Something About Mary

Something About Mary is a lovely site brought to us by Totus Tuus-Totus2us which gives us short (usually only a couple of minutes long) daily audio reflections from people all over the world about their relationship with Mary, what she means to them and sometimes little anecdotes.  I’ve been listening to the reflections at Something About Mary for quite a while now, and the variety of personal experiences and the love that is vocalized is often very moving and always uplifting and inspirational.

Yesterday, the first three I listened to each happened to have had an experience at Medjugorje as a turning point in the speakers’ lives, and in each case they said that Mary brought them to Jesus.  The fourth was from a priest of four years who reveals how his consecration to Mary has been of the greatest importance in his life.  I hope you enjoy them.  Something About Mary is a free podcast that you can listen to directly from their site or can be subscribed to through iTunes.

Number 489 – Deirdre

Number 491, Michael

Number 492, Chantal

Number 480, Fr. Nathan, CSJ

Holy Mary, Mother of God

What a very special and full day today! The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, the First Saturday of the month, the World Day of Peace, New Year’s Day, and Consecration Day for Paul of Harbour Star Reflections! May we all say a prayer for Paul today, and also in gratitude for his consecration.

Here is a lovely hymn that is printed in the Magnificat publication for today:

O Mother of almighty God,
Forever blest in all your ways,
Give us your own tranquility,
And strength and comfort all our days.

You are a strong and lovely tree,
The fruit of which is purest gold,
Whose branches spread to shelter us,
Whose quiet leaves all peace enfold.

Pray for us now and when we die,
That we may live and ever praise
The Father, Son and Spirit blest
In endless light and timeless days.

 

Yes, her “quiet leaves all peace enfold”.

The Miracle of the Sun at Fatima

Today, as we remember the miracle of the sun that took place at Fatima, I would like to share part of one of Our Lady’s messages to Father Stefano Gobbi of the Marian Movement of Priests.  The particular locution from which I quote was received on October 13, 1981 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is titled, “An Interior Wound”.

[Excerpt from: To the Priests. Our Lady’s Beloved Sons, entry no. 233, page 334]

Today you are at Lujan, in the most celebrated shrine of this great country, where I am so loved and venerated. With a cenacle, you are commemorating my last apparition at Fatima, which took place on this very day in 1917.

The entire plan which I am now carrying out was revealed to you at that time….

With the anxiety and concern of a mother, who sees how great the danger is through which you are passing, I beg you again to return to God who is awaiting you all to give you his forgiveness and his fatherly love.

See with how many signs I accompany this anguished appeal of mine!… With messages I have given and apparitions I have granted in many parts of the world, with my numerous weepings, even with blood, I want to make you understand that this is a grave hour, that the cup of divine justice is now full.

An interior wound has been inflicted on my motherly heart as I see that these extraordinary signs are neither believed in nor accepted.

What more can I do for you, my poor children, so menaced and exposed to danger?

In a final attempt to save you, I am giving you the secure refuge of my Immaculate Heart. I am calling you from every part of the world, through this work of mine, to enter into this refuge by way of your consecration.

Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today was easily one of the best days of my life.  Yesterday I finished my 33-day preparation for my second annual renewal of my consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  I also took some time to myself to pray the 33 meditations (short prayers to the Immaculate Heart of Mary) all over again, though I had prayed them one at a time for the 33-day period.

Today I attended the five-o’clock Mass at our parish.  I arrived well in advance, and renewed my consecration in the small chapel (which I have mentioned in a few posts over at Contemplative Haven), in front of the Blessed Sacrament and the picture of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and beside the icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

Then this evening, for the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we attended the eight-o’clock Mass and candlelight procession at the Notre Dame de Lourdes Grotto in Vanier (Ottawa).  I have been going to pray at this Grotto since I was a little girl, and the evening celebrations on the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary are very beautiful.

The Grotto was filled to overflowing, and my heart was so full of gratitude that so many people had come to celebrate the Assumption and to give honour to Mary.  It is not a day of obligation in Canada.  Everyone was there out of love for Mary, pure and simple.  Pure.  And simple.  After Mass, we lit our candles and processed from our seats up the hill to the Cross, with quiet song interspersed with decades of the Rosary.  (all in French, by the way.)  At the end we sang the Magnificat, and were asked to wave our candles high in the air at each verse.  I held back from going up the hill this year, so I could try to get you some photos.  I’m not very good at night photography (at least, I haven’t figured it out yet…) but there were hundreds of people holding candles, singing and praying.

My heart had been full during the whole Mass and procession, but at the end, as I stood before the statue of Our Lady, my tears really came pouring out.  It was like the veil was lifted for a few moments, out of Mary’s graciousness to me.  I felt her telling me that I was only in one little corner of one little part of the world, and that this had been going on in pockets all over the world today, and that this is what had been taking place all day today in heaven.  As some of us stood in front of Mary, still singing alleluias, holding our candles, gazing up at her with love (some with outstretched arms), I could imagine the love that will be poured out to her when she comes in the Triumph of her Immaculate Heart, to bring in the reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  I could imagine all of us all over the world with outstretched arms and faces raised to the heavens.  Yes.  I believe today was really one of the best days of my life.

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 1

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 2

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 3

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 11

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 13

Lourdes Grotto Ottawa 16

Consecration Renewal

I am approaching the second anniversary of my consecration to Mary on the Feast of the Assumption on August 15th.  I have been doing my original 33-day consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in preparation [please see the links in the sidebar re the day-to-day consecration posts if you are interested in taking this beautiful journey yourself], as I did last year for the first anniversary as well.

Although the daily prayers are a part of my regular prayer time (daily consecration to Mary), the rest of the guidance and meditations I only read sporadically throughout the year.  So, as I have been doing my 33-day annual renewal over the past few weeks, I am finding many things that resonate with me more deeply than they did the first time, based on the experiences I have had over the last two years, upon the growing intimacy of my relationship with Mother Mary, my now almost constant recourse to her, and how she has been guiding and teaching me.

I am so looking forward to the Feast of the Assumption and my consecration renewal.  Mother Mary, please continue to “guard me as your property and possession”.

A Consecration Prayer

For those of you who are making your Consecration to Mary tomorrow, on the Feast of the Annunciation, or renewing your consecration of one year ago or more, I wish you a blessed and peaceful day in the company of our Mother.  I offer up a prayer now that all the external circumstances will come to pass that you are desiring/imagining/preparing the details of in your mind for a beautiful consecration or consecration renewal day.  But we all know the pace of life, the unforeseen events, the “best laid plans of mice and men”.  So be at peace, wherever you may find yourself, with whatever circumstances may arise to change the ideal situation you have been planning.  In our humanity, we receive comfort from our external surroundings, and joy from a beautiful, calm, peaceful environment for special occasions such as this.  But Mary receives comfort from the interior workings of our hearts, joy in our interior environment.  She desires all that is beautiful for us, but understands that “perfect” settings are not always possible.  Be at peace, knowing that we can be in the company of Mary anywhere, all day, every day, forever.

Prayer of Offering to Mary (by St. Francis de Sales)

Most Holy Mary,
Virgin Mother of God,
I am unworthy to be your servant.
Yet moved by your motherly care for me
and longing to serve you,
I choose you this day
to be my Queen, my Advocate, and my Mother.
I firmly resolve ever to be devoted to you
and to do what I can
to encourage others to be devoted to you.

My loving Mother,
through the Precious Blood of your Son shed for me,
I beg you to receive me as your servant forever.
Aid me in my actions
and beg for me the grace
never by thought, word, or deed,
to be displeasing in your sight
and that of your most holy Son.
Remember me, dearest Mother,
and do not abandon me at the hour of death.

Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Today is a very special day, as we celebrate here both the Visitation and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Although Marian feasts are broken down into Solemnities, Feastdays, Memorials, “other” feasts and “local” feasts according to the liturgical calendar, they will all be treated as Feastdays in my “Categories”, because that is what they are in my heart!

To honour and celebrate the Immaculate Heart of Mary here today, I would like to share a video with you from the YouTube Channel of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate. This video, in eight minutes, encapsulates exactly how I hope to spend my day, and the rest of my life, for that matter: reflection on Mary, responding to an invitation to consecration or renewal of consecration, prayer and song. May you be blessed today!

 
O Holy and Immaculate Heart (featuring Fr. Maximilian Dean and Michael Grogan)