for thy loving heart. Come before the deluge, O beautiful rainbow of our Father's reconciliation! The love of a Mother, who is the very Queen of mercy, emboldens us to sue for universal mercy. Can the prayer of her, in whose purity and innocence the very God of holiness finds no blemish be denied? Pray Him, then, to pardon us, and all sinners!" (Gueranger)

"Mary is present at Cana in Galilee as the Mother of Jesus, and in a significant way she contributes to that 'beginning of the signs' which reveal the messianic power of her Son. We read: 'When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, 'They have no wine.' And Jesus said to her, 'O woman, what have you to do with me? My hour has not yet come'' (Jn. 2:3-4). In John's Gospel that 'hour' means the time appointed by the Father when the Son accomplishes his task and is to be glorified (cf. Jn. 7:30; 8:20; 12:23, 27; 13:1; 17:1; 19:27). Even though Jesus' reply to his mother sounds like a refusal (especially if we consider the blunt statement 'My hour has not yet come' rather than the question), Mary nevertheless turns to the servants and says to them: 'Do whatever he tells you' (Jn. 2:5). Then Jesus orders the servants to fill the stone jars with water, and the water becomes wine, better than the wine which has previously been served to the wedding guests. What deep understanding existed between Jesus and his mother? How can we probe the mystery of their intimate spiritual union? But the fact speaks for itself. It is certain that that event already quite clearly outlines the new dimension, the new meaning of Mary's motherhood. Her motherhood has a significance which is not exclusively contained in the words of Jesus and in the various episodes reported by the Synoptics (Lk. 11:27-28 and Lk. 8:19-21; Mt. 12:46-50; Mk. 3:31-35). In these texts Jesus means above all to contrast the motherhood resulting from the fact of birth with what this 'motherhood' (and also 'brotherhood') is to be in the dimension of the Kingdom of God, in the salvific radius of God's fatherhood. In John's text on the other hand, the description of the Cana event outlines what is actually manifested as a new kind of motherhood according to the spirit and not just according to the flesh, that is to say Mary's solicitude for human beings, her coming to them in the wide variety of their wants and needs. At Cana in Galilee there is shown only one concrete aspect of human need, apparently a small one of little importance ('They have no wine'). But it has a symbolic value: this coming to the aid of human needs means, at the same time, bringing those needs within the radius of Christ's messianic mission and salvific power. Thus there is a mediation: Mary places herself between her Son and mankind in the reality of their wants, needs and sufferings. She puts herself 'in the middle,' that is to say she acts as a mediatrix not as an outsider, but in her position as mother. She knows that as such she can point out to her Son the needs of mankind, and in fact, she 'has the right' to do so. Her mediation is thus in the nature of intercession: Mary 'intercedes' for mankind. And that is not all. As a mother she also wishes the messianic power of her Son to be manifested, that salvific power of his which is meant to help man in his misfortunes, to free him from the evil which in various forms and degrees weighs heavily upon his life. Precisely as the Prophet Isaiah had foretold about the Messiah in the famous passage which Jesus quoted before his fellow townsfolk in Nazareth: 'To preach good news to the poor...to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind...' (cf. Lk. 4:18). Another essential element of Mary's maternal task is found in her words to the servants: 'Do whatever he tells you.' The Mother of Christ presents herself as the spokeswoman of her Son's will, pointing out those things which must be done so that the salvific power of the Messiah may be manifested. At Cana, thanks to the intercession of Mary and the obedience of the servants, Jesus begins 'his hour.' At Cana Mary appears as believing in Jesus. Her faith evokes his first 'sign' and helps to kindle the faith of the disciples. We can therefore say that in this passage of John's Gospel we find as it were a first manifestation of the truth concerning Mary's maternal care." (Pope John Paul II)

Also See: Praise of Mary | Devotion to Mary / Devotion to Mary is Recommended | We Should Imitate Mary / Mary is Our Model | Marian Facts | Marian Scriptural References | Some Reasons to Honor the Blessed Virgin Mary | Some Thoughts on the Blessed Virgin Mary

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As many faithful Catholics already know, the majestic Latin language – the 'official language' of the Catholic Church – promotes unity, helps safeguard the purity of doctrine, connects us with our Catholic ancestors, allows us to pray in "one voice", and even ties back to the inscription on the Cross which was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek. The Latin language is still used today in the precious treasure that is the Traditional Latin ('Tridentine') Mass, in 'everyday speech' (much of English is derived from Latin), in mottos, in specialized fields, and in educational endeavors. It has been shown that the study of Latin brings many benefits. "And, Latin is truly the language of heaven!"

If you enjoy Latin, you may be glad to know that this full-sized (8.5" x 11"), tradition-minded publication features an assortment of activity types related to Latin (including: word searches, crosswords, coloring activities, challenges, fill-ins, spelling bee, quizzes, unscrambles, true/false, multiple choice, matching, cross-offs, circling, word associations, translation exercises, and more...), and treats of various topics (including: common Latin words, Latin language facts, Latin grammar, nouns & verbs, abbreviations, phrases / sayings / mottos, prefixes, cardinal numbers, grammatical gender, inflection, word roots, diacritics / accenting, pronunciation, Latin prayers / hymns, Scripture verses, Catholic phrases, and more...).

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