The Blessings of Mary
Taken from
Irish Ursulines, 1920 with IMPRIMATUR



Our Blessed Mother

One of the sweetest graces Our Lord gave us was at the close of His life when, in the person of St. John, He made His Mother ours, she who had stood by the Cross and willed the death of her Son because it was God's will. God's interests and hers were one. After the long training of the thirty years she had lived with Jesus she had no self left. Imagine what it must have been to have lived with and watched Our Lord for thirty years; how she had imbibed His spirit, and when the time of parting came, as we look into those two human faces, and human hearts, we understand that God does not want our human hearts to be crushed, but sanctified.

At some period of our life we have probably felt what it was to have a door close on us, which closed an epoch in our lives; as when that door of the cottage of Nazareth closed on Mary at her parting with her Son. Some day the door must close on us for the last time
-----when we die; and we shall then certainly make a retrospect of our lives if we have time; and the only way in which that retrospect can give us joy is, if we can truly feel that we have immolated self. Mary felt as she looked back on those thirty years that there had been no self-----all had been purely for God. After the death of Our Lord He went to give joy to the souls in Limbo; but He left His Mother in desolation; and when He arose and came to His Mother, she revelled in His joy and glory, as only one divested of self could. In proportion as she had shared His sorrow, and sufferings, and labours, she partook of His joy. It was on His account that she rejoiced.

And what has Mary done for us? She has loved us, taken joy in us, and interest in our work. From our very birth she has had her arms round us. What have we done for her? Can we look up and say sincerely: Yes, I have done something for her in my life; I have always been glad to do or say whatever could promote her honour? Still, with all this we have many times given her pain. But there is this about wrongs done to Mary
-----we may have pained her, but we have never made her angry. God created her without anger. She is a reproduction of His kindness, His mercy, His love, His compassion; but not of His justice. Even with the cruel executioners she was not angry; and when we do things that would make another mother angry, the pain we cause her only makes her turn her eyes in pity to Our Lord with a prayer for us. As she is never angry, never resents our injuries, it is a deeper motive of shame and sorrow to us if we have ever dishonoured her by our thoughts, words, or actions-----that is, if our heart is in the right place. A Saint calls her "prayerfully omnipotent," because God never refuses the prayer she makes. Once her love
has been poured out upon us it is never withdrawn; she never denies our claim, but ever looks upon us with loving compassion.

There is no misery she cannot reach, no wound she cannot heal; and if we cling to her robe, and ask her to take our hand in hers, and so lead us to her Divine Son, we shall be sure of our welcome from Him.

What an inducement this is to try to spread devotion to Our Lady. If you can succeed in making one soul love her more, if you can teach it to trust her, to lean on her, to recourse to her, what a great thing you have done! A soul that loves Mary will love chastity, and its guardian, modesty; will lead a holy life, and die a happy death. How great must be the power of Mary, when she seems able to use her "prayerful omnipotence" to turn even the free-will of man! If not, how could she promise that those who die wearing her scapular should never see eternal fire? If she has not in her hands the means of changing hearts, she would never have promised this grace
-----for salvation means dying with contrition. God will do anything to save a soul that loves His Mother, or that has loved her.


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