Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today is the Memorial of the “Queenship of Mary” and the First Reading for Mass today is taken from the Prophet Ezekiel to the “bad shepherds of Israel”. In these days of crisis for the Catholic Church, facing the terrible “cover-up” scandals invoving predatory priests, it is a sobering passage from Sacred Scripture. I hope every priest, deacon and especially bishops and the Pope hear deeply God’s Word today. See HERE
How appropriate, then is this Memorial of Mary as Queen. Mary our Mother and Model was given to us by Jesus the Good Shepherd to John in the words to the Beloved Disciple (and to us) : “Behold your Mother”. Jesus wants us to see in Mary the model for each human person to become holy as He is Holy. Mary has been given many titles and among them “Queen of the Clergy”. Let us pray for Clergy and People to her today.
We are close to the end of this Wk 1 in our preparation for Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary (or renewal of our consecration). Trustingly we look to our Good Shepherd and continue to ask the Holy Spirit through the intercession of our Mother to guide us to “true self knowledge” to open the eyes of our hearts to see ourselves as He sees us that we may repent and believe in His power to transform us. St. Louis wrote:
- … in order to empty ourselves of self, we must die daily to ourselves. This involves our renouncing what the powers of the soul and the senses of the body incline us to do. We must see as if we did not see, hear as if we did not hear and use the things of this world as if we did not use them. This is what St. Paul calls “dying daily”. Unless the grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single grain and does not bear any good fruit. If we do not die to self and if our holiest devotions do not lead us to this necessary and fruitful death, we shall not bear fruit of any worth and our devotions will cease to be profitable. All our good works will be tainted by self-love and self-will so that our greatest sacrifices and our best actions will be unacceptable to God. Consequently when we come to die we shall find ourselves devoid of virtue and merit and discover that we do not possess even one spark of that pure love which God shares only with those who have died to themselves and whose life is hidden with Jesus Christ in him. (Emphasis is mine)
Every day they should say the Litany of the Holy Spirit , … They will turn to our Blessed Lady and beg her to obtain for them that great grace which is the foundation of all others, the grace of self-knowledge. For this intention they will say each day the Ave Maris Stella and the Litany of the Blessed Virgin