I didn't realize something when I consecrated myself to Mary

I love Mary just as much as the next guy but I’m a little frustrated that all the value of my prayers is ultimately up to Mary. The way I now understand it, (and should have tried harder to understand before) anything I pray for is ultimately brought to God in a form of Mary’s choosing…
So if I pray to God for world peace, Mary can change it.

Am I misunderstanding this? Can I still just pray to God, or is Mary involved in all my prayers?

When we pray to the Saints they can only learn of it if it first goes through God. It’s by His prerogative that they even have the capacity to know what’s going on on Earth. Mary’s not going to change your prayers around as if God didn’t already know what you’re asking for, she’s just going to join in the prayer with you.

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I think the issue is that you’re trying to assign a value to prayer, to quantify what it gets. We do that with indulgences symbolically, but it doesn’t really work with prayer.

When you consecrate yourself to Mary, you are accepting that, as the closest creature to God she knows how best to utilize your prayer to achieve God’s will, which is what all our prayers should ultimately be about.

If this bothers you, don’t consecrate yourself to Mary. Though, I don’t think it should, as she’s going to get the most “good” out of your prayers. She knows better than you because she is already with God. So no, the prayer might not achieve the end you want, but then, we’re never guarnateed that it will anyways. We’re only guaranteed that God will put our prayer to the most possible good.

I do understand your hesitation though. I’ve been contemplating consecrating all of my merits for the holy souls in Purgatory, rather than for my own benefit. (Incidentally, this is also done through Mary, I believe). Basically, I would be forfeiting the remission of punishment due for my sins I would gain through good works and indulgences, and it would all get distributed out to the souls already in Purgatory in need of prayer. This is frightening because as I am now I expect a rather lengthy stay in Purgatory, and that is far from ideal, but I also have to trust God that He wouldn’t accept this sacrifice without recompense… It is frightening to think of losing “control” of my merits (even if that control is only in my head to begin with), but I also know that God will do more good with it than I could. The same is true for your prayers. At the end of the day, whether it’s straight to God or through one of the saints, how efficacious our prayers are is ultimately in God’s hands.

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I don’t understand this consecration stuff. Aren’t the sacraments enough for our salvation? It’s hard for me to understand these discussions about consecration to Mary without some explanation of exactly what it is. Can somebody summarize this for me?

Remember, this book is a person’s opinions.

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A priest explained that we can always ask Mary to apply our prayers to what we are asking for.

Unless there is some huge reason not to do it (example: we pray for the soul of our deceased Aunt but she’s already in Heaven and doesn’t need the prayer), Mary will grant our request.

So don’t worry about it. I have been consecrated to Mary for several years and I pray for specific things all day and trust Mary to deal with them appropriately. Any prayer I make that isn’t specific, Mary and Jesus can decide what to do with that prayer.

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Thank you for this post. One thing though, and I know this sounds silly, but can I still pray directly to God? Oh gosh that sounds silly, but for some reason I need confirmation.

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It’s a little more than that. Fr. Gaitley is drawing on the work of St. Louis de Montfort and other theologians; he isn’t just making it up as he goes along.

Also, it’s a standard principle of consecrating yourself to Mary that you give her all your prayers and merits. If not, then why consecrate yourself to her? Trusting her to deal with your prayers is a main reason you even go through the spiritual exercise, which is optional.
This is a very old traditional practice and is in the traditional morning offering I say which is probably older than my mother let alone me.

But like I said - Mary will grant her children’s requests. She’s a good mom that way.

I do think people need to be aware of what they are doing when they consecrate themselves to Mary via the 33-day and the 9-day method, but the instructions for these consecrations generally cover this aspect in great detail like Fr. Gaitley has done.

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Of course you can. Mary will never* supersede God on the hierarchy. The point of the consecration is to entrust Mary with your prayers, not to create a secondary avenue of having them granted.

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She takes the prayers to Jesus and presents them to him.
She is our Mediatrix with Jesus, the same way Jesus is our Mediator with the Father.
I think of her putting all the prayers into a big pretty basket and carrying them to Jesus.

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Marian Consecration is an OPTIONAL spiritual practice for people who wish to be closer to Our Blessed Mother. It was originated by the great St. Louis de Montfort.

It is NOT a sacrament. It is NOT something we have to do for our salvation. It is a path of spiritual growth that some people find fruitful and fulfilling.

It is popular right now because Fr. Gaitley’s book “33 Days to Morning Glory” is easier to read than the previous ways of doing Marian consecration, which involved either a more cumbersome method developed by St. Louis de Montfort, or a more theologically complex (though shorter in days) method developed by Militia Immaculata, the group started by St. Maximilian Kolbe.

Marian Consecration is not the only form of consecration one can do.
I understand one can also consecrate onself to the Holy Angels.
And also, Fr. Calloway has just released a book on Consecration to St. Joseph, so I am planning to consecrate myself to St. Joseph also this year. (It’s okay to consecrate yourself to Mary and Joseph both.)

I find this practice helpful and beneficial as I am very devoted to Mother Mary and St. Joseph.
If somebody else doesn’t like this practice then they don’t have to do it.
It actually took me about a whole year to decide to consecrate myself to Mary because I was nervous about “not having control of my prayers”…finally one day I just did it and it was fine, I never looked back.

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Here is the consecration prayer recommended in 33 Days to Morning Glory:

I, ___________________________ , a repentant sinner, renew and ratify today in your hands, O, Immaculate Mother, the vows of my Baptism. I renounce Satan and resolve to follow Jesus Christ even more closely than before. Mary, I give you my heart. Please set it on fire with love for Jesus. Make it always attentive to his burning thirst for love and for souls. Keep my heart in your most pure Heart that I may love Jesus and the members of his Body with your own perfect love. Mary, I entrust myself totally to you: my body and soul, my goods, both interior and exterior, and even the value of all my good actions. Please make of me, of all that I am and have, whatever most pleases you. Let me be a fit instrument in your immaculate and merciful hands for bringing the greatest possible glory to God. If I fall, please lead me back to Jesus. Wash me in the blood and water that flow from his pierced side, and help me never to lose my trust in this fountain of love and mercy. With you, O Immaculate Mother - you who always do the will of God - I unite myself to the perfect consecration of Jesus as he offers himself in the Spirit to the Father for the life of the world. Amen.

It should be noted that a person says that consecration prayer ONLY after 33 days of spiritual exercises and reflection as set forth in the book.

You don’t just rattle off a prayer and say OK I’m consecrated.
It’s a serious commitment.
And you’re supposed to renew it every year. That means you repeat the 33 day or the 9 day process every year.

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Yes, @Tis_Bearself is right. I posted that to just summarize what it is. Do the preparation.

Of course, but, it does not rise to a doctrinal level. No one has to fret that Mary is going to meddle with their prayers (and I know that the author does not mean to imply that, while it seems our OP did get that idea).

Doing a Marian consecration does not rise to a doctrinal level, but a lot of what’s in the book is indeed doctrine.
Mary is our Mediatrix with Jesus, a strong example for us in her relationship to Jesus, and intercedes for us in prayer. That’s all doctrine. The book is very heavily rooted in doctrine - I just got done using it in December for my own consecration renewal.

Mary does not however meddle with our prayers. Nor does Fr. Gaitley say that she does.

And asking for Mary’s intercession, or doing a Marian consecration, does not prevent you from praying directly to God, or any of the three persons of the Trinity, or any other saint you want to ask for intercession.

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You have the option of just praying to God or involving Mary in your prayers.

When the people who choose to consecrate to Mary do so, they vow “. Mary, I entrust myself totally to you: my body and soul, my goods, both interior and exterior, and even the value of all my good actions.” They have made the decision to put all of their goods, including their prayers, in Mary’s hands.

A person could choose to not renew their consecration to Mary and retract those vows.

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Theoretically this is possible, but I find it hard to believe somebody would actually finish all 33 days (or 9 days of plowing through Kolbe’s Mary-as-Spouse-of-the-Holy-Spirit where he ends up concluding she is the quasi-incarnation of the Holy Spirit, apparently reaching his final conclusions 2 hours before he was marched off to the death camp) and then retract their consecration later.

The theology one covers in the 33 days, or the 9 days, plus the sheer effort of getting through the whole process, tends to weed out anyone who’s on the fence.

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