The Rosary: A Catechism of Mary, 2020

And thus also it was that the knot of Eve’s disobedience
was loosed
by the obedience of Mary.
For what the virgin Eve had bound fast through unbelief,
this did the virgin Mary set free through faith”
(St. Augustine)

Disobedience

Among the many errors ravaging the Church today is certain independence of thought, a disobedience, a refusal of faith, echoing Lucifer’s “Non serviam”, descending in Eve’s bloodline, which in turn carried throughout time the vast flood of sins of mankind. But with the betrayal of Judas, this tide of disobedience, this refusal of faith, reached a new level, for Judas betrayed our Lord Jesus Christ from within His closest friends, with a kiss, the sign of intimacy. It is this betrayal of the intimate love of Jesus, this rejection of His love, of His grace, that characterizes this Judas papacy and its poisonous fruit.

Now please note this! Our Lord chose to remedy Eve’s disobedience by the pure and humble obedience of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is her loving “Fiat” which welcomes the Incarnation. Thus we see that disobedience, the original sin, is remedied by obedience. And that is the Rosary’s first lesson.

In an earlier post, from 2017, Obedience, the Rosary and the Passion of the Church, we cited St. Augustine and St. John Bosco that the key to disobedience is the refusal of Faith. In the present instance, the current Pan-Amazon Synod exemplifies this refusal of Faith, eclipsing the true faith with a false neo-paganism, which is but a shabby veil behind which the same old satanic marxism lurks. In whatever guise, it is a betrayal of Christ, a Judas-kiss from those who are consecrated to His service.

Now then, what are we to do to counteract this scandalous disobedience? Our Lady, Mother of the Church, has told us what we must do, beginning with praying her Holy Rosary every day. And this is because the Rosary is her way of teaching us. She leads us to Jesus, and she teaches us how best to serve Him, but most of all, how to love Him with her most pure and faithful Heart.

Appropriate here, Rorate  recently posted for Our Lady of the Rosary – a Sermon from Fongombault, “There is one presence that remains, that of Mary“. 

“Two words sum up Mary’s calling: Fiat, and Magnificat. We have to say and live them again and again. Fiat, this is a total, radical, uncompromising yes to God’s plan: let His word be done in me, be received and fruitful in me.”

That is a lovely way of reminding us that Mary’s loving acceptance of God’s will was the beginning of our salvation, the means by which Jesus, our loving Savior chose to become Man and to save us from our sins. Thus, it is fitting that our Blessed Mother chooses to begin our Rosary with the first lesson, obedience.

Obedience and the Joyful Mysteries

As we pray the rosary, meditate on Mary’s obedience as shown in her humble acceptance of God’s will at the Annunciation. Her generous obedience enabled the Incarnation, which in turn made possible Our Savior’s obedience even unto death on a cross, that we may be freed from sin. In the Second Joyful, Mary’s obedient visit to Elizabeth allowed the Christ Child to sanctify St. John the Baptist while he was yet within his mother’s womb. The Visitation shows that obedient love of God, allowing ourselves to be filled with His love, totally surrendering our wills to Him, overflows naturally to love and service to our neighbor.

The Nativity exemplifies the obedience of the Holy Family; by obeying the civil law to go to Bethlehem, Joseph and Mary also fulfilled the prophecy that Jesus would be born there. The Holy Family’s poverty models for us humble obedience manifesting itself as spiritual poverty, which yields space to God Our Father to provide for our true needs.

In the Presentation, we consider how Jesus, the Son of the Father, all pure, all perfect, yet accepted the ritual of offering the firstborn son in obedience to the Mosaic Law. And in the last Joyful Mystery, we see how Jesus, after reminding Mary and Joseph that He “must be about My Father’s business” (Luke 2, 49), returned to Nazareth with them and “was subject to them.” (Luke 2, 51).

Obedience in the Sorrowfuls

From the last Joyful Mystery, we pass to the First Sorrowful, which we discussed in our post, In the Garden of Olives, a Prayer.  This First Sorrowful Mystery carries through the theme of obedience as Jesus echoes His Mother’s words at the Annunciation with His own, ” … not as I will but as Thou wilt”. In fact, the entire Sorrowful Mysteries are a most vivid example of the virtue of obedience by the Master Himself. Sin came into the world by the “Non serviam” of the very first disobedient servant, Satan, and its power over us was only broken by the Suffering (Obedient) Servant who was wounded for our iniquities, He “was bruised for our sins; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and by His bruises we are healed”. (Isaiah 53)

Although Our Lord bore the chastisement of our peace that we may be freed from original sin and saved, we shall not receive our peace until we ourselves have followed Him up that path of blood soaked stones to our own cross. For as surely as the Glorious Mysteries follow the Sorrowful, the Resurrection can only follow the Crucifixion. It is only through the fullness of obedience that the fullness of peace may be achieved.Now take this to heart: it is only through the fullness of obedience that the fullness of peace may be achieved.

Obedience and the Passion of the Church

As we look around at this poor Church of ours, we cannot but think of that 53rd chapter of Isaiah, ” … there is no beauty in Him, nor comeliness: and we have seen Him, and there was no sightliness, that we should be desirous of Him.” The visible structure of the Church, as reflected in its shepherds is now made exceedingly unsightly, and we the members carry this burden, it is our cross, right now, in this crisis.

To the extent that we refuse this burden of reparation for the disobedience of our own shepherds, that is, to the extent that we prefer actions of our own choosing to those obedient and penitential actions commanded by the Blessed Virgin Mary and Our Lord Jesus Christ, we fail in obedience.

The Obedience of the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts

Since our Lord Jesus Christ suffered in His own pure and perfect body the greatest of pains, humiliations and ignominies in order to free us from sin, we too, must be obedient and accept whatever chastisement God’s justice demands of us, for by our obedient submission to sufferings, we unite our hearts with His Sacred Heart, not only for our own salvation, but for all sinners, especially those most in need of His mercy.

It is this generous response that is needed today. We are Mary’s Children first and so we follow her Divine Child to the Cross. And we recall her promise for those devoted to her,

“To whomever embraces this devotion, I promise salvation. These souls shall be dear to God, as flowers placed by me to adorn His throne.”

This life is but a brief span, eternity is our true home and humble obedience to Mary’s requests is our surest, safest path to heaven.

As an addendum, I have a brief essay on the Hail Mary by Saint Thomas a Kempis, which I found in an old book by Father John Ryan, “The Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary”, Dublin, 1866.

THE EXCELLENCE OF THE HAIL MARY

by St. Thomas a Kempis

Now let the pious lover of thy holy name give ear. Heaven rejoices and all the earth stands amazed, when I say ‘Hail Mary’. Satan is put to flight, and hell trembles with fear, when I say ‘Hail Mary’. Sorrow leaves me and new joy returns, when I say ‘Hail Mary’! Sloth vanishes and my heart melts with love, when I say ‘Hail Mary’! Devotion increases, hope grows strong and consolation increases, when I say ‘Hail Mary’.

For indeed so great is the sweetness of this blessed salutation, that human language is unable to express it, but it always continues higher and deeper than all creatures can fathom. Wherefore I again humbly bend my knees to thee, most holy Virgin Mary, and say, ‘Hail Mary, full of grace’. Receive, my most clement lady, Holy Mary, this most devout salutation, and receive me in it, that I may have something pleasing and grateful to thee, which may inspire me with confidence in thee, which may inflame me with greater love for thee, and may preserve in me constant devotion to thy venerable name.

Would that I may be able to repeat this most sweet salutation of Gabriel, for all my sins whereby I have deserved wrath, and most grievously afflicted thy Son, and have so often dishonoured and offended thee also, and the whole host of heaven so that I may offer it a holy and pure sacrifice of prayer to atone for all the sins I have committed. Since my own life is so fleeting and uncertain, I would that all the blessed souls in heaven might repeat this salutation to thee, O Blessed Virgin, wherewith the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost ordained to salute thee by the mouth of their ambassador. Thus I may discover in some respect an incense worthy of thee as an odour of sweetness, I who find in myself nothing good or worthy to repay thee.

But even now, prostrate in thy presence, drawn by sincere devotion, and all-inflamed with the veneration of thy gracious name, I present to thee the joy thou didst feel at this salutation, when the Archangel Gabriel, being sent by God, entered thy chamber and reverently, on bended knees, honoured thy virginal countenance with a salutation new and unheard-of since the beginning of the world, saying, “Hail, Mary, full of grace! the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women!”

Which salutation I also, after the manner of the faithful, wish to offer thee anew, and were it in my power, I would offer it with a golden mouth and I desire from the bottom of my heart, that all creatures may say along with me,

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Amen.

This is the Angelic Salutation, formed by the institution of the Holy Ghost, and suited to thy supreme dignity and sanctity. This prayer consists of few words, but is deep in mysteries; short in speech but broad in virtue; sweeter than honey and more precious than gold – to be ruminated continually in the mouth of the heart – to be read and repeated most frequently with pure lips. For though it be woven with very few words, it spreads wide out into a broad torrent of heavenly sweetness. But woe to the slothful, woe to those undevout, and those who wander in this prayer, who weigh not these words, and taste not the sweetness they contain; who so often say, Hail Mary, without attention and reverence.

O most sweet Virgin Mary, guard me against such grievous neglect and sloth, and grant me pardon of the faults I have already committed. I will be in future more devout, fervent, and attentive in saying Hail Mary, whether in choir, or by myself, in the garden or in the field, or in whatever place I happen to be. And now, after this, what shall I ask of thee, my dearest Lady? What can be better, or more useful, or more necessary for me, an unworthy sinner, than that I may find grace and favour with thee and thy most-beloved Son. I therefore implore the grace of God, through thy power and intercession, who, as the angel declared, hast found the fulness of grace before God.

No petition is dearer to me, and there is nothing I am more in need of than the grace and mercy of God. The “grace of God is sufficient for me”, though I should possess nothing else. For what are all my efforts without it, yet what is impossible with its help and assistance?

I hope to be able, God willing, to post more from this book by Father Ryan.

Portions of the above post were posted in 2019, before the crash of our site (in March, 2020) and have been restored, edited and much new material added.

So there you have it! Pray the Rosary!

Remember – Our Lady needs us to obey:  First Saturdays of Reparation, daily rosary, at least 5 mysteries, wear her brown scapular and live your Total Consecration to her Immaculate Heart, offering daily duties in reparation and for the conversion of poor sinners.

  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
  St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.
  St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!

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