Ave Maria Meditations
Then they returned to Jerusalem…all these with one accord devoted themselves to prayer, together with the women and Mary, the Mother of Jesus… (Acts 1:12,14)
Christian life is the reproduction of Jesus in souls… Now, how will this mystical reproduction be brought about in souls? In the same way in which Jesus was brought into the world…In His miraculous birth, Jesus was the fruit of Heaven and earth. The Holy Spirit conveyed the divine fruitfulness of the Father to Mary, and this virginal soil brought forth in an ineffable manner our most loving Savior, the divine Seed, as the prophets called Him.
This is what we are taught regarding Jesus, with the conciseness and the precision of an article of Faith: “He was conceived by the Holy Spirit … of the Virgin Mary.” That is the way Jesus is always conceived. That is the way He is reproduced in souls. He is always the fruit of Heaven and earth. Two artisans—the Holy Spirit and the most holy Virgin Mary—must concur in the work that is at once God’s masterpiece and humanity’s supreme product. Both the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary are necessary to souls, for they are the only ones who can reproduce Christ.
Undoubtedly, the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary sanctify us in different ways. The first is the Sanctifier by essence, because He is God, who is infinite sanctity, and because He is the personal Love that completes, so to speak, the sanctity of God, consummating His life and His unity and it belongs to Him to communicate to souls the mystery of that sanctity.
The Virgin Mary, for her part, is the cooperator, the indispensable instrument in and by God’s design. From Mary’s maternal relation to the human body of Christ is derived her relation to His Mystical Body, which is being formed through all the centuries until the end of time, when it will be lifted up to the heavens, beautiful, splendid, complete, and glorious.
These two then, the Holy Spirit and Mary, are the indispensable sanctifiers of souls… For the Holy Spirit pours charity into our heart, makes a habitation of our soul, and directs our spiritual life by means of His gifts. The Virgin Mary has the efficacious influence of Mediatrix in the most profound and delicate operations of grace in our souls.
And, finally, the action of the Holy Spirit and the cooperation of the most holy Virgin Mary are constant; without them, not one single character of Jesus would be traced on our souls, no grace would increase, no bond of union with God would be strengthened in the rich flowering of the spiritual life. Such is the place that the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary have in the order of sanctification. Therefore, Christian piety should put these two artisans of Christ in their true place, making devotion to them something necessary, profound, and constant.
The Servant of God, Archbishop Luis Martinez (From “True Devotion to the Holy Spirit”)