Ave Maria Meditations
The Immaculate Conception is the first step in our salvation. Through this singular and unique gift Mary received a profusion of Divine Grace, and through her cooperation she became worthy of absorbing infinitely more.
My most pure Mother, my soul so poor, all stained with wretchedness and sin cries out to your maternal heart. In your goodness deign, I beseech you, to pour out on me at least a little of the grace that flowed into you with such infinite profusion from the Heart of God. Strengthened and supported by this grace, may I succeed in better loving and serving Almighty God Who Filled your heart completely, and Who created the temple of your body from the moment of your Immaculate Conception.
The Three Divine Persons imbue this sublime creature with all her privileges, her favors and her graces, and with all of her holiness.
The Eternal Father created her pure and immaculate and is well pleased in her for she is the worthy dwelling of His only Son. Through the generating of His Son in His bosom from all eternity, He forecasts the generation of His Son as Man in the pure womb of this mother, and He clothed her from her conception in the radiant snowy garment of grace and of most perfect sanctity; she participates in His perfection.
The Son Who chose her for His Mother poured His wisdom into her that from the very beginning, by infused knowledge, she knew her God. She loved and served Him in the most perfect manner as He never until then had been loved and served on this earth.
The Holy Ghost poured His love into her; she was the only creature worthy or capable of receiving this love in unlimited measure because no other had sufficient purity to come so near to God; and being near to Him could know and love Him ever more. She was the only creature capable of containing the stream of love which poured into her from on high. She alone was worthy to return to Him from Whom came that love. This very love prepared her for that “Fiat” which delivered the world from the tyranny of the infernal enemy and overshadowed her, the purest of doves making her pregnant with the Son of God.
Oh my Mother, how ashamed I feel in your presence, weighted down as I am with faults! You are most pure and immaculate from the moment of your conception, indeed from the moment in eternity when you were conceived in the mind of God.
Have pity on me! May one compassionate look of yours revive me, purify me and lift me up to God; raising me from the filth of this world that I may go to Him Who created me, Who regenerated me in Holy Baptism, giving me back my white stole of innocence that original sin had so defiled. Dear Mother, make me love Him! Pour into my heart that love that burned in yours for Him. Even though I be clothed in misery, I revere the mystery of your Immaculate Conception, and I ardently wish that through it you may purify my heart so that I may love your God and my God. Cleanse my mind that it may reach up to Him and contemplate Him and adore Him in spirit and in truth. Purify my body that I too may be a tabernacle for Him and be less unworthy of possessing Him when He deigns to come to me in Holy Communion. Amen.
We too, redeemed by Holy Baptism, are corresponding to the grace of our vocation when in imitation of our Immaculate Mother we apply ourselves incessantly to the knowledge of God in order that we may ever learn better to know Him, to serve Him and to love Him.
St. Padre Pio