From Ave Maria Meditations
Our Lady is Queen of the Seraphic (Franciscan) Order
Feast?Day is December 15th??
Saint Francis’ Greetings to the Blessed Virgin:
Hail, Lady and Queen,? holy Mary, Mother of God,
Virgin who became the Church,
chosen by the Father in heaven,
consecrated by His beloved Son
and His Spirit, the Comforter:
in you was and remains,
the whole fullness of grace
and everything that is good.
Hail, His palace,
Hail, His tabernacle,
Hail, His dwelling,
Hail, His robe,
Hail, His handmaid,
Hail, His mother!
O holy Mother,
sweet and fair to see,
for us beseech the King,
your dearest Son,
our Lord Jesus Christ,
to death for us delivered:
that in His pitying clemency,
and by virtue of His most holy incarnation
and bitter death,
He may pardon our sins.
Holy Virgin Mary,
among all the women of the world,
there is none like you.
You are the daughter and handmaid of the most high King,
Father of heaven.
You are the Mother of our most holy Lord Jesus Christ.
You are the bride of the Holy Spirit.
Pray for us, with St. Michael the archangel,
and all the powers of heaven
and all the saints,
to your most holy and beloved Son,
our Lord and Master, Amen.
Saint Anthony’s Prayer to Our Lady
We ask you, Our Lady, you who are called the Morning Star,
dispel with your light the thick fog
of allurements to evil which fill our souls.
Like the light of the moon, replenish our emptiness,
and dissipate the darkness of our sins,
so that we may attain the fullness of eternal life
and the light of never diminishing glory.?
?With His help, who made you our light,
and although born from you, gave you life.
To Him be honor and glory from age to age.
A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun. (Rev. 12:1)
Mary appearing with the lights of the universe is a great sign indeed. How noble did Mary appear in the heaven of the Divine Plan! No more brilliant or splendid figure can be created by the mind of mortal man. Mary was not merely predestined for grace and glory with the holy angels and the elect of God and chosen for the greatest measure of grace and glory after Christ. She was also selected to fill the role of Mother of God, for she indeed is the Godbearer, the truly natural Mother of the Only-Begotten Son of God. She was the predestined Mother of Christ, having been predestined before all creatures,together with Christ, the firstborn of every creature. For Christ had been predestined to be the Son of Mary, just as Mary had been predestined to be the Mother of Christ.
The light of the sun reflects the dignity of motherhood, which God had ordained for her. With a radiance surpassing that of the moon, her position above the moon signifies the excellence of her grace. The crown of stars bespeaks the dignity of her special glory. For to these three things had Mary been predestined: motherhood, grace, and glory. What a truly noble act of predestination, a selection so unique and ineffable that words cannot express it aptly!
Mary was seen clothed with the sun that we may know that she is like the sun which, although one, illumines and warms each man as if it had been created by God for him alone. So the Virgin Mother of God is both the mother of all men and the mother of each individual man. To all she is a common mother; to each his own personal mother. As the one sun can be seen in its entirety by each and every man (for every man at the same time sees a complete outline of the sun), so every one of the faithful, who from his heart devotes himself entirely to the Virgin, may enjoy her complete love as if he were her only son. For this reason Christ spoke to Mary in the singular when He said: Woman, behold thy son.
Mary as the Mother of Christ participates in His glory, hence she is clothed with the sun. Mary also possessed Christ most perfectly as her only and beloved Son. How was it possible for the Virgin not to shine with sunlike splendor when she carried Christ, the Sun of infinite light, in her virginal womb? If God enclosed the sun in an immense crystal vase, would not that vase seem to be clothed with the very sun? In this way the sun clothes and adorns with its brilliant rays the pure substance of heaven, which it surrounds and engulfs. Just as the sun, glowing within the crystal on every side with its light, so the heavenly Virgin is clothed with Christ, the Sun of justice and glory. This divine vision signifies that, as bride and mother, the most holy Virgin shares in the glory of Christ and God to a high degree, so that no greater sharing or participation can be thought of.
St. Lawrence of Brindisi
An Act of Consecration:
Padre Pio prayed this Act of Consecration on the first Saturday of every month.
O Mary, Virgin most powerful and Mother of mercy, Queen of heaven and Refuge of sinners, we consecrate ourselves to your Immaculate Heart. We consecrate to you our very being and our whole life; all that we have, all that we love, all that we are. To you we give our bodies, our hearts and our souls; to you we give our homes, our families, our country. We desire that all that is in us and around us may belong to you, and may share in the benefits of your motherly benediction.
And that this act of consecration may be truly efficacious and lasting, we renew this day at your feet the promises of our Baptism and our first Holy Communion. We pledge ourselves to profess courageously and at all times the truths, of our Holy Faith,and to live as Catholics who are duly submissive to all the directions of the Pope and the Bishops in communion with him. We pledge ourselves to keep the commandments of God and His Church, in particular to keep holy the Lord’s day. We likewise pledge ourselves to make the consoling practices of the Christian religion, and above all, Holy Communion, an integral part of our lives, in so far as we shall be able to do so.
Finally, we promise you, O glorious Mother of God and loving Mother of all, to devote ourselves whole-heartedly to your service, in order to hasten and assure, through the sovereignty of your Immaculate Heart, the coming of the kingdom of the Sacred Heart of your adorable Son, in our own hearts and in the hearts of all, in our country and in all the world, as in heaven, so on earth. Amen.
In a letter St. Pio gave vent to a delicate filial gentleness, writing: “Here we are at last in the month of our beautiful Mother once again…. This dear Mother continues to lavish her maternal care upon me, especially during the present month. She takes care of me to an exceeding degree…. I am all aflame although there is no fire. I feel myself held fast and bound to the Son by means of this Mother…. I’d like to fly off to invite all creatures to love Jesus and Mary.”