HAIL MARY

Lent 37 ~ Light for the Dark

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          Above all, I beg of you to be always gay, joyful and happy, for this is the true mark of the Spirit of God, Who wishes that we should serve Him in peace and contentment; do not be uneasy or anxious, but do all things with liberty of mind and in the presence of God.   ~  St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

          Holy Week began on a difficult note but today, things deepened without warning and completely knocked me off the hill. I finally broke down at Jesus’ feet, my first time in some weeks.

          Still, I had a feeling I was under some kind of attack. I don’t usually see things in this light but I did today. Because today, having heard of vicious attacks against Ukrainian women and girls, I felt I had to do something. Knowing how packed and busy my day was going to be, I needed to be able to make some kind of a continuous offering, alongside the calls of work. Hence, I decided to offer up as many Hail Mary’s as I could, asking Mother Mary if each bud could in some way be used to save the life of a woman or a girl.

          A few rose~buds in, everything began to unravel. Even minor issues threw me off balance, on and on, snowballing till late afternoon. By late evening, as the humidity of an impending storm singed the sunset hours, I knew I had barely given anything towards so great a need. Hell was being unearthed in Ukraine and here I was, as usual, tripping over far smaller trials. Darkness had seemingly won.

          But someone saw, and someone knew I needed help against whatever was blowing hard against me today.

Above all, I beg of you to be always gay, joyful and happy, for this is the true mark of the Spirit of God, Who wishes that we should serve Him in peace and contentment;

          How do I be this gay, joyful and happy when dark winds rise? I wondered mutinously. How do I not lose the mark of the Holy Spirit? For once, I felt that beloved saint~friend did not have God’s word for me today.

          Just as frustration began to curl into me, I saw it,

…do not be uneasy or anxious,

but do all things with liberty of mind and in the presence of God. 

          On my own, I can do none of the above for I bear no kinship with the serene lotuses of still ponds. The quiet peace of saints continually evades me. But if there’s anything I’ve managed to learn, it is that I can always trust in God to grant me every grace to fill every dry gully of need. What I have need of, He will provide.

          So, back to God’s Heart I went again.

          This time, into Its depths I gave up my darkness. In exchange I took His Light.

Lent 34 ~ Blow the Spirit of My Mother

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When the virus reaches the lungs, their mucous membranes become inflamed. That can damage the alveoli or lung sacs and they have to work harder to carry out their function of supplying oxygen to the blood…   ~  The New York Times

And about I guess it was about 3 o’clock in the morning I got to the point where I couldn’t even breathe, and I tell you I felt like I had a man laying on my chest and the weight of this man was so heavy that he was taking my breath. I mean, it was like I couldn’t even breathe. And then all of a sudden I felt this — I felt air blown into my lungs and I know as a believer that God was there with me, and He began to blow air in my lungs and I took a deep breath…the doctor came in the next morning and informed him that he had hardly any fluid left in his lungs… ~  Clay Bentley, Covid-19 survivor

 

I felt air blown into my lungs

 

          5 years ago, on the 2nd day of my Passion of Christ novena, I felt a voice say,

Blow the spirit of My Mother into the realms.

I didn’t understand what ‘realms’ referred to; I didn’t know how to blow either.

          But yesterday, reading that account of Clay Bentley, seeing the words, I felt air blown into my lungs, I suddenly remembered the Voice that told me to blow the spirit of Mary into the realms.

          Like everyone else, I had learned that the Sars-CoV-2 virus which causes Covid-19 can severely damage the lungs, impairing its ability to supply oxygen to the blood.

Step into the breach

          What if there was something I could do to help stricken lungs to heal and function well again?

Step into the breach

Blow the spirit of My Mother into the realms

          And so I’ve begun. I’m praying Hail Marys, offering each one for a Covid victim in need of the Holy Mother’s spirit. I don’t know if it’s what I’m meant to do, but ailing lungs need help.

The Hail Mary prayer is that help. It is the heavenly ventilator needed by so many.

 

Hail Mary, full of grace,

The Lord is with you

Blessed are you among all women

And blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Greet Mary

1861 Elin Kleopatra Danielson-Gambogi (Finnish painter, 1861-1919) (2)

… for nine days, she personally greeted Mary by saying a thousand Hail Marys a day in Her honour   ~  The Life of Faustina Kowalska, The Authorised Autobiography, Sr. Sophia Michaelenko, CMGT

          The usual Rosary of just 50 Hail Marys is the Alps for me. I can’t even manage the tiny anthill just outside our residential area, much less the Alps – in any form.

          And yet, this line in the autobiography of one my favourite saints, puts out its hand and pauses my gallop across the day.

She personally greeted Mary

a 1000 Hail Marys

9 days

          I just cannot do 1000. I don’t know how St. Faustina did it but I do know what I can do and what is beyond me and 1000 a day ticks the second box. As I was trying to settle on a manageable figure, it came to me to just ask God what He wanted of me.

          Greet Mary, was His simple answer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lent 34 ~ Two Roses

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          This morning, I returned to an old garden, hidden from the busy walkways of life. There, I plucked two blooms and carried them back with me in my heart ~ my two children returned to Heaven through miscarriage.

          Later, a struggle with anger against oppressors attacking my kids, anger worsening with every mile to church. All through Mass. Wanting to protect my children. Planning. Then, not sure if anything I do will work. Twenty years of this, worse now because of the kids and the danger they face.

          I tried saying the Rosary during our drive to church but I couldn’t focus on a single Mystery then. So, I resorted to simple Hail Marys, little roses for my Mother. I couldn’t seem to offer anything else.

          I just wished She would say just one word to me.

          Just before Mass began, I was with my Diary – Divine Mercy in My Soul. Speak to me, please, I begged. The entries I read were to do with Confession. I read them carefully, searching for His voice. I couldn’t hear anything clearly. So, I moved on.

          Then, I remembered that we were planning for Confession. I went back to the Confession entries.

Concerning Holy Confession.

We should derive two kinds of profit from Holy Confession:
1. We come to confession to be healed;
2. We come to be educated-like a small child, our soul has constant need of education.   ~   #Entry 376

          I understood the words. But I still could not access the direction and comfort I was desperate for. Then, somehow, I lost my place in the book. Searching, I stumbled upon something else – O Blessed Host… Despite my inner turmoil, I was drawn to those words.

O Blessed Host, our only hope in the toil and monotony of everyday life.

O Blessed Host, our only hope amid the ruin of our hopes and endeavors.

O Blessed Host, our only hope in the midst of the ravages of the enemy and the efforts of hell.

The efforts of hell. Yes. That aptly described what I was facing, what the kids and my husband were facing.

          As the Host was raised, I cried out with heart and soul,

Save us, Jesus!

Save us, Jesus!

          Later, during Confession, listening intently to my pastor’s words, quiet and gentle, unhesitating in his counsel, my soul was educated, and directed towards hope.

And towards the seeking of angels.

          Just before his final prayer, this gentle priest who has known much suffering, told me to offer Heaven a gift. Two Hail Marys. Roses for my Mother. A softness stole into my heart.

          I knelt to pray. Heart and soul, I offered up the Hail Marys. I begged Mother Mary to keep my children safe.

          Then, I remembered my two wee babies returned to Heaven through miscarriage.

Two children

Two Hail Marys

          Two roses. One for each child, for our Mother. Gift of angels.