Consecration to Jesus through Mary

sa6_visitation_hrSt Louis De Montfort prophesied that True Devotion to Mary would be the way of life adopted by the great saints of the latter times. Another 200 years later Pope John Paul II described the reading of this book as “a decisive turning point” in his life. True devotion to Holy Mary is an essential pillar of Catholic consecrated life and Franciscan spirituality. Consecration to Jesus through Mary as described by St. Louis De Montfort is his book “True Devotion to Mary” may well be the key turning in your life. The church and all of human kind is in need of great saints in these latter times. As the John Paul II advised us all, “Be not afraid” my dear brothers and sisters.

If you are practicing Catholic and wish to complete the consecration then get and read the book “True Devotion to Mary” and follow the guidance provided by St. Louis. If you are non-Catholic you can start by contacting your local Catholic parish and entering their RCIA program to prepare you to receive the sacraments.

Other than your initial conversion and receipt of the sacraments of the Holy Roman Catholic Church, your total consecration to Jesus through Mary may be the decisive turning point in your life as it was for Blessed John Paul II.

My Dear Friends,

For those or you who may not have already done so, I offer you the opportunity to make this consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Totus Tuus!


I , N., a faithless sinner– renew and ratify today in thy hands, O Immaculate Mother, the vows of my Baptism; I renounce forever Satan, his pomps and works; and I give myself entirely to Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom, to carry my cross after Him all the days of my life, and to be more faithful to Him than I have ever been before.

In the presence of all the heavenly court I choose thee this day, for my Mother and Mistress. I deliver and consecrate to thee, as thy slave, my body and soul, my goods, both interior and exterior, and even the value of all my good actions, past, present and future; leaving to thee the entire and full right of disposing of me, and all that belongs to me, without exception, according to thy good pleasure, for the greater glory of God, in time and in eternity. Amen.

116 Responses to Consecration to Jesus through Mary

  1. Karen says:

    I suggest adding a facebook like button for the blog!

  2. admin says:

    The more the Holy Ghost finds Mary, his inseparable spouse, in any soul, the more active and mighty he becomes in producing Jesus Christ in that soul, and that soul in Jesus Christ”

    – St Louis De Montfort

  3. admin says:

    Dear Friends of Mystical City Media,

    A few weeks ago I sent you the text for your consecration to Jesus through Mary. Of course, I hope and pray that each of you have or will eventually complete your consecration with a fervent a devotion and childlike trust in Holy Mary and through to Her Divine Son and our Our Savior Jesus Christ. I recommend this consecration to you because I myself was saved by Her intercession in my hour of most desperate need (when under severe attack by our infernal enemies) and I have witnessed Her miracles and seen her most beautiful, holy and humble face. How could I not extol Her virtues to you, when I know so well the benefits and protection for She wishes to provide to all Her children and how fervently she prays for all of us?

    Even so I realize many of you may not have had these personal experiences and that your total consecration and mine as well (as it was Blessed John Paul II) and so many others is really a life long journey of conversion and of giving ourselves completely to Jesus through Holy Mary. Therefore, as a next step, I ask that you purchase, borrow or download a copy of “True Devotion to Mary” by St Louis De Montfort to begin to read it, slowly so you have time to understand.

    I will follow up by taking us though the key points of each of the chapters and citing examples from Her own life, so that we together may better understand the great gift The Most Holy Trinity provided to us in our Holy Mother Mary. She is the Holy and Beautiful Mother of all human kind and continually intercedes for us Her dear children before the Most holy Trinity. In my next e-mail to you we will cover some of the key points of Chapter 1, “Necessity of the Blessed Virgin and Devotion to Her”

    Peace and Good to you dear friends!

    Poverello’s Apprentice

  4. admin says:

    Key Points from Chapter #1 of “True Devotion to Mary” by St. Louis De Montfort

    Chapter 1 – “Necessity of The Blessed Virgin and True Devotion to Her”

    –Article One–
    “Mary Was Necessary to God in the Incarnation of the Word”

    Key Points

    “It was only through Mary that God the Father gave his Son to the World”

    “The Son of God became man for our salvation; but it was in Mary and by Mary. God the Holy Ghost formed Jesus Christ in Mary; but it was only after asking her consent by one of the first ministers of His court.”

    “God the Father communicated to Mary His fruitfulness, inasmuch as a mere creature was capable of it, in order that he might give her the power to produce His Son and all the members of His Mystical Body”.

    “God the Son descended into her virginal womb as the New Adam in His terrestrial paradise, to take His pleasure there, and to work in secret marvels of grace”.

    “If we closely examine the rest of our Blessed Lord’s life, we shall see that it was His will to begin His miracles by Mary. He sanctified St. John in the womb of his mother, St. Elizabeth, but it was by Mary’s word”. No sooner has she spoken than John was sanctified; and this was His first miracle of grace.”

    “At the marriage of Cana, He changed the water into wine; but it was at Mary’s humble prayer; and this was His first miracle of nature.”

    “God the Holy Ghost, being barren in God — that is to say, not producing another Divine Person — is become fruitful in Mary, whom He has espoused. It was with her, in her, and of her that He produced His Masterpiece, which is the God made Man, and that He goes on producing daily, to the end of the world, the predestinate and the members of the Body of that adorable head.”

  5. admin says:

    Article Two – “Mary Is Necessary to God in the Sanctification of Souls”

    Key Points

    “The conduct with which the Three Persons of the Most Holy Trinity have deigned to pursue in the Incarnation and the first coming of Jesus Christ, They still pursue daily in an invisible manner, throughout the whole Church; and They still pursue is even to the consummation of the ages in the last coming of Jesus Christ”

    “God the Father wishes to have children by Mary to the consummation of the world”

    “God the Holy Ghost wishes to form elect for Himself in her and by her”

    “Mary has produced with the Holy Ghost the greatest thing which has been or very will be – A God Man; and she will consequently produce the greatest saints that will ever will be in the end of time”. The formation and education of the great saints who shall come at the end of the world are reserved for her.”

    “When the Holy Ghost, her spouse, has found Mary in a soul, he flies there. He enters there in His fullness; He communicates Himself to that soul abundantly, and to the full extent to which it makes room for His spouse”.


    1. “Mary is the Queen of All Hearts”

    Key Points

    Mary is the Queen of Heaven and earth by grace, as Jesus is the king of them by nature and by conquest.

    2. “Mary is Necessary to Men”

    a. Necessary to all men to attain salvation

    Key Points

    “We must conclude that the most holy Virgin being necessary to God by a necessity we call “hypothetical”, in consequence of His will (to become the God man), she is far more necessary to men, in order that they may attain their last end.”

    b. Still more necessary to those called to a special perfection

    Key Points

    “If devotion to the most holy Virgin Mary is necessary to all men simply for working out the salvation, it is still more so for those called to a special perfection; and I do not think anyone can acquire and intimate union with Our Lord and a perfect fidelity to the Holy Ghost without a very great union with the most Holy Virgin, and a great dependence on her assistance.”

    c. Especially necessary to the great saints of the latter times

    Key Points

    “I have said that this would come to pass, particularly at the end of the world and indeed presently, because the Most High with His holy Mother has to form for Himself great saints who shall surpass most of the other saints in sanctity…”

    “These great souls, full of grace and zeal, shall be chosen to match themselves against the enemies of God, who shall rage on all sides; and they shall be singularly devout to our Blessed Lady, illuminated by her light, strengthened with her nourishment, led by her spirit, supported by her arm and sheltered under her protection, so that shall fight with one hand and build with the other.”

  6. admin says:

    Dear Friends of Mystical City Media,

    As we continue our work to understand of the great work “True Devotion to Mary’ by St. Louis De Montfort, we now turn our attention “providential function of Holy Mary these latter times.”

    Totus Tuus!

    Poverello’s Apprentice

    Article Three – The Providential Function of Mary In the Latter Times

    Selected quotes from St, Louis

    1. “It was through Mary that the salvation was begun, and it is through Mary that it must be consummated”

    2. “God, then, wishes to make known Mary, the masterpiece of His hands, in these later times.”

    3. “Being the sure means and straight and immaculate way to go to Jesus Christ and to find Him perfectly, it is by her that the souls who are to shine forth especially in sanctity have to find our Lord.”

    4. “Mary must be terrible to the devil and his crew, as an army ranged in battle, principally in these latter times, because the devil, knowing he has but little time, and now less than ever, to destroy souls, will every day redouble his efforts and his combats.”

    5. “It is principally in these last and cruel persecutions of the devil, which shall go on increasing daily until the rule of Antichrist, that we ought to understand that first and celebrated prediction and curse of God pronounced in the terrestrial paradise against the serpent.”

    6. “I will put an enmity between thee and the woman and thy seed and her seed, she shall crush thy head, and though shalt lie in wait for her heel.” (Gen 3:15)

    7. “God has never made and formed but one enmity; but it is an irreconcilable one, which shall endure and grow even to the end. It is between Mary, His worthy mother, and the devil – between the children and servants of the Blessed Virgin, and children and tools of Lucifer. The most terrible of all the enemies which God has set up against the devil is His holy Mother Mary”

    8. “In a word God wishes that His Holy Mother should be at present more known, more loved, more honored than she ever has before. This, no doubt, will take place if the predestinate enter, with the grace and light of the Holy Ghost, into the interior and perfect practice which I will disclosed to them shortly.”

    9. “They will know what is the surest, the easiest, the shortest and the most perfect means of going to Jesus Christ; and they will give themselves to Mary, body and soul, without reserve, that they may thus belong entirely to Jesus Christ.”

    10. “They will be the ministers of the Lord who, like a burning fire, shall kindle the fire of divine love everywhere.”

    11. “They shall be “like sharp arrows in the hand of the powerful” Mary to pierce her enemies.” Ps. 126:4)

    12. “They shall be the sons of Levi, well purified by the fire of the great tribulation, and closing adhering to God (1 Cor. 6:17), the should carry the gold of love in their heart, the incense of prayer in their spirit, and the myrrh of mortification in their body.”

    13. “They shall be the true apostles of the latter times, to whom the Lord of Hosts shall give the word and the might to work marvels and to carry off with glory the spoils of His enemies”.

    14. “In a word, we know that they shall be true disciples of Jesus Christ, walking in the footsteps of His poverty, humility and contempt of the world, charity: teaching the narrow way of God in pure truth, according to the holy Gospel, and not according to the maxims of the world; troubling themselves about nothing; not accepting persons; sparing, fearing and listening to no mortal, however influential he may be.”

    15. “These are the great men who are to come; but Mary is the one who, by order of the Most High, shall fashion them for extending His empire over that of the impious, the idolaters and the Mahometans.”

  7. admin says:

    Key Points from Chapter #2 of “True Devotion to Mary” by St. Louis De Montfort

    Chapter II – “Fundamental Truths of Devotion to the Blessed Virgin”

    First Truth – Jesus Christ the Last End of Devotion to Mary –

    “Jesus Christ Our Savior, true God and true Man, out to be the last end of all our devotions, else they are false and delusive.”

    “If, then, we establish solid devotion to our Blessed Lady, it is only to establish more perfectly devotion to Jesus Christ, and to provide an easy and secure means of finding Jesus Christ.”

    “I turn for one moment to Three, O sweet Jesus, to complain lovingly to Thy Divine Majesty that the greater part of Christians, even the most learned do not know the necessary union there is between Thee and Thy holy Mother.”

    “After that my sweet Master, is it not an astonishingly pitiable thing of all men here below in regard to Thy holy Mother? I speak not so much of idolators and pagans, who knowing Thee not, care not to know her, I speak not even of heretics and schematics, who care not to be devout to Thy holy Mother, being separated as they are from Thee and Thy holy Church; but I speak of Catholic Christians, and even the doctors among Catholics who make a profession of teaching truths to others, and know not Thee or Thy holy Mother, except in a speculative, dry, barren and indifferent manner.”

    “We hear them sometimes speak of devotion to our Blessed Lady, not for the sake of establishing it and persuading men to embrace it, but to destroy the abuses made of it; and all the while these teaches are without piety toward Thyself, simply because they have none for Mary.”

    “O My sweet Jesus, do these people have Thy spirit? Do they please Thee in acting thus? Does is please Thee then, for fear of displeasing Thee, we neglect doing our utmost to please Thy Mother?”

    “Yet, my sweet master, the greater part of the learned could not discourage devotion to Thy holy Mother more, and cold not show more indifference to it…”

    “So, as up to this point I had still said nothing in honor of Thy holy Mother. “give me know the grace to praise Thee worthily,” in spite of all her enemies, who are Thine as well, and grant me to say loudly with the saints. “Let not the man to look for the mercy of God who offends His holy Mother.”

    “Make me love Three ardently, so that I may obtain of Thy Mercy a true devotion to Thy holy Mother and to inspire the whole earth with it; and for that end, receive the burning prayer to Thee with St. Augustine and Thee other friends:”

    “Thou art Christ, my holy Father, my tender God, my great King, my good Shepard, my one Master, my best Helper, my most Beautiful and my Beloved, my living Bread, my Priest forever, my Leader to my country, my true Light, my holy Sweetness, my straight Way, my excellent Wisdom, my pure Simplicity, my pacific Harmony, my whole Guard, my good Portion, my everlasting Salvation”.

    “Christ Jesus, my sweet Lord, why have I ever loved, why in my life have I ever desired except Thee, Jesus my God?”

  8. admin says:

    Second Truth – We belong to Jesus and Mary as Their Slaves –

    “We must conclude, from what Jesus Christ is with regard to us, that, as the Apostle says (1 Cor. 6:19-20), we do not belong to ourselves but are entirely His, as His members and His slaves, whom he has bought at an infinitely dear price, the price of all His blood. Before Baptism we belonged to the devil, as his slaves, but Baptism had made us true slaves of Jesus Christ, who have no right to live, to work or to die, except to bring forth fruit for that God-Man (Rom. 7:4); to glorify Him in our bodies and to let Him reign in our souls, because we are His conquest, His acquired people and His inheritance.”

    “Here on earth there are two ways of belonging to another and of depending on his authority: namely, simple service and slavery, whence we derive the words “servant” and “slave”.

    “By common service among Christians a man engages himself to serve another during a certain time, at certain rate of wages of recompense.”

    “By slavery a man is entirely dependent upon another during his whole life, and must serve his master without claiming any wages or reward, just as one his beasts, over which he has the right of life and death”.

    “There are three sorts of slavery: a slavery of nature, a slavery of constraint and a slavery of will. All creatures are slaves Of God in the first sense: “The earth is the Lords and fullness thereof” (Ps: 23:1); the demons and the damned are slaves in the second sense; the just and the saints in the third. Because by slavery of the will we make choice of God and His service above all things; even though nature did not oblige us to do so, slavery of the will is the most perfect and glorious to God, who beholds the heart (1 Kg. 16:7), claims the heart (Prov. 23:26) and calls Himself the God of the heart (Ps. 72:76), that is, of the loving will”.

    “There is nothing among men which makes us belong to another more than slavery. There is nothing among Christians that makes us more absolutely belong to Jesus Christ and His holy Mother than the slavery of the will, according to the example of Jesus Christ Himself, who took on Himself the form of a slave for love of us (Phil. 2:7); and according to the example of the Holy Virgin, who called herself the servant and slave of Lord (Lk. 1:38)”.

    “Now that I have given these explanations, I say that we ought to belong to Jesus Christ, and to serve Him not as mercenary servants, but as loving slaves who as result of their great love, give themselves up to serve Him in the quality of slaves simply for the honor of belonging to Him”.

    “What I say absolutely of Jesus Christ, I say relatively of Our Lady. Since Jesus Christ chose her for the inseparable companion of His life, of His death, of His glory, and of His power in Heaven and upon earth, He gave her by grace, relatively to His Majesty, all the same rights and privileges which He possesses by nature. “All that is fitting to God by nature is fitting to Mary by grace,” say the saints; so that, according to them, Mary and Jesus, having but the same will and the same power, have also the same subjects, servants and slaves.”

    “We may, therefore, following the sentiments of the saints and many other great men, call ourselves and make ourselves the loving slaves of the most holy Virgin, in order to be, by that very means the more perfect slaves of Jesus Christ. Our Blessed Lady is the means Our Lord made use of to come to us. She is also the means which make use of to go to Him.”

    “Moreover, if, as I have said, the holy Virgin is the Queen and Sovereign of Heaven and Earth, has she not as many subjects and slaves as there are creatures? St. Anselm, St. Bernard, St. Bernadine and St. Bonaventure say: “All things, the Virgin included, are subject to the empire of God: Behold, all things, and God included, are subject to the empire of the Virgin.” Is it not reasonable that among so many slaves of constraint there should be some of love, who of their own goodwill, in quality of slaves, should choose Mary for their mistress?”

  9. admin says:

    Third Truth – We Need Mary in Order to Die to Ourselves –

    78. “Our best actions are ordinarily stained and corrupted by our corrupt nature. When we put clean, clear water into a vessel which has a foul and evil smell, or wine into a cask the inside of which has been tainted by another wine which has been in it, the clear water and the good wine are spoilt, and readily take on the bad odor. In like manner, when God puts into the vessel of our souls, spoilt by original and actual sin, His graces and heavenly dews, or the delicious wine of His love, His gifts are ordinarily spoilt and corrupted by the bad leaven and the evil which sin has left within us.”

    79. To rid ourselves of self we must:

    “Thoroughly recognize by the light of the Holy Ghost, our inward corruption, our incapacity for every good thing useful for salvation, our weakness in all things, our inconstancy at all times, our unworthiness of every grace, and our iniquity in every position.”

    “Our bodies are so corrupted that they are called by the Holy Ghost bodies of sin (Rom. 6:6), conceived in sin (Ps. 50:7), nourished in sin, and capable of all sin—bodies subject to thousands of maladies, which go on corrupting from day to day, and which engender nothing but disease, vermin and corruption.”

    “Our soul, united to our body, has become so carnal that it is called flesh: “All flesh having corrupted its way.” (Gen. 6:12).”

    “After this, ought we to be astonished if Our Lord has said that whoever whishes to follow Him must renounce himself and hate his own life, and that whosoever shall love his own life shall lose it, and whoever shall hate it, shall save it? (Jn. 12:25).”

    “In order to rid ourselves of self, we must die to ourselves daily.”

    “We must choose, therefore, among all the devotions to the Blessed Virgin, the one which draws us most to the death to ourselves, inasmuch as it will be the best and most sanctifying.”

    “The practice which I am about to disclose is one of these secrets of grace, unknown to the greater number of Christians, known to even a few of the devout, and practiced and relished by a lesser number still.”

  10. admin says:

    Fourth Truth – We Need Mary as Our Mediatrix With Our Mediator, Jesus Christ
    “83. It is more perfect, because it is more humble, not to approach God of ourselves without taking a mediator.”

    “84. Our Lord is our advocate and Mediator of redemption with God The Father.”

    “85. But have we not need of a mediator with the Mediator Himself?”

    “Let us say boldly with St. Bernard that we have need of a mediator with the Mediator Himself, and it is the divine Mary who is the most capable of filling that charitable office. It was through her that Jesus Christ came to us and it is through her we must go to Him.”

    “86. All this is taken from St. Bernard and St. Bonaventure, so that according to them, we have three steps to mount to go to God: the first, which is nearest to us and the most suited to our capacity, is Mary; the second is Jesus Christ; and the third is God the Father. To go to Jesus we must go to Mary; she is our mediatrix of intercession. To go to the Father we must go to Jesus; for he is our Mediator of redemption. Now the devotion I am about to bring forward observes this order perfectly.”

  11. admin says:

    Fifth Truth – We Need Mary In Order To Preserve The Graces and Treasures We Have Received From God

    “87. It is very difficult, considering our weakness and frailty, to preserve in ourselves the graces and treasures we have received from God”: 1. Because we have this treasure, which is worth more than heaven and earth put together, in frail vessels, i.e., in a corruptible body and in a weak and inconstant soul, which a mere nothing disturbs and dejects: “We have this treasure in earthen vessels.” (2 Cor. 4:7).

    “88. 2. Because the devils, who are skillful thieves wish to surprise us unawares, and to strip us. They watch us day and night for the favorable moment. For that end they go round about us incessantly to devour us and to snatch from us in one moment, by a sin, all the graces and merits we have gained for many years.

    “89. 3. It is difficult to persevere in justice because of the strange corruption of the world. The world is now so corrupt it seems inevitable that religious hearts should be soiled, if not by its mud, at least by its dust; so that is has become a kind of a miracle to anyone to remain in the midst of that impetuous torrent without being drawn in by it, in the midst of that stormy sea without being drowned in it or stripped by the pirates and the corsairs, is the midst of that pestilent air without being infected by it. It is the Virgin, alone faithful, in whom the serpent has never had any part, whoworks this miracle who serve he in that sweet way which I have shortly to unfold.”

  12. admin says:

    Chapter III – “Choice of True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin”

    Article One – False Devotions to the Blessed Virgin and False Devotees –
    92. “I find seven kinds of false devotees and false devotions to Our Lady, namely: 1. the critical devotees 2. the scrupulous devotees; 3. the external devotees; 4. the presumptuous devotees; 5 the inconstant devotees; 6. the hypocritical devotees; 7. the interested devotees”

    I. Critical Devotees

    93. “The critical devotees are, for the most part, proud scholars, rash and self sufficient spirits, who have at heart some devotion to the holy Virgin, but who criticize nearly all practices of devotion which simple people and pray simply and holily to their good Mother, because these practices do not fall with their own honor and fancy. They call into doubt all the miracles and pious stories recorded by authors worthy of faith, or drawn from the chronicals of religious orders: narratives which testify to us the mercies and power of the most holy Virgin”.

  13. admin says:

    II. Scrupulous Devotees

    94. “The scrupulous devotees are those who fear to dishonor the Son by honoring the Mother, to abase the one in elevating the other. They cannot bear that we should attribute to Our Lady the most just praise which the holy Fathers have given her. It is all they can do to endure that there should be more people before the altar of the Blessed Virgin than before the Blessed Sacrament – as if one were contrary to the other, as if those who prayed to our the Blessed Lady did not pray to Jesus though her.”

    95. “The church with the Holy Ghost, blesses Our Lady first and Our Lord second: “Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb Jesus.” It is not that Mary is more than Jesus or even equal to Him—that would be an intolerable heresy; but it is that, in order to bless Jesus more perfectly, we must begin by blessing Mary.”

  14. admin says:

    III. External Devotees

    96. “External devotees are persons who make all devotions to our Blessed Lady consist in outward practices. They have no taste except for the exterior of this devotion, because they have no interior spirit of their own.”

  15. admin says:

    IV. Presumptuous Devotees

    97. “Presumptuous devotees are sinners abandoned to their passions, or lovers of the world, who under the name of Christians and clients of our Blessed Lady conceal pride, avarice, impurity, drunkenness, anger, swearing, detraction, injustice or some other sin. The sleep in peace in the midst of their bad habits, without doing any violence to themselves to correct their faults, under the pretext that they are devout to the Blessed Virgin. They promise themselves that God will pardon them; that they will not be allowed to die without confession; and that they will not be lost eternally because the say the rosary….” ”

  16. admin says:

    V. Inconstant Devotees

    101. “The inconstant devotees who are devout to out Blessed Lady by fits and starts. Sometimes they are fervent and sometimes they are lukewarm. Sometimes they seem ready to anything for her, and then a little while afterward, they are not like the same people.”

  17. admin says:

    VI. Hypocritical Devotees

    102. “We still have to mention the false devotees to our Blessed Lady who are the hypocritical devotees, who cloak their sins and sinful habits with her mantle, in order to be taken by men for what they are not.”

  18. admin says:

    VII. Interested Devotees

    103. “There are also the interested devotees, who have recourse to Our Lady only to gain some lawsuit, or to avoid some danger, or to be cured of some illness, or for some other similar necessity, without which they would forget her altogether. All these are the false devotees, pleasing neither to God not to His holy mother.” (St. Louis De Montfort – “True Devotion to Mary”).

  19. admin says:

    Article Two – True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin –

    I. Characteristics

    105. “After having laid bare and condemned the false devotions to the most Holy Virgin, we must, in a few words, give the characteristics of true devotion. It must be 1. interior, 2. tender, 3. holy, 4. constant, and disinterested.”

  20. admin says:

    1. Interior

    106. “ True devotion to Our Lady is interior; that is, it comes from the mind and the heart. It flows from the esteem we have for her, and the high idea we have formed of her greatness, and the love which we have for her.”

  21. admin says:

    2. Tender

    107. “It is tender; that is, full of confidence in her, like a child’s confidence in his loving mother. This confidence make the soul have recourse to her in all its bodily and mental necessities, with much simplicity, trust and tenderness.”

  22. admin says:

    3. Holy

    108. “True devotion to Our Lady is holy; that is to say, it leads the soul to avoid sin and to imitate the virtues of the Blessed Virgin, particularly her profound humility, her lively faith, her blind obedience, her continual prayer, her universal mortification, her divine purity, her ardent charity, her heroic patience, her angelic sweetness and her divine wisdom. These are the ten principles of the most holy Virgin.”

  23. admin says:

    4. Constant

    109. “True devotion to Our Lady is constant. It confirms the soul in good, and does not let it easily abandon it spiritual practices. It makes it courageous in opposing the world in its fashions and maxims, the flesh in its weariness and passions, and the devil in his temptations; so that our person truly devout to our Blessed Lady is neither changeable, irritable, scrupulous or timid”.

  24. admin says:

    5. Disinterested

    110. Lastly, true devotion to Our Lady is disinterested; that is to say, it inspires the soul not to seek itself but only God, and God in His holy Mother. A true client of Mary does not serve that August Queen from a spirit of lucre and interest, nor for his own good, whether temporal or eternal, corporal or spiritual, but exclusively because she deserves to be served, and God alone in her. He does not love Mary just because she obtains favors for him, or because he hopes she will, but solely because she is so worthy of love. It is on this account that he loves and serves her as faithfully in his disgusts and dryness as in his sweetness and sensible favors. He loves her as much on Calvary as at the marriage of Cana.”

  25. admin says:

    111. “I have now said many things about the most holy Virgin; but I have many more say, and there are infinitely more which I shall omit, either from ignorance, inability or want of time, in unfolding the plan for forming a true client of Mary and a true disciple of Jesus Christ.”

  26. admin says:

    112. “ Oh, but my labor will have been well expended if this little writing, falling into the hands of a soul of good dispositions – a soul well-born of God and of Mary, and not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, not of the will of man (Jn. 1: 13) – should unfold to him, and should by the grace of the Holy Ghost inspire him with the excellence and the value of that true and solid devotion to our Blessed Lady which I am going to presently describe. If I knew that my guilty blood could serve in engraving on anyone’s heart the truths which I am writing in honor of my true Mother and Sovereign Mistress, of whose children and slaves I am the least, I would use my own blood instead of ink to form the letters, in the hope of finding some good souls who, by their fidelity to the practice which I teach, should compensate my dear Mother and Mistress for the losses which she has suffered through my ingratitude and infidelities.”

  27. admin says:

    113. “I feel myself more than ever encouraged to believe and hope for the fulfillment of all that I have deeply engraven upon my heart of have asked of God these many years, namely, that sooner or later the Blessed Virgin shall have more children, servants and slaves of love than ever, and by this means, Jesus Christ, my dear Master, shall reign in more hearts then ever before.”

  28. admin says:

    114. “I clearly see that raging beasts shall come in fury to tear with the diabolical teeth this little writing and him whom the Holy Ghost has made use of to write it – or at least to smother it in the darkness and silence of a coffer, that it may not appear. They shall even attack and persecute those who shall read it and carry it out in practice. But what matter? On the contrary so much the better! This very foresight encourages me, and makes me hope for great success, that is to say, for a great squadron of brave and valiant servants of Jesus and Mary, of both sexes, to combat the world, the devil and corrupted human nature, in those more than ever perilous times which are about to come. “He who reads, let him understand.” (Matt. 24:15). “He who can receive it, let him receive it.” (Matt 19:12).”

  29. admin says:

    II. Practices

    1. Common practices both interior and exterior

    115. “There are several interior practices of true devotion to the Blessed Virgin. Here are the principal ones, stated compendiously: 1) to honor her as the worthy Mother or God, with the worship of hyperdulia, that is to say, to esteem and honor her above all the other saints, as the masterpiece of grace, and the first after of Jesus Christ, true God and true man; 2) to meditate on her virtues, her privileges and her actions; 3) to contemplate her grandeurs; 4) to make acts of love, of praise of gratitude to her; 5) to invoke her cordially; 6) to offer ourselves to her and unite ourselves with her; 7) to do all our actions with the view of pleasing her; 8) to begin, to continue and to finish all, our actions by her, in her, with her and for her, in order that that we may do them by Jesus Christ, in Jesus Christ, with Jesus Christ and for Jesus Christ our Last End.”

  30. admin says:

    116. “True devotion to Our Lady also has several exterior practices, of which the following are the principal ones: 1) to enroll ourselves in her confraternities and enter her congregations; 2) to join the religious orders instituted in her honor; 3) to proclaim her praises; 4) to give alms, to fast and to undergo outward and inward mortifications in her honor; 5) to wear her liveries, such as the Rosary, the Scapular or the little chain; 6) to recite with attention, devotion and modesty the holy Rosary; 7) to sing, or have sung, spiritual canticles in her honor;”

  31. admin says:

    117. “There are numerous other practices of true devotion toward the Blessed Virgin which the Holy Ghost has inspired in saintly souls and which are very sanctifying; they can be read at length in the Paradise Open to Pilgrims of Father Barry, the Jesuit, in which he has collected a great number of devotions which the saints have practiced in honor of Our Lady — devotions which serve marvelously to sanctify our souls, provided the are practiced as they out to be, 1) with a good and pure intention to please God only, to unite ourselves to Jesus Christ as our Last End, and to edify our neighbor; 2) with attention and without voluntary distraction; 3) with devotion, equally avoiding precipitation and negligence; 4) with modesty, and a respectful and edifying posture of the body.”

  32. admin says:

    118. “But after all, I loudly protest that, having read nearly all the books which profess to treat of devotion to Our Lady, and having conversed familiarly with the best and wisest of men of these latter times, I have never known nor heard of any practice of devotion toward her at all equal to the one which I now wish to unfold; demanding from the soul, as it does, more sacrifices for God, ridding the soul more and more of itself and of its self love, keeping it more faithfully in grace and grace more faithfully in it, uniting it more perfectly and more easily to Jesus Christ; and finally, being more glorious to God, more sanctifying to the soul and more useful to our neighbor than any other of the devotions to her.”

  33. admin says:

    119. “As the essential element of this devotion consists in the interior which it ought to form, it will not be equally understood by everybody. Some will stop at what is exterior in it, and will go no further, and these will be the greatest number. Some, in small number, will enter into its inward spirit; but they will only mount one step. Who will get as far as the third? Lastly, who will so advance as to make this devotion his habitual state? He alone to whom the Spirit of Jesus Christ shall have revealed this secret, the faultlessly faithful soul whom he shall conduct there Himself, to advance from virtue to virtue, from grace to grace, from light to light, until he arrives at the transformation of himself into Jesus Christ, and to the plenitude of His age on earth and of His glory in Heaven.”

  34. admin says:

    Article One
    A Perfect and Entire Consecration of Oneself to the Blessed Virgin

    121. “This devotion consists, then, in giving ourselves entirely to Our Lady, in order to belong entirely to Jesus through her. We must give her 1) our body with all its senses and members; 2) our soul, with all its powers; 3) our exterior goods of fortune, whether present or to come; 4) our interior and spiritual goods, which are our merits and our virtues, and all our good works, past, present and future. In a word, we must give her all we have in the order of nature and in the order of grace, and all that may become ours in the future, in the order of nature, grace and glory; and this we must do without the reserve of so much as one farthing, one hair, or one least good action; and we must do it also for all eternity; and we must do it, further, without pretending to, or hoping for, any other recompense for our offering and service except the honor of belonging to Jesus Christ through Mary and in Mary – as though that sweet mistress we not (as she always is) the most generous and the most grateful of all creatures.”

  35. admin says:

    122. “Here we must note that there are two things in the good works we perform, namely, satisfaction and merit; in other words, their satisfactory or impetratory value, and their meritorious value. The satisfactory or impetratory value of a good action is that action inasmuch as it satisfies for the pain due to sin or obtains some new grace; the meritorious value, or the merit, is the good action inasmuch as it merits grace now and eternal glory hereafter.Now, in this consecration of ourselves to Our Lady, we give her all the satisfactory, impetratory, and meritorious value of our actions, in other words, the satisfactions and the merits of all or good works.”

  36. admin says:

    123. “It follows from this that:”

    “1) By this devotion we give to Jesus Christ in the most perfect manner, inasmuch as it is by Mary’s hands, all we can give Him, and far more than by any other devotions in which we give Him either part of our time, or part of our good works, or part of our satisfactions or mortifications; because here everything is given and consecrated to Him, even the right of disposing or our interior goods and of our satisfactions which we gain by our good works day after day. This is more than we even do in a religious order.”

  37. admin says:

    “In religious orders we give God the goods of fortune by the vow of poverty, the goods of the body by the vow of chastity, our own will by the vow of obedience, and sometimes the liberty of the body by the vow of cloister. But we do not by these vows give Him the liberty or right to dispose of the value of all our good works; and we do not strip ourselves as far as a Christian man or woman can do so, of that which is dearest and most precious, namely, our merits and satisfactions.”

  38. admin says:

    124. 2 “A person who is thus voluntarily consecrated and sacrificed to Jesus Christ through Mary can no longer dispose of the value of any of his good actions. All he suffers, all he thinks, all the good he says or does, belongs to Mary, in order that she may dispose of it according to the will of her Son and His greatest glory—without, however, that dependence interfering in any with the obligations of the state we may be in at present or may be placed in for the future; for example, without interfering with the obligations of a priest who, by his office or otherwise, ought to apply the satisfactory and impetratory value of the Holy Mass to some private person. For we make the offering of this devotion only according to the order of God and the duties of our state.”

  39. admin says:

    123. 3 “We consecrate ourselves at one and the same time to the most holy Virgin and to Jesus Christ; to the most holy Virgin as to the perfect means which Jesus Christ has chosen whereby to unite Himself to us, and us to Him; and to Our Lord as to our Last End, to whom, as our Redeemer and our God, we owe all we are.”

  40. admin says:

    Article Two
    A Perfect Renewal of the Vows of Baptism

    126. “I have said that this devotion might be rightly called a perfect renewal of the vows or promises of baptism.

    For every Christian, before his baptism, was the slave of the devil, seeing that he belonged to him. He has in his Baptism, by his own mouth or by his sponsor’s, solemnly renounced Satan, his pomps and his works; and he has taken Jesus Christ as his Master and Sovereign Lord, to depend upon Him in the quality of a slave of love”.

  41. admin says:

    127. “Men, says St. Thomas, make a vow at their Baptism to renounce the devil and all his pomps. This vow, says St. Augustine, is the greatest and most indispensible of all vows. It is this also thus that the canonists speak: “The principle vow is the one we make at Baptism.” Yet who has kept this great vow? Who is it that faithfully performs the promises of holy Baptism.”

  42. admin says:

    128. “This is so true that the Council of Sens, convoked by the order of Louis the Debonair to remedy the disorders of Christians, which were then so great, judged that the principal cause of the corruption of morals arose from the oblivion and the ignorance in which men lived of the obligations of holy Baptism; and it cold think of no better means of remedying so great an evil than to persuade Christians to renew the vows and promises of Baptism.”

  43. admin says:

    129. “The catechism of the Council of Trent, the faithful interpreter of that holy Council exhorts the parish priests to do the same thing, and to induce the people to remind themselves, and to believe, that they are bound and consecrated as slaves to Our Lord Jesus Christ, their Redeemer and their Lord. These are it’s words: “The parish priest shall exhort the faithful people so that they may know that it is most just … that we should devote and consecrate ourselves forever to our Redeemer and Lord as His very slaves.”

  44. admin says:

    131. “No one can object to this devotion as being either a new or an indifferent one. It is not new, because the Councils, the Fathers and many authors both ancient and modern speak of this consecration to Our Lord, or renewal of the vows and promises of Baptism, as of a thing practiced and which they council to all Christians. Neither is it a matter of indifference, because the principal source of all disorders, and consequently of the eternal perdition of Christians, comes from their forgetfulness and indifference about this practice.”

  45. admin says:

    132. “But some may object that this devotion, in making us give to Our Lord, by Our Lady’s hands, the value of all our good works, prayers, mortifications and alms, puts us in a state of incapacity for assisting the souls of our parents, friends and benefactors. I answer them as follows:”
    132.1 “That it is not credible that our parents, friends and benefactors should suffer from the fact of our being and consecrated without exception to the service of Our Lord and His Holy Mother.”

    132.2 “This practice does not hinder us from praying for others, whether dead or living, although the application of all our good works depends on the will of Our Blessed Lady. On the contrary, it is this very thing which will lead us to pray with more confidence; just as a rich person who has given all his wealth to his prince in order to honor him the more, would beg the prince all the more confidently to give alms to one of his friends who should ask for it.”

  46. admin says:

    133. Someone may perhaps say, “If I give to our Blessed Lady all the value of my actions to apply to whom she wills, I may have to suffer a long time in purgatory”.

    This objection, which comes from self-love and ignorance of the generosity of God and His holy Mother refutes itself. A fervent and generous soul who gives God all he has, without reserve, so that he can do nothing more; who lives only for the glory and reign or Jesus Christ, through His holy Mother, and who makes an entire sacrifice to bring it about – will this generous and liberal soul, I say, be more punished in the other world because it has been more liberal and disinterested than others? Far, indeed will that be from the truth! Rather, it is toward that soul, as we shall see by what follows, that our Lord and His holy Mother are the most liberal in this world and in the other, in the orders of nature, grace and glory.

  47. admin says:

    134. But we must now, as briefly as we can, run over the motives, which ought to recommend this devotion to us, the marvelous effects it produces in the souls of the faithful, and its practices.

  48. admin says:

    Chapter II
    Motives of the Perfect Consecration
    — First Motive —
    It Devotes Us Entirely to Service of God

    135. The first motive, which shows us the excellence of this consecration of ourselves to Jesus Christ by the Hands of Mary.

    If we can conceive on earth no employment more lofty than the service of God – if the least servant of God is richer, more powerful and more noble than all the kings and emperors of this earth, unless they are also the servants of God — what must be the riches, the power and the dignity of the faithful and perfect servant of God. Who is devoted to his services entirely and without reserve to the utmost extent possible? Such is the faithful and loving slave of Jesus in Mary who has given himself up entirely to the service of the King of Kings, by the hands of His holy Mother, and has reserved nothing for himself. Not all the gold of the earth not all the beauties can repay him.

  49. admin says:

    136. “The other congregations, associations and confraternities erected in honor of Our Lord and His holy Mother, which do such immense good in Christendom, do not make us give anything without reserve. They prescribe to their members only certain practices and actions to satisfy their obligations. They leave them free for all other actions and moments and occupations. But this devotion makes use give makes us give to Jesus and Mary, without reserve, all out thoughts, words actions and sufferings, every moment of our life, in such wise that whether we wake or asleep, whether we eat or drink, whether we do great actions or very little ones, is always true to say that whatever we do, even without thinking of it, by virtue of our offering — at least if has not been intentionally retracted — done for Jesus and Mary. What a consolation this is!”

  50. admin says:

    137. “Moreover, as I have already said, there is no other practice equal to this for enabling us to rid ourselves easily of a certain proprietorship which imperceptibly creeps into our best actions. Our good Jesus gives us this great grace in recompense for the heroic and disinterested action of giving over to Him, by the hand of His holy Mother, all the value of our good works. If he gives a hundredfold even in this world to those who, for His love, quit outward and temporal and perishable goods (Matt. 19:29), what will that hundredfold be which He will give to man who sacrifices for Him even his inward and spiritual goods.”

  51. admin says:

    138. “Jesus our great Friend, has given Himself us without reserve, body and soul, virtues, graces and merits. “He has bought the whole of me with the whole of Himself,” says St. Bernard. Is it not then a simple matter of justice and of gratitude that we should give Him all that we can give Him? He has been the first to be liberal toward us, at least, be the second: and then, in life death and eternity, we shall find Him still more liberal. “With the liberal he will be still more liberal”.

  52. admin says:

    — Second Motive —
    It Makes Us Imitate The Example of Jesus Christ
    and of the Holy Trinity and Practice Humility

    139. “The second motive, which shows us how just it is in itself, and how advantageous to Christians, to consecrate themselves entirely to the Blessed Virgin by this practice, in order to belong more perfectly to Jesus Christ”.

    “This good master did not disdain to shut Himself up in the womb of the Blessed Virgin, as a captive and a loving slave, and later to be subject and obedient to her for thirty years. It is here, I repeat, that the human mind loses itself, when it seriously reflects on the conduct of the Incarnate Wisdom who willed to give himself to men – not directly, though He might have done so, but through the Blessed Virgin. He did not will to come into the world at the age of a perfect man, independent of others, but like a poor little babe, dependent on the care and support of this Holy Mother. He is that infinite and Wisdom who had a boundless desire to glorify God His Father and to save men; and yet He found no more perfect means, no shorter way to do it, than to submit himself in all things to the Blessed Virgin, not only during the first eight, ten or fifteen years of His life, like other children, but for thirty years! He gave more glory to God His Father during all that time of submission to and dependence on our Blessed Lady than He would have given him if He had those thirty years in working miracles, in preaching to the whole world and in converting all men – all of which He would have done, could he have thereby contributed more to God’s glory. Oh how highly we glorify God, when after the example of Jesus, we submit ourselves to Mary!”

  53. admin says:

    140. “Let us recall here, as a proof the dependence we ought to have on our Blessed Lady, what I have said above in bringing forward the example which the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost give of this dependence. The Father has not given and does not give, His Son, except by her; He has no children but by her, and communicates no graces but through her. The Son has not been formed for the whole world in general, except by her and He is not daily formed and engendered except by her, in union with the Holy Ghost; neither does He communicate His merits and virtues except through her. The Holy Ghost has not formed Jesus Christ except by her; neither does He form the members of Our Lord’s Mystical Body except by her; and through her alone does He dispense His favors and His gifts. After so many and such pressing examples of the Most Holy Trinity, can we without extreme blindness dispense with Mary, can we fail to consecrate ourselves to her for the purpose of going to God and sacrificing ourselves to God?”

  54. admin says:

    141. “Here are some passages of the Fathers which I have chosen to prove just what I have said:”
    “Mary has two sons, a God man and a pure man: she is the mother of the first corporally, and of the second spiritually.”

    “This is the will of God, who wished us to have all things through Mary; if, therefore, there is in us any hope, any grace, any salutary gift, we know it comes to us through her.”

    “All the gifts, virtues and graces of the Holy Ghost are distributed by Mary, to whom she wishes, when she wishes, the way she wishes and as much as she wishes.”

    “Since you were unworthy the receive the divine graces, they were given to Mary, so that whatever you would have, you would receive through her.”

    142. “God says St. Bernard, seeing that we are unworthy to receive His graces immediately from His own hand, gives them to Mary, in order that we may have through her whatever He wills to give us; and He also finds His glory in receiving, through the hands of Mary, the gratitude, respect and love which we owe Him for His benefits. It is most just, then, that we imitate this conduct of God, in order, as the same St. Bernard says, that grace return to its Author by the same channel through which it came: “That grace should return to the Giver by the same channel through which it came.”

    “This is precisely what our devotion does, we offer and consecrated all we are and all we have to the Blessed Virgin in order that Our Lord may receive through her mediation the glory and gratitude that we owe Him. We acknowledge ourselves unworthy and unfit to approach His Infinite Majesty by ourselves; and it is on this account that we avail ourselves of the intercession of the Most Holy Virgin”.

  55. admin says:

    143. “Moreover, this devotion is a practice of great humility, which God loves above all other virtues. A soul which exalts itself abases God; a soul which abases itself exalts God. God resists the proud and gives His grace to the humble. If you abase yourself, thinking yourself unworthy to appear before Him and to draw nigh to Him, He descends and lowers Himself to come to you, to take pleasure in you and to exalt you in spite of yourself. On the contrary, when you are bold enough to approach God without a mediator God flies from you and you cannot reach Him. Oh, how He loves humility of heart! It is to this humility that this devotion induces us, because it teaches us never to draw nigh, of ourselves, to Our Lord, however sweet and merciful He may be, but always to avail ourselves of the intercession of our Blessed Lady, whether it be to appear before God, or to speak to Him, or to offer Him anything, or to unite and consecrate ourselves to Him”.

  56. admin says:

    — Third Motive —
    It Obtains for Us The Good Offices of The Blessed Virgin

    I. Mary Gives Herself to Her Slave of Love

    144. The most holy Virgin, who is a Mother of sweetness and mercy, and who never lets herself be outdone in love and liberality, seeing that we give ourselves entirely to her, to honor and to serve her, and for that end strip ourselves of all that is dearest to us, in order to adorn her, meets us in the same spirit. She also gives her whole self, and gives it an unspeakable manner, to him who gives all to her. She causes him to be engulfed in the abyss of her graces. She adorns him with her merits; she supports him with her power; she illuminates him with her light; she inflames him with her love; she communicates to him her virtues; her humility, her faith, her purity and the rest. She makes herself his bail, his supplement, and his dear all towards Jesus. In a word, as that consecrated person is all Mary’s, so Mary is all his, and after such a fashion that we can say of that perfect servant and child of Mary what St. John the Evangelist said of himself, that he took the holy Virgin for his own: “The disciple took her or his own.” (Jn. 19:27).

    145. It is this which produces in the soul, if it is faithful, a great distrust, contempt and hatred of self, and a great confidence in self abandonment to the Blessed Virgin, its good Mistress. A man no longer, as before, relies on his own dispositions, intentions, merits, virtues and good works; because having made an entire sacrifice of them to Jesus Christ by that good Mother, he has but one treasure now, where all his goods are laid up, and that no longer is in himself, for his treasure is Mary.”

    That is what makes him approach Our Lord without servile or scrupulous fear, and pray to Him with great confidence. This is what makes him share the sentiments of the devout and learned Abbot Rupert, who, alluding to the victory that Jacob gained over the angel (Gen. 32:24), said to our Blessed Lady these beautiful words: “O Mary, my Princess, Immaculate Mother of the God-Man, Jesus Christ, I desire to wrestle with that Man, namely the Divine Word, not armed with my own merits but with yours.”

    Oh, how strong and mighty we are with Jesus Christ when we are armed with the merits and intersession of the worthy Mother of God, who, as St. Augustine says, has lovingly vanquished the Most High.

  57. admin says:

    II. Mary Purifies Our Good Works, Embellishes Them and Makes Them Acceptable to Her Son

    146. As by this practice we give to Our Lord, by His Mother’s hands, all our good works, that good Mother purifies them, embellishes them and makes them acceptable to her Son.

    &1. She purifies them of all the stain of self-love, and of that imperceptible attachment to created things which slips unnoticed into our best actions. As soon as they are in her most pure and fruitful hands, those same hands, which have never been sullied or idle and which purify whatever they touch, take away from the present which we give her all that was spoiled or imperfect about it.
    147. & 2. She embellishes our works, adorning them with her own merits and virtues. It is as if a peasant, wishing to gain the friendship and benevolence of the king, went to the queen and presented her with a fruit which was his whole revenue, in order that she might present it to the king. The queen, having accepted the poor little offering from the peasant, would place the fruit on a large and beautiful dish of gold, and so, on the peasants behalf, would present it to the king. Then the fruit, however unworthy in itself to be a king’s present, would become worthy of his majesty because of the dish of gold on which rested and the person who presented it.

  58. admin says:

    148. & 3. She presents these good works to Jesus Christ; for she keeps nothing of what is given her for herself, as if she were our last end. She faithfully passes it all on to Jesus. If we give to her, we give necessarily to Jesus. If we praise her or glorify her, she immediately praises and glorifies Jesus. As of old when St. Elizabeth praised her, so now when we praise her and bless her, she sings: “My soul doth magnify the Lord.” (Lk. 1:46).

  59. admin says:

    149. She persuades Jesus to accept these good works, however little and poor the present may be for the Saint of Saints and that King of Kings. When we present anything to Jesus by ourselves, and relying on our own dispositions, Jesus examines the offering, and often rejects it because of the stains it has contracted through self-love, just as of old He rejected the sacrifices of the Jews when they were full of their own will. But when we present Him anything by the pure and virginal hands of His well beloved, we take Him by His weak side, if it is allowable to use such a term. He does not consider so much the thing that is given to Him as the Mother who presents it. He does not consider so much when the offering comes, as by whom it comes. Thus Mary, who is never repelled but always well received, makes everything she presents to Him, great or small, acceptable to His Majesty. Mary has but to present it for Jesus to be to accept it and be pleased by it. St. Bernard used to give to those he conducted to perfection this great counsel: “When you want to offer anything to God, take care to offer it by the most agreeable and worthy hands of Mary, unless you wish to have it rejected.”

  60. admin says:

    150. Is not this what nature itself suggests to the little with regard to the great, as we have already seen. Why should not grace lead us to do the same thing with regard to God, who is infinitely exalted above us and before whom we are less than atoms – especially since we have an advocate so powerful that she is never refused, so ingenious that she knows all the secret ways of winning the heart of God; and so good and charitable that she repels no one, however little and wretched he may be.

    I shall speak further on of the true figure of these truths in the story of Jacob of Rebecca.

  61. admin says:

    — Fourth Motive —
    It Is An Excellent Means of Procuring God’s Greater Glory

    151. This devotion, faithfully practiced, is an excellent means of making sure that the value of all our good works shall be employed for the greater glory of God, Scarcely anyone acts for that noble end, although we are all under an obligation to do so. Either we do not know where the greater glory is to be found, or we do not wish to find it. But our Blessed Lady, to whom we cede the value and merit of our good works, knows most perfectly where the greater glory of God is to be found, and as much as she never does anything except for the greater glory of God, a prefect servant of that good Mistress, who is wholly consecrated to her, may say with the hardiest assurance that the value of all his actions, thoughts and words is employed for the greater glory of God, unless he purposely revokes this offering. Is there any consolation equal to this for a soul who loves with a pure and disinterested love, and who prizes the glory and interest of God far beyond his own?

  62. admin says:

    152. This devotion is an easy, short, perfect and secure way of attaining union with Our Lord, in which union the perfection of a Christian consists.

    152.1 It Is an Easy Way

    It is an easy way. It is the way in which Jesus Christ himself trod in coming to us, and in which there is no obstacle in reaching Him. It is true that we can attain divine union by other roads: but it is by many more crosses and strange deaths, and with many more difficulties, which we shall find it hard to overcome. We must pass through many obscure nights, through combats, through strange agonies, over craggy mountains, through cruel thorns and over frightful deserts. But by the path of Mary we pass more gently and more tranquilly.

    We do find, it is true, great battles to fight, and great hardships to master; but that good Mother makes herself so present and so near to her faithful servants, to enlighten them in their darkness and in their doubts, to strengthen them in their fears, and to sustain them in their struggles and their difficulties, that in truth this virginal path to find Jesus Christ is a path of roses and honey compared to other paths. There have been some Saints, but they have been in small numbers, who have walked upon this sweet path to go to Jesus, because the Holy Ghost, faithful spouse of Mary, by a singular grace disclosed is to them. Such were St. Ephrem, St John Damascene, St Bernard, St. Bernadine, St. Bonaventure, St. Francis de Sales and others. But the rest of the saints, who are the greater number, although they have all had devotion to our Blessed Lady, nevertheless have either not at all, or at least very little, entered upon this way. That is why they have had to pass through ruder and more dangerous trials.

  63. admin says:

    153. How is it, then, some of the faithful servants of Mary will say to me, that the faithful servants of the good Mother have so many occasions of suffering, nay, even more than others who are not so devout to her? They are contradicted, they are persecuted, they are calumniated, the world cannot endure them, or again, they walk in interior darkness and in deserts where there is not the least drop of the dew of Heaven. If this devotion to our Blessed Lady makes the road to Jesus easier, how is it that they who follow it are the most despised of men?

    154. I reply that it is quite true that the most faithful servants of the Blessed Virgin, being also her greatest favorites, receive from her the greatest graces and favors of Heaven, which are crosses. But I maintain that it is also the servants of Mary who carry these crosses with more ease, more merit and more glory. That which would stay the progress of another a thousand time over, or perhaps make him fall, does not once stop their steps, but rather enables them to advance; because that good Mother, all full of grace and the unction of the Holy Ghost, prepared her servants crosses with so much maternal sweetness and pure love as to make them gladly acceptable, no matter how bitter they may be in themselves; and I believe that a person who wishes to be devout, and to live piously in Jesus Christ and consequently to suffer persecutions and carry his cross daily, either will never carry great crosses, or will not carry them joyously or perseveringly, without a tender devotion to Our Lady, without the sweetmeat and confection of crosses; just as a person would not be able to eat unripe fruits without a great effort which he could hardly keep up, unless they had been preserved in sugar.

  64. admin says:

    II. It Is a Short Way

    155. This devotion to our Blessed Lady is a short road to find Jesus Christ, both because it is a road from what which we do not stray, and because, as I have just said, it is a road we tread with joy and facility, and consequently with promptitude. We make more progress in a brief period of submission to and dependence on Mary than in whole years of following our own will and relying upon ourselves. A man obedient and submissive to Mary shall sing the signal victories which he shall gain over his enemies. (Prov. 21:28). They will try to hinder his advancing, or to make him retrace his steps or fall; this is true. But with the support, the aid and the guidance of Mary he shall advance with giant strides toward Jesus, without falling, without drawing back one step, without even slackening his pace, along the same path by which he knows (Ps. 18:6) that Jesus also came to us with giant strides and in the briefest space of time.

  65. admin says:

    156. Why do you think Jesus lived so few years on earth, and of those few years, spent nearly all of them in subjection and obedience to His Mother? The truth is that, being perfected in a short time (Wis. 4:13), He lived a long time—longer than Adam, whose fall he had come to repair, although the patriarch lived more than 900 years. Jesus Christ lived a long time because He lived in complete subjection to His holy Mother, and closely united with her, in order that he might this obey His Father. For (1) the Holy Ghost says that a man who honors his mother is like a man who layeth up a treasure; that is to say, he who honors Mary, his Mother, to the extent of subjecting himself to her and obeying her in all things, will soon become exceedingly rich, because he is every day amassing treasures by the secret of that touchstone: “He who honors his mother is one who lays up a treasure” (Ecclus. 3:5); (2) because, according to a mystical interpretation of the inspired text, “My old age is to be found in the mercy of the bosom” (Ps. 91:11), it is in the bosom of Mary, which has surrounded and engendered a perfect man (Jer. 31:22) , and has had the capacity of containing Him whom the whole could neither contain nor comprehend” – it is, I say, in the bosom of Mary that they who are youthful become elders in light, in holiness, in experience and in wisdom, and that we arrive in a few years at the fullness of age of Jesus Christ.

  66. admin says:

    III. It Is a Perfect Way

    157. This practice of devotion to our Blessed Lady is also a perfect path by which we go and unite ourselves to Jesus; because the divine Mary is the most perfect and the most holy of all creatures, and because Jesus, who has come to us most perfectly, took no other road for His great and admirable journey. The Most High, the Incomprehensible, the Inaccessible, He Who is, has willed to come to us, little worms of earth who are nothing. How has He done this? The Most High has come down to us perfectly and divinely, by the humble Mary, without losing anything of His divinity and sanctity. So it is by Mary that the very little ones are to ascend perfectly and divinely, without any fear to the Most High. The Incomprehensible has allowed Himself to be comprehended and perfectly contained by the little Mary, without losing anything of His immensity. So also it is by the little Mary that we must let ourselves be contained and guided perfectly without any reserve. The Inaccessible has drawn near to us and united Himself closely, perfectly and even personally to our humanity, by Mary, without loosing anything of His majesty. So it is also by Mary that we must draw near to God and unite ourselves perfectly and closely to His majesty without fear of being repulsed. In a word, He who is has willed to come to that which is not, and to make that which is not, become He who is; and He has done this perfectly in giving Himself and subjecting Himself entirely to the young Virgin Mary, without ceasing to be in time He who is from all eternity. In like manner, it is by Mary that we, who are nothing, can become like to God by grace and glory, by giving ourselves to her so perfectly and entirely as to be nothing in ourselves, but everything in her, without fear of delusion.

  67. admin says:

    158. Make for me, if you will, a new road to go to Jesus, and pave it with the merits of the blessed, adorn it with all their heroic virtues, illuminate and embellish it with all the lights and beauties of the angels, and let all the angels and saints be there themselves, to escort, defend and sustain those who are ready to walk there; and yet in truth, in simple truth, I say boldly, and I repeat that I say truly, I would prefer to this new, perfect path the immaculate way of Mary. “He made my path blameless.” (Ps. 17:33). It is the way without stain or spot, without original or actual sin, without shadow or darkness. When my sweat Jesus comes a second time on earth in His glory, as is most certain He will do, to reign there. He will choose no other way for His journey than the divine Mary, by whom he chose to come the first time so surely and so perfectly. But there will be a difference between His first and His last coming. The first time He came secretly and hiddenly; the second time He will come gloriously and resplendently. But both times He will come perfectly, because both times He will come by Mary. Alas! Here is a mystery which is not understood. “Here let all tongues be mute”.

  68. admin says:

    IV. It Is A Secure Way

    159. This devotion to our Blessed Lady is also a secure way to go to Jesus and to acquire perfection by uniting ourselves to him.

    It is a secure way, because the practice I am preaching is not new. Father Boudon, who died a short time ago in the odor of sanctity, says in a book which he composed on this devotion that it is so ancient that we cannot fix precisely the date of its beginning. It is, however, certain that for more than seven hundred years we find traces of it in the church.

    St. Odilon, the Abbot of Cluny, who lived about the year 1040, was one of the first who publicly practiced it in France, as told in his life.

    Peter Cardinal Damian relates that in the year 1016 Blessed Marino, his brother made himself a slave of the Blessed Virgin in the presence of his director in a most edifying manner. He put a rope around his neck, took the discipline, and laid on the altar a sum of money, as a token of his devotedness and consecration to Our Lady; and he continued this devotion so faithfully during his whole life that he deserved to be visited his good Mistress, and to receive from her mouth the promise in recompense for his services.

    Caesarius Bollandus mentions an illustrious knight, Valtier de Birbac, a near relative of the Duke of Louvain, who about the year 1300 consecrated himself to the Blessed Virgin.

    This devotion was also practiced by several private individuals up to the seventeenth century, when it became public.

  69. admin says:

    160. Father Simon de Roias, of the Order of the Most Holy Trinity, known as the Order of Redemption of Captives, and preacher of Phillip III, made this devotion popular in Spain and Germany, and at the request of Phillip III, obtained of Gregory XV ample indulgences for those who have practices it.

    Father de Los Rios, the Augustinian, devoted himself, with his intimate friend, Father de Roais, to spreading this devotion throughout Spain and Germany both by preaching and by writing. He composed a thick volume called Hierarchia Mariana, in which he treats with as much piety as learning of the antiquity, excellence and solidity of this devotion.

  70. admin says:

    161. In the seventeenth century the Theatine Fathers established this devotion in Italy, Sicily in Savoy.

    Father Stanislaus Phalacius, the Jesuit, furthered the devotion wonderfully in Poland.

    Father de Los Rios, in his work just cited, quotes the names of princes, princesses, bishops and cardinals of different kingdoms, who embraced this devotion.

    Cornelius a Lapide, as praiseworthy for his piety as for his profound erudition, having been commissioned by several bishops and theologians to examine this devotion, did so with great thoroughness and deliberation, and praised it in a manner which we might have expected from his well known piety; and many other distinguished persons have followed his example.

    The Jesuit Fathers, always zealous in the service of our Blessed Lady, in the name of the Sodalists of Cologne presented a little treatise on this devotion to Duke Ferdinand of Bavaria, who was then Archbishop of Cologne. He approved it, granted permission for its printing, and exhorted all the parish priests and religious of his diocese to promote this solid devotion as much as they could.

  71. admin says:

    162. Cardinal De Berulle, whose memory is held in veneration throughout all France, was one of the most zealous in spreading this devotion in that country, in spite of all the calumnies and persecutions which he suffered from critics and freethinkers. They accused him of novelty and superstition. They wrote and published a libel against him, in order to defame him; and they, or rather the devil by their ministry, made use of a thousand artifices to hinder his spreading this devotion in France. But that great and holy man only answered their calumnies by his patience; and he met the objections contained in their libel by a short treatise in which he most convincingly refuted them. He showed them that the devotion was founded on the example of Jesus Christ, on the obligations which we have toward Him, and on the vows which we have made in holy Baptism. It was chiefly by means of this last reason that he shut his adversaries’ mouths, making them see that this consecration to the holy Virgin and to Jesus Christ by her hands, is nothing else than a perfect renewal of the vows and promises of Baptism. He has said many beautiful things about this practice, which can be read in his works.

  72. admin says:

    163. We also see in Father Boudon’s book the different Popes who have approved this devotion, the theologians who have examined it, the persecutions it has undergone and has overcome, and the thousands of persons who have embraced it, without any Pope ever having condemned it. Indeed, we cannot see how it could be condemned without overturning the foundations of Christianity.

    It is clear then that this devotion is not new; and that if it is not common, that is because it is too precious to be relished and practiced by everyone.

  73. admin says:

    164. This devotion is a secure means of going to Jesus Christ, because it is the very characteristic of our Blessed Lady to conduct us surely to Jesus, just as it is the very characteristic of Jesus to conduct us surely to the Eternal Father. Spiritual persons, therefore, must not fall into the false belief that Mary can be a hindrance to them in attaining the divine union; for is it possible that she who has found grace before God for the whole world in general and for each on in particular, should be a hindrance to a soul in finding the great grace of union with Him? Can it be possible that she who has been full and super-abounding with graces, so united and transformed into God that it has been a kind of necessity that He has been incarnate in her, should be a stumbling-block in the way of a soul’s perfect union with God?

    It is quite true that the view of other creatures, however holy, may perhaps at certain times retard divine union. But this cannot be said of Mary, as I have remarked before and shall never weary of repeating. One reason why so few souls come to the fullness of the age of Jesus Christ is that Mary, who is as much as ever the Mother of the Son, and as much as ever the faithful spouse of the Holy Ghost, is not sufficiently formed in their hearts. He who wishes to have the fruit of life, Jesus Christ, much have the tree of life, which is Mary; he who wishes to have in himself the operation of the Holy Ghost must have His faithful and inseparable spouse, the divine Mary, who makes Him fertile and fruit-bearing, as we have said elsewhere.

  74. admin says:

    165. Be persuaded, then, that the more you look at Mary in prayers, contemplations, actions and sufferings, if not with a distinct and definite view, at least with a general and imperceptible one, the more perfectly you will find Jesus Christ, who is always, with Mary, great powerful and active and incomprehensible – more than in Heaven or in any other creature. Thus, so far from the divine Mary, all absorbed in God, being an obstacle to the perfect in attaining union with God, there has never been up to this time, and there will never be, any creature who will aid us more efficaciously in this great work; either by the graces she will communicate to us for this purpose – for, as a saint has said, “No one can be filled with the thought of God except by Her” – or by the protection she will afford against the illusions and trickeries of the evil spirit.

  75. anonymous says:

    I just discovered your blog through this post. Are you aware that St. Louis-Marie de Montfort’s favorite Marian book has now been translated into English?

  76. admin says:

    Thank you very much for your post. I will buy and read it. Peace and all good to you!

  77. admin says:

    166. Where Mary is, there the evil spirit is not. One of the most infallible marks we can have of our being conducted by the good spirit is our being very devout to Mary, thinking often of her and speaking often of her. This last is the thought of a saint, who adds that as respiration is a certain sign the body is not dead, the frequent thought and loving invocation of Mary is a certain sign the soul is not dead by sin.

  78. admin says:

    167. As it is Mary alone, says the Church (and the holy Ghost who guides the church), who makes all heresies come to naught — “Thou alone have destroyed all heresies of the whole world” — we may be sure that, however critics may grumble, no faithful client of Mary will ever fall into heresy or illusions, or at least formal ones. He may very well err materially, take falsehood for truth, and evil sprit for the good; and yet he will do even this less readily than others. But sooner or later he will acknowledge his material fault and error; and when he knows it, he will not be in any way self-opinionated by continuing to believe and maintain he had once thought was true.

  79. admin says:

    168. Whoever, then, wishes to put aside the fear of illusion, which is the besetting timidity of men of prayer, and to advance in the way of perfection and surely and perfectly find Jesus Christ, let him embrace with great heartedness— “with a great heart and willing mind” (2 Mach. 1:3)— this devotion to our Blessed Lady which he has perhaps not known before; let him enter into this excellent way which was unknown to him before; let him enter into this excellent way which was unknown to him and which I point out now: “I show you a more excellent way.” (I Cor. 12:31). It is a path trodden by Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom, our sole Head. One of His members cannot make a mistake in passing by the same road.

    It is an easy road, because of the fullness of the grace and unction of the Holy Ghost which fills it to overflowing. No one wearies there; no one walking there ever has to retrace his steps. It is a short road which leads us to Jesus in a little time. It is a perfect road, where there is no mud, no dust, not the least spot of sin. Lastly, it is a secure road, which conducts us to Jesus Christ and life eternal in a straight and secure manner, without turning to the right and to the left. Let us, then, set forth upon that road and walk there day and night, until we come to the fullness of the age of Jesus Christ. (Eph. 4:13).

  80. admin says:

    — Sixth Motive —
    It Gives Us Great Interior Liberty

    169. This practice of devotion gives to those who make use of it faithfully a great interior liberty, which is the liberty of the children of God. (Rom. 8:21). Since, by this devotion, we make ourselves slaves of Jesus Christ and consecrate ourselves entirely to Him in this capacity, our good Master, in recompense for the loving captivity in which we put ourselves, (1) takes from the soul all scruple and servile fear, which are capable only of cramping, imprisoning or confusing it; (2) He enlarges the heart with firm confidence in God, making it look upon Him as Father; and (3) He inspires us with a tender and Filial love.

  81. admin says:

    170. Without stopping to prove these truths with arguments, I shall be content to relate here what I have read in the life of Mother Agnes of Jesus, a Dominican nun of the convent of Langeac, in Auvergne, who died there in an odor of sanctity in the year 1634. When she was only seven years old, and was suffering from great spiritual anguish, she heard a voice which told her that if she wished to be delivered from her anguish, and to be protected against all her enemies, she was as quickly as possible to make herself the slave of Jesus and His holy Mother in this capacity, although up to that time she did so much as know what the devotion meant. Taking an iron chain, she put it around her body and wore it until her death. After this, all her scruples and anguish ceased, and she experienced great peace and dilation of heart. This is what brought her to teach the devotion to so many persons who made great progress in it – among others, Father Olier, the founder of St. Sulpice, as well as many other priests and ecclesiastics of the same seminary. One day Our Lady appeared to her and put around her neck a chain of gold, to show her the joy she had at Mother Agnes having made herself her Son’s slave and her own; and St. Cecilia, who accompanied Our Lady in that apparition, said to the religious; “Happy are the faithful slaves of the Queen of Heaven for they shall enjoy true liberty”.

    “To serve thee is liberty”.

  82. admin says:

    — Seventh Motive —
    It Procures Great Blessings for Our Neighbor

    171. Another consideration which may bring us to embrace this practice is the great good which our neighbor receives from it. For by this practice we exercise charity toward him in an eminent manner, seeing that we give him by Mary’s hands all that is most precious to ourselves – namely, the satisfactory and impetratory value of all our good works, without excepting the least good thought or the least little suffering. We agree that all the satisfactions we may have acquired, or may acquire up to the moment of our death, should be employed at Our Lady’s will either for the conversion of sinners or for the delivering of souls from Purgatory.

    Is this not loving our neighbor perfectly? Is this not being a true disciple of Jesus Christ, who is always to be recognized by His charity? (Jn. 13:35). Is this not the way to convert sinners, without any fear of vanity; and to deliver souls from Purgatory, with scarcely doing anything but what we are obliged to do by our state of life?

  83. admin says:

    172. To understand the excellence of this motive, we must understand also how great a good it is to convert of sinner or deliver a soul from Purgatory. It is an infinite good, greater than creating Heaven and earth, because we give to a soul the possession of God. If by this practice we deliver but one soul in our life from Purgatory, or convert but one sinner, would that not be enough to induce a truly charitable man to embrace it?

    But we must remark that, inasmuch as our good works pass through the hands of Mary, they receive an augmentation of purity, and consequently of merit, and of satisfactory and impetratory value. On this account they become more capable of solacing the souls in Purgatory and of converting sinners than if they did not pass through the virginal and liberal hands of Mary. It may be little that we give by Our Lady; but, in truth, if it is given without self-will and with a disinterested charity, that little becomes very mighty to turn away the wrath of God and to draw down His mercy. It would be no wonder if, at the hour of death, it should be found that a person faithful to this practice should by means of it have delivered many souls from Purgatory and converted many sinners, though he should have done nothing more than the ordinary actions of his state of life. What joy at his judgment! What glory at his eternity!

  84. admin says:

    — Eight Motive —
    It Is and Admirable Means of Perseverance

    173. Lastly, that which in some sense most persuasively draws us to this devotion to Our Lady is that it is an admirable means of preserving and being faithful in virtue. Whence comes it that the majority of the conversions of sinners are not durable? Whence comes it that we relapse so easily into sin? Whence comes it that the greater part of the just, instead of advancing from virtue to virtue and acquiring new graces, often loose the little virtue and little grace they have? This misfortune comes, as I have shown before, from the fact that man is so corrupt, so feeble and so inconstant, and yet trusts in himself, relies on his own strength and believes himself capable of safeguarding the treasure of his graces, virtues and merits.

    But by this devotion, we entrust all that we possess to the Blessed Virgin, who is faithful; we take her for the universal depositary of all our goods of nature and of grace. It is in her fidelity that we trust; it is her power that we lean; it is on her mercy and charity that we build, in order that she may preserve and augment our virtues and merits, in spite of the devil, the world and the flesh, who put forth all their efforts to take them from us. We say to her as a good child to his mother, and a faithful servant to her Mistress: “Keep that which is commended to your trust. (1 Tim. 6:20). My good Mother and Mistress, I acknowledge that up to this time I have, through your intercession, received more graces from God than I deserve; and my sad experience teaches me that I carry this treasure in a frail vessel, and that I am too week and too miserable to keep it safely of myself: ‘I am very young and despised’ (Ps. 118:141); I beseech you, therefore, receive in trust all that I possess, and keep it for me buy your fidelity and power. If you keep it for me, I shall loose nothing, if you hold me up I shall not fall, if you protect me, I shall be sheltered from my enemies.”

  85. admin says:

    174. Listen to what St. Bernard says to encourage us to adopt this practice: “When Mary holds you up, you do not fall; when she protects you, you need not fear; when she leads you, you do not tire; when she is favorable to you, you arrive at the harbor of safety.” St. Bonvanture seems to say the same thing still more clearly. “The Blessed Virgin,” he says, is not only retained in the plenitude of the saints, but she also retains and keeps the saints in their plenitude, so that it may not diminish. She prevents their virtues from being dissipated, their merits from perishing, their graces from being lost, the devil from harming them, and even our Lord from punishing them when they sin”.

  86. admin says:

    175. Our Blessed Lady is the faithful Virgin who by her fidelity to God repairs the losses which the faithless Eve caused by her infidelity. It is she who obtains for those who attach themselves to her the graces of Fidelity to God and perseverance. It is for this reason that a saint compares her to a firm anchor which holds her servants fast and hinders them from being shipwrecked in the agitated sea of this world, where so may persons perish simply from not being fastened to that anchor. “We fasten our souls”, says he, “to thy hope, as to an abiding anchor.” It is to her that the saints who have saved themselves have been most attached and have done their best to attach others, in order to persevere in virtue. Happy, then, a thousand times happy, are the Christians who are now fastened faithfully and entirely to her, as to a firm anchor! The violence of the storms of this world will not make them founder, nor sink their heavenly treasures! Happy those who enter into Mary, and into the ark of Noe! The waters of the deluge of sin, which drown so great a portion of the world, shall do no harm to them; for “They who work in me shall not sin,”, says Mary, together with the Divine Wisdom. (Ecclus. 24:30). Blessed are the faithless children of the unhappy Eve, if only they attach themselves to the faithful Mother and Virgin who “remains always faithful and never belies herself. “She always loves those who love her” (Prov. 8:17) — not only with an effective love, but with an effectual and efficatious one, by hindering them, through a great abundance of graces, from drawing back in the pursuit of virtue, from falling in the road, and from losing the grace of her Son.

  87. admin says:

    176. This good mother, out of pure charity, always receives whatever we deposit with her—and what she has once received as a depository, she is obliged in justice, by virtue of the contact of trusteeship, to keep safe for us; just as a person with whom I left a thousand dollars in trust would be under obligation of keeping them safe for me, so that if, by his negligence, they were lost, he would in justice be responsible to me for them. But the faithful Mary cannot let anything which has been entrusted to her be lost through her negligence. Heaven and earth could pass away sooner than she could be negligent and faithless to those who trust in her.

  88. admin says:

    177. Poor children of Mary, your weakness is extreme, your inconstancy is great, your inward nature is very much corrupted. You are drawn (I grant it) from the same corrupt mass as all the children of Adam and Eve. Yet do not be discouraged because of that. Console yourselves and exult in having the secret which I teach you–a secret unknown to almost all Christians, even the most devout.

    Leave not your gold in silver in coffers, which have already been broken open by the evil spirits who have robbed you. These coffers are too little, too weak, too old, to hold a treasure so precious and so great. Put not the pure and clear water of the fountain into your vessels, all spoilt and infected by sin. If the sin is there no longer, at least the odor of it is, and so the water will be spoilt. Put not your exquisite wines into your old casks which have had bad wine in them; else even these wines will be spoilt and perhaps break the casks, and be spilled on the ground.

  89. admin says:

    178. Though you, predestinate souls, understand me well enough, I will speak yet more openly. Trust not the gold of your charity, the silver of your purity, the waters of your heavenly graces, nor the witness of your merits and virtues to a torn sack, an old and broken coffer, a spoilt and corrupted vessel like yourselves, else you will be stripped by robbers—that is to say, the demons—who are seeking and watching night and day for the right time to do it; and you infect by our own bad odor of self-love, self-confidence and self-will, every most pure thing which God had given you.

    Pour, pour into the bosom and heart of Mary all your treasures, all your graces and all your virtues. She is a spiritual vessel, she is a vessel of honor, she is a singular vessel of devotion. Since God Himself has been shut up in person, with all His perfections, and that vessel, it has become altogether spiritual, and the spiritual abode of the most spiritual souls. Is has become honorable and the throne of honor for the grandest princes of eternity. It has become wonderful in devotion, and a dwelling the most illustrious for sweetness, for graces and for virtues. It has become rich as a house of gold, strong as a tower of David, and pure as a tower of ivory.

  90. admin says:

    179. Oh, how happy is the man who has given everything to Mary, and has entrusted himself to Mary, and has lost himself in her, in everything and for everthing! He belngs all to Mary, and Mary belongs all to him. He can say boldly with David: “Mary is made for me” (Cf. Ps. 118-56); or with the beloved disciple: “I have taken her for my own” (Jn. 19:27); or with Jesus Christ: “All that I have is thine, and all that hast is Mine.” (Jn. 17:10).

  91. admin says:

    180. If any critic who reads this shall take it into his head that I speak here exaggeratedly, and with an extravagance of emotion, alas! He does not understand me—either he is a carnal man who has no relish for spiritual things; or because he is a worldling who cannot receive the Holy Ghost; or because he is proud and critical, condemning and despising whatever he does not understand himself. But the souls which are not born of blood, nor of flesh, nor of the will of man (Jn 1:13), but of God and Mary, understand me and relish me—and it is for these that I also write.

  92. admin says:

    181. Nevertheless. I say now, both for the former and for the latter, in returning from this digression, that the divine Mary, being the most gracious and liberal of all pure creatures, never lets herself be outdone in love and liberality. As a holy man said of her, for an egg she gives an ox; that is to say, for a little that is given to her, she gives much of what she has received from God. Hence, if a soul gives itself to her without reserve, she gives herself to that soul without reserve, if we only put our confidence in her without presumption, and on our side labor to acquire virtues and bridle our passions.

  93. admin says:

    182. Then let the faithful servants of the Blessed Virgin say boldly with St. John Damascene. “Having confidence in you, O Mother of God, being under your protection, I shall fear nothing; with your help I shall give battle to my enemies and put them to flight; for devotion to you is an arm of salvation which God gives to those it whom it is His will to save.”

  94. admin says:

    183. Of all the truths which I have been explaining with regard to our Blessed Lady and her children and her servants, the Holy Ghost gives us an admirable figure in the Scriptures (Gen. 27). It is the story of Jacob, who received the blessing of his father Isaac through the skill and pains of his mother Rebecca. This is the story as the Holy Ghost relates it. I will afterward add the explanation of it.

  95. admin says:

    — Article One —
    Rebecca And Jacob

    I. The Biblical Narrative

    184. Esau having sold Jacob his birthright, Rebecca, the mother of two brothers, who loved Jacob tenderly, secured this advantage of the birthright for him many years afterward by a stroke of skill most holy but most full of mystery. Isaac, feeling very old, and wishing to bless his children before he died, called his son Esau, who was his favorite and commanded him to go out hunting and get him something to eat, in order that afterword he might bless him. Rebecca promptly informed Jacob of what had passed, and ordered him to go out and take two kids from the flock. When he had given them to his mother, she prepared for Isaac what she knew he liked. She clothed Jacob in the Garments of Esau, which she kept, and covered his hands and his neck with the skin of the kids, so that his father, who was blind, even though he heard Jacob’s voice, might think by touching the skin of his hands that it was Esau.

    Isaac, having been surprised by the voice, which he thought was Jacob’s voice, made him come near. Having touched the skins with which his hands were covered, he said that voice was truly the voice of Jacob, but the hands were the hands of Esau.

    After he had eaten, and, in kissing Jacob, had smelt the odor of his perfumed garments, he blessed him and wished for him the dew of heaven and the fruitfulness of earth. He made him lord over all his brethren, and finished his blessing with these words: “Cursed be he that curseth thee, and let him that blesseth thee be filled with blessings.”

    Isaac had hardly finished these words when Esau entered, bringing with him what he had captured while out hunting in order that he might eat it, and bless him. The holy patriarch was surprised with an incredible astonishment when he understood what had happened. But far from retracting what he had done, on the contrary he confirmed it, for he saw plainly that the finger of God was in the matter. Esau then uttered great cries, as the holy scripture says, and loudly accusing the deceitfulness of his brother, he asked his father if he had but one blessing. I this conduct of his, as the holy fathers remark, Esau was the image of those who are only too glad to ally God with the world and would fain enjoy both the consolations of Heaven and the consolations of earth. At last Isaac, touched with the cries of Esau, blessed him, but with a blessing of the earth, subjecting him to his brother. This made him conceive such an envenomed hatred for Jacob that he waited only for his father’s death in order to attempt to kill him. Nor would Jacob have escaped death if his dear mother Rebecca had not saved him from it by her efforts and by the counsels which she gave him, and which he followed.

  96. admin says:

    II. Interpretation

    185. Before explaining this beautiful story, we must observe that, according to the holy Fathers and the interpreters of Scripture, Jacob is the figure of Jesus Christ and the predestinate, and Esau that of the reprobate. We have but to examine the actions and conduct of each to be convinced of this.

    1. Esau, figure of the reprobate.

    (1) Esau, the elder, was strong and robust of body, adroit and skilled in drawing the bow and in taking much game in the chase. (2) He hardly ever stayed in the house; and putting no confidence in anything but his own strength and address, he worked only out of doors. (3) He took very few pains to please his mother Rebecca, and indeed did nothing for that end. (4) He was a glutton and loved eating so much that he sold his birthright for a mess of pottage. (5) He was, like Cain, full of envy against his brother, and persecuted him beyond measure.

    186. Now this is the daily conduct of the reprobate. They trust in their own strength and aptitude for temporal affairs. They are very strong, very able and very enlightened in earthly business, but very weak and very ignorant in heavenly things.

  97. admin says:

    187. It is on this account that they are never at all, or at least very seldom, at their own homes—that is to say, in their own interior, which is the inward and essential house which God has given to every man, to live there, after His example, for God always dwells in Himself. The reprobate do not love retirement, nor spirituality, nor inward devotion; and they treat as little, or as bigots, or as savages, those who are interior or retired from the world, and who work more within than without.

  98. admin says:

    188. The reprobate care next to nothing for devotion to our Blessed Lady, the Mother of the predestinate. It is true that they do not hate her formally. Indeed they sometimes praise her and say they love her, and even practice some devotion in her honor. Nevertheless, they cannot bear that we should love her tenderly, because they do not have the tenderness of Jacob for her. They find much to say against the practice of devotion her good children and servants faithfully perform in order to gain her affection, because they not think that devotion necessary for salvation; and they consider that, provided they do not hate Our Lady formally or openly despise her devotion, they do enough. Moreover, they imagine they are already in her good graces, and that, in fine, they are her servants, inasmuch as they recite and certain prayers in her honor, without tenderness for her or amendment in themselves.

  99. admin says:

    189. The reprobate sell their birthright, that is to say, the pleasures of paradise. They sell it for a pottage on lentils, that is to say, for the pleasures of the earth. They laugh, they eat, they drink, they amuse themselves, they gamble, they dance, and take no more pains than Esau did to render themselves worthy of the blessing of their Father. In a word, they think only of earth and they love earth only; they speak and act only of earth and for its pleasures, selling for one moment of enjoyment, for one vain puff of honor, for a morsel of hard metal, yellow or white, their Baptismal grace, their robe of innocence and their heavenly inheritance.

  100. admin says:

    190. Finally, the reprobate daily hate and persecute the predestinate, openly and secretly. They feel the predestinate are a burden to them, they despise them, they criticize them, they ridicule them, they abuse them, they rob them, they cheat them, they impoverish them, they drive them away, they bring them low into the dust; while they themselves are making fortunes, are taking their pleasures, getting themselves into good positions, enriching themselves, becoming greater and living at their ease.

  101. admin says:

    2. Jacob, figure of the predestinate.

    (a) Conduct of Jacob

    191. As to Jacob, the younger son, he was of a feeble constitution, meek and peaceful. He lived for the most part at home, in order to gain the good graces of his mother Rebecca, whom he loved tenderly. If he went abroad it was not of his will, nor through any confidence in his own skill, but to obey his mother.

  102. admin says:

    192. He loved and honored his mother. It was on this account that he kept at home. He was never so happy as when watching her. He avoided everything that could displease her, and did everything which he thought would please her; and this increased the love which Rebecca already had for him.

  103. admin says:

    193. He was subject in all things to his dear mother. He obeyed her entirely in all matters—promptly without delaying, and lovingly, without complaining. At the least indication of her will, the little Jacob ran and worked; and he believed without questioning, everything she said to him. For example, when she told him to fetch two kids in order that she might prepare something for his father Isaac to eat, Jacob did not reply that one was enough to make a dish for a single man, but did without argument what she told him to do.

  104. admin says:

    194. He had great confidence in his dear mother. As he did not rely in the least on his own ability, he depended exclusively on her care and protection. He appealed to her in all his necessities and consulted her in all his doubts. For example, when he asked if, instead of a blessing, he should not receive a curse from his father, he believed her and trusted her when she said that she would take the curse upon herself.

  105. admin says:

    195. Lastly, he imitated as far as he could the virtues he saw in his mother. It seems as if one of his reasons for living such a sedentary life at home was to imitate his dear mother, who was virtuous and kept away from bad companions who corrupt the morals. By this means he made himself worthy of receiving the double blessing of his father.

  106. admin says:

    a) Conduct of The Predestinate
    196. Such also is the conduct which the predestinate daily observe.
    They are sedentary and homekeepers with their Mother. In other words they love retirement and are interior. They give themselves to prayer; but it is after the example and in the company of their Mother, the holy Virgin, the whole of whose glory is within, and who during her entire life loved retirement and prayer so much. It is true that they sometimes appear without, in the world; but it is in obedience to the will of God and that of their dear mother, to fulfill the duties of their state. However apparently important their outward works may be, they esteem still more highly those which they do within themselves, in their interior, in the company of the Blessed Virgin. For it is within that they accomplish the great work of their perfection, compared with which all their other works are but child’s play. It is on this account that, while sometimes their brothers and sisters are working outwardly with much energy, success and skill, in the praise and approbation of the world, they on the contrary know by the light of the Holy Ghost that there is far more glory, more good and more joy in remaining hidden in retreat with Jesus Christ their Model, in an entire and perfect subjection to their Mother, that to do of themselves wonders of nature and grace in the world, as so many Esaus and reprobates do. “Glory to God and riches for men are to be found in the house of Mary.” (Cf. Ps. 111:3).

  107. admin says:

    197. The predestinate tenderly love and truly honor our Blessed Lady as their good Mother and Mistress. They love her not only in word but in truth. They honor her not only outwardly but in the depths of their hearts. They avoid, like Jacob, everything which can displease her; and they practice with ferver whatever they think will find favor with her. They bring to her and give her, not two kids, as did Jacob to Rebecca, but their body and their soul, with all that depends on them, symbolized by the two kids of Jacob. They bring them to her: (1) that she may receive them as things which belong to her; (2) that she may kill them, that is, make them die to sin and self, by striping them of their own skin and their own self-love, so as by this means to please Jesus, her Son, who wills not to have any for His disciples and friends but those who are dead to themselves; (3) that she may prepare them for the taste of our heavenly Father, and for His greatest glory, which she knows better than any other creature; and (4) that by her care and intercession this body and soul, thoroughly purified from every stain, thoroughly dead, thoroughly stripped and prepared, may be a delicate meat, worthy of the mouth and blessing of the heavenly father. Is this not what the predestinate to, who by way of testifying to Jesus and Mary an effective and courageous love, relish and practice the prefect consecration to Jesus Christ by the hands of Mary which we are now teaching them?

    The reprobate tell us loudly enough that they love Jesus and that they love and honor Mary; but it is not with their substance (Prov. 3:9), it is not to the extent of sacrificing their body with its senses and their soul with its passions as the predestinate do.

  108. admin says:

    198. The predestinate are subject and obedient to our Blessed Lady as to their good Mother, after the example of Jesus Christ, who, of the three and thirty years He lived on earth, employed thirty to glorify God His Father by a prefect and entire subjection to His holy Mother. They obey Mary in following her counsels exactly as the little Jacob did those of Rebecca, who said to him: “My son, follow my counsels” (Gen 27:8); or like the people of the marriage of Cana, to whom Our Lady said “Whatever my Son shall say to you, that do” (Jn 2:5). Jacob, for having obeyed his mother, received the blessing as it were miraculously, although naturally he would not have had it. The people of the marriage of Cana, for having followed Our Lady’s counsel, were honored with the first miracle of Our Lord, who there changed the water into wine at the prayer of His holy Mother. In like manner, all those who, to the end of time, shall receive the blessing of our heavenly Father, and shall be honored with the wonders of God, shall only receive these graces as a result of their perfect obedience to Mary. The Esaus, on the contrary, lose their blessing through their want of subjection to the Blessed Virgin.

  109. admin says:

    199. The predestinate have great confidence in the goodness and power of our Blessed Lady, their good Mother. They call incessantly for her help. They look upon her as their polar star, to lead them to a good port. They lay bare to her their troubles and their necessities with much openness of heart. They depend on her mercy and gentleness, in order to obtain pardon for their sins through her intercession, or to taste her maternal sweetness in their troubles and weariness. They even throw themselves, hide themselves and lose themselves in an admiral manner in her loving and virginal bosom, that they may be enkindled there with the fire of pure love, that they may be cleansed there from their least stain, and fully find Jesus who dwells there as on His most glorious throne. Oh what happiness! “Think not,” says Abbot Gueric, “that it is happier to dwell in Abraham’s bosom than in Mary’s, for it is in this last that Our Lord has placed His throne.”
    The reprobate, to the contrary put all their trust in themselves. They only eat with the prodigal, what the swine eat. They eat earth like the toads, and like the children of the world, they love only visible and exterior things. They have no relish for the sweetness of Mary’s bosom. They have not that feeling of a certain resting place and a sure confidence, which the predestinate find in the holy Virgin, their good Mother. They are miserably attached to their outward hunger, as St. Gregory says, “because they do not wish to taste the sweetness which is prepared within yourselves, and within Jesus and Mary”.

  110. admin says:

    200. Lastly, the predestinate keeps the ways of our Blessed Lady, their good mother; that is to say they imitate her. It is on this point that they are truly happy and truly devout, and bear the infallible mark or their predestination, according to the words this good Mother speaks to them: Blessed are they who practice my virtues (Prov. 8:32), and with the help of divine grace walk in the footsteps of my life. During life they are happy in this world through the abundance of grace and sweetness that I impart to them from my fullness, and more abundantly to them than to others who do not imitate me so closely. They are happy in their death, which is mild and tranquil, and at which I am ordinarily present myself, that I may conduct them to the joys of eternity; for never has any one of my good servants been lost who imitated my virtues during life.
    The reprobate on the contrary are unhappy during their life, at their death and for eternity, because they do not imitate Our Lady in her virtues, but content themselves with sometime being enrolled in her confraternities, reciting some prayers in her house, or going through some other exterior devotion.

    O holy Virgin, my good Mother, how happy are those (I repeat with the transports of my heart), how happy are those who not letting themselves be seduced by a false devotion toward you, faithfully keep your ways, your counsels and your orders! But how unhappy and accursed are those who abuse your devotion, and keep not the commandments of your Son: “Cursed are all who fall from Thy commandments!” (Ps. 118:21).

  111. admin says:

    — Article Two —
    The Blessed Virgin and Her Slaves of Love

    201. Let us now turn to look at the charitable duties which our Blessed Lady, as the best of all mothers, fulfills for the faithful servants who have given themselves to her after the manner I have described, and according to the figure of Jacob.

    I. She Loves Them
    She loves them: “I love those who love me.” (Prov. 8:17). She loves them: (1) because she is their true Mother, and a mother always loves her child, the fruit of her womb; (2) out of gratitude, because they effectively love her as their good Mother; (3) because, as they are predestinate, God loves them: “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated” Rom. 9:13); (4) because they are entirely consecrated to her, and are her portion and her inheritance: “Let thy inheritance be in Israel.” (Ecclus. 24:13).

  112. admin says:

    202. “She loves them tenderly, and more tenderly than all other mothers put together. Throw, if you can, all the natural love which all the mothers of the world have for their children into the heart of one mother for only one child. Surely that mother will love that child immensely. Nevertheless, it is true that Mary loves her children still more tenderly than that mother would love that child of hers.”

    “She loves them not only with affection but with efficacy. Her love for them is active and effective, like that of Rebecca for Jacob, and far beyond it. See what this good Mother, of whom Rebecca was but the type, does to obtain for her children the blessing of our heavenly Father.”

  113. admin says:

    203. & 1. “She is on the lookout, as Rebecca was, for favorable occasions to do them good, to advance and enrich them. She clearly sees all good and all evil, all prosperous and adverse fortunes, the blessing and cursings of God; and then she disposes things from afar that she may exempt her servants from all sorts of evils, and obtain for them all sorts of blessings; so that if there is a good fortune to make by the fidelity of a creature to any high employment, it is certain that Mary will procure that good fortune for some or her true children and servants, and will give them the grace to go through it faithfully: “ She herself takes care of our interests,” says a certain saint.”

  114. admin says:

    204. & 2. “She gives them good counsels, as Rebecca did Jacob: “My son, follow my counsels.” (Gen 27:8). Among other counsels, she inspires them to bring her two kids, that is to say, their body and their soul, and to consecrate them to her, so that she may make of them a dish agreeable to God; and she inspires them to do everything which Jesus Christ her Son has taught by His words and His examples. If it is not by herself that she gives these counsels, it is by the ministry of the angels, who have no greater honor or pleasure than to descend to earth to obey any of her commands, and to help any of her servants”.

  115. admin says:

    205. & 3. When they have brought to her and consecrated to her their body and soul, and all that depends on them, without excepting anything, what does that good Mother do? Just what Rebecca did of old with the two kids Jacob brought her: (1) She kills them and makes them die to the life of the old Adam. (2) She flays and strips them of their natural skin, their natural inclinations, their self-love, their own will and all attachments to creatures. (3) She cleanses them of their spots, their vilenesses and their sins. (4) She dresses them to the taste of God, and for his greatest glory; as it is Mary alone who knows perfectly what the divine taste is, and what the greatest glory of the Most High is, it is Mary alone who, without making any mistake, can adapt and dress our body for the taste infinitely exalted, and for that glory infinitely hidden.

  116. admin says:

    206 & 4. This good Mother, having received the perfect offering which we make to her of ourselves and our merits and satisfactions, by the devotion I am describing, strips us of our old garments; she cleanses us and so makes worthy to appear before our heavenly Father. (1) She clothes us in the clean, new, precious and perfumed garments of Esau the elder – that is, of Jesus Christ her Son – which she keeps in her house, that is, which she had in her own power, inasmuch as she is the treasurer and universal dispenser of the merits and virtues of her Son, which She gives and communicates to whom she wills, when she wills, as she wills, and in as much quantity as she wills; as we have seen before. (2) She covers the neck and hands of her servants with the skins of the kids she has killed; that is to say, she adorns them with the merits and value of her own actions. She kills and mortifies, it is true, all that it is impure and imperfect in them, buy she neither loses nor dissipates one atom of the good which grace has done there. On the contrary, she preserves and augments it, to make it the ornament and strength of their neck and their hands; that is to say, to fortify them and help and them carry the yoke of the Lord, which is worn upon the neck, and to work great things for the glory of God and the salvation of their poor brethren. (3) She bestows a new perfume and a new grace upon their garments and adornments in communicating to them her own garments, that is, her merits and virtues, which she bequeathed to them by her testament when she died; as said a holy religious of the last century, who died in the odor of sanctity, and learnt this by revelation. Thus all her domestics, faithful servants and slaves, are doubly clad in he garments of her Son and in her own: “All her domestics are clothed in double clothing.” (Prov: 31:21). It is on this account that they have nothing to fear from the cold of Jesus Christ, who is as white as snow—a cold which the reprobate, all naked and stripped of the merits of Jesus and Mary, cannot for one moment bear”.

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