"And the Virgin's name was Mary" - Luke 1:27
Yet ten days, and this month of benediction shall be over. Let us then redouble the zeal, fervour, vivacity of our petitions, during these latter days of grace, so as not to prepare for ourselves the regret of having allowed a period, in which we might have obtained everything, to pass without fruit.
There is nothing in Mary, not even her name, which is not productive of light, grace, and salvation. Wonderful is this name, magnificent and all-powerful; a fertile channel of graces to those who invoke it with tender affection; to those who hold it in veneration and pronounce it with respect, it is a lively source of consolation. All find in it a remedy in misfortune, a treasury out of which to enrich themselves, and a beacon pointing out the road to eternal life. It is terrible to hell; crushes the serpent's head, and achieves signal victories over the prince of darkness.
Holy Virgin, as your Divine Son is styled Admirable, Angel of the Council, Mighty God, Prince of the world to come, Prince of Peace, so may your name be expatiated on by interpretations apposite to it. It is said to signify Our Lady, and in becoming Mother of God you were made Mistress of all creation. It is interpreted Bitter sea, and during the Passion of your Divine Son, your soul was transfixed with the sword of sorrows foretold by Simeon. Illuminatrix , and you are the guide of poor sinners along the pilgrimage of life, bringing back the wanderers to the right path.
"Your name, O Mary," cries out Saint Bernard, "like that of Jesus, is joy to the heart, honey to the mouth, melody to the ear. No, after that of Jesus, there is no other name upon earth, or in Heaven, so prolific of grace and hope to pious souls. The name of Mary contains within it a sweet and divine perfume; when it enters a friendly heart, it diffuses a delightful odour; and such is the property of this admirable name, that though repeated a thousand times it is ever new."
"O Virgin, sublime, compassionate, and worthy of all praise, your name cannot be uttered without inflaming the heart; the bare recollection of it recreates the minds of your servants." "O Mary, the thought of your name imparts joy to the afflicted, brings back the wandering sheep to the way of salvation, and restores hope to the sinner." It is preferable to earthly riches, for it dilates hearts contracted by the sorrows of life. "The glory of your name, O Mary, is likened to oil poured out, because oil diffuses a sweet odour and feeds the flame." "Make the trial, O sinner! call upon the name of Mary, it alone suffices to heal your infirmities; nor is there any contagion so malignant as not to yield at once to the salutary influence of this name."
In fine, your name, O Mother of God, is replete with grace and benediction; it cannot be pronounced without profit to the soul. "The virtue of this name is such that it softens the most obstinate heart." "It is a delicious perfume. May the odour which exhales divine grace be secreted within our innermost heart, as within a vase well prepared, and thence shed around its salutary emanations." "May Christians be mindful frequently to invoke, with confidence and love, a name which is for them a superabounding source of grace in this life and sublime glory in the next." "Whoever will invoke your name," said our Saviour to His Blessed Mother in presence of Saint Bridget, "and trusting in you will firmly resolve to amend his life, I will give three things - contrition for his sins, the means of satisfying My justice, strength to persevere, and finally the Kingdom of Heaven." "My brethren," said the venerable Thomas a Kempis, "if you desire to be comforted in your tribulations, go to Mary, pay her your homage, invoke her, recommend yourself to her. Rejoice with Mary, weep with Mary, walk with Mary, seek Jesus with Mary. Finally, desire to live with Jesus and Mary."
Thrice daily, the children of the Church and of Mary are accustomed, all the world over, to do homage to that source and principle of their happiness, the Mystery of the Incarnation, by the recital of the Angelus. But, how often has it occurred to you, in acquitting yourself of this practice, to make it an act of thanksgiving to Jesus and Mary, for that immense benefit? Oh, had you done this, had you heartily besought Mary, every time you recited it, to enable you to penetrate the depths of this mystery of love, what light would have been imparted to you! what treasures of grace would now enrich your soul!
"Mary! O name, under whose invocation no one can be lost, be ever on my lips, ever present to my mind."
A native of Germany committed a grievous sin - shame prevented him from confessing it, and not being able to endure remorse of conscience, he resolved to drown himself, but arrived at the river, he dared not do it; he wept scalding tears and prayed God to pardon him without confession. One night he felt himself struck on the shoulders, and heard a voice tell him - "Go to confession." He went to the church, but did not confess. He heard the same voice another night; he returned to the church, but no sooner entered it than he said to himself - "I would rather die than confess this sin." He was going home, when it struck him to recommend himself first to the Blessed Virgin. Scarcely had he knelt down, than he felt himself changed. He asked for a confessor, made an avowal of his sins, shedding torrents of tears. He afterwards acknowledged that in this action he experienced more satisfaction than if he had gained all the gold of the universe.
Visit to the Blessed Sacrament
"The humble and poor servant eats his Master!"
Behold, my heart, the most incomprehensible of mysteries! O my God, what have You invented in the excess of Your love? If, at least, men received You into their souls, if they consumed their Lord with an avidity corresponding to the love with which You give Yourself! O Jesus, what have You done? To descend from Heaven, to astonish the celestial court, to multiply prodigies: annihilation, inexplicable love; and why? That you might enter a heart, cold, distracted, erring, which thanks You not, loves You not, asks nothing from You, is not enchanted at Your entrance, or grieved at Your departure! Who would believe it? How Your Heart must be wounded! O Jesus, when You come into my poor heart, touch it, wound it, soften it by an inexhaustible gift of tears. Come into this heart, and enkindle therein the furnace of a continual and ever-increasing love. I offer You, in atonement for my inability, all the tears that flowed from Your Divine Eyes, all those of Your Blessed Mother, and of all mankind. I offer You all the ardour of Your Sacred Heart, of the Heart of Mary, of the Saints, of all Your creatures, friends and enemies. Oh! why cannot I shed all these tears myself? They would be insufficient to cleanse my impure soul, to efface the shameful stain of my persevering ingratitude. Why can I not enkindle all these fires in my heart? They would not suffice to return your burning love. And I can do nothing! I do nothing!
O Mary! give me your Heart to receive my tears; mine is and always shall be unworthy to do so!
- taken from The Month of May Consecrated to the Glory of the Mother of God, The Queen of Heaven