Mystical May

Excerpt from:  The Mystical Rose [John Henry Newman]

May, the Month of Promise and of Joy

Why is May chosen as the month in which we exercise a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin?

The first reason is because it is the time when the earth bursts forth into its fresh foliage and its green grass after the stern frost and snow of winter, and the raw atmosphere and the wild wind and rain of the early spring. It is because the blossoms are upon the trees and the flowers are in the gardens. It is because the days have got long, and the sun rises early and sets late. For such gladness and joyousness of external nature is a fit attendant on our devotion to her who is the Mystical Rose and the House of Gold.

A man may say, “True; but in this climate we have sometimes a bleak, inclement May.” This cannot be denied; but still, so much is true that at least it is the month of promise and of hope. Even though the weather happen to be bad, it is the month that begins and heralds in the summer. We know, for all that may be unpleasant in it, that fine weather is coming sooner or later. “Brightness and beautifulness shall,” in the prophet’s words, “appear at the end, and shall not lie: if it make delay, wait for it, for it shall surely come, and shall not be slack.”

May then is the month, if not of fulfillment, at least of promise; and is not this the very aspect in which we most suitably regard the Blessed Virgin, Holy Mary, to whom this month is dedicated?

Well, May has certainly been a cold, blustery, rainy month so far here in these parts. But with even just a few warm, sunny days, the trees and shrubs have buds, and our rhododendron in the corner of the garden is in full, pink bloom and gorgeousness. The wild, flowering thyme has burst out all around our Mary, and in fact has overtaken the little rock garden (you can’t even see the rocks anymore) and I’ll be surprised if any of the other little flowers can come up from underneath it. Yet I can’t bear to cut it back; at least, not yet.

We are taking the weekend (a long-weekend in Canada) away in Quebec City (with hopefully a wee sidetrip out to Ste. Anne de Beaupré). I hope my old digital will not conk out on me, and I can put up a few pictures when we get back.  Before I leave I’ll just turn the comments off here in case of spam.  Wishing you all a beautiful weekend too, a weekend of promise… and perhaps…fulfillment… 

Just To Let You Know…

…I have re-opened my other blog, Contemplative Haven, at a new site.  The previous site’s server was victimized by a malicious attack, as I have mentioned in my post today.

I have updated the links to Contemplative Haven that are in the left sidebar and on my “About” page here, but I know I won’t have time to go through all the posts of the last three years to change all the other links that may appear here, at least not right away.

Thank you for your patience…  Between techy problems and other obligations, I haven’t been around very much, but I hope to remedy that now.  🙂  

Mary In My Garden

Most of us had our young and foolish years, didn’t we, but there’s no time for regrets.  Mary is waiting.  Come and sit with Her a while.



The image of our sorrowful Mother in the previous post is a “retablo” which I found while visiting the online art site at the New Mexico State University.

From the university’s website, we learn that “the word retablo, refers to sacred images painted on sheets of tin-coated iron which depict Jesus, the Virgin Mary, saints and religious figures. This artform flourished during the nineteenth-century Mexico. The University Collection of over 1,700 art works during the nineteenth to the twentieth centuries Mexico is now the largest collection of tin retablos and related materials held by any U.S. museum.”

To see the university’s beautiful collection of retablos, please visit NMSU – The Collection. It’s well worth the visit!