Sunday, September 12, 2021

The Most Holy Name of Mary

Whosoever thou art that knowest thyself to be here not so much walking upon firm ground, as battered to and fro by the gales and storms of this life’s ocean, if thou wouldst not be overwhelmed by the tempest, keep thine eyes fixed upon this star’s clear shining. If the winds of temptation rise against thee, or thou run upon the rocks of trouble, look to the star, call on Mary. If thou art tossed by the waves of pride, or ambition, or slander, or envy, look to the star, call on Mary. If anger or avarice or the enticements of the flesh beat against thy soul’s barque, look to Mary. If the enormity of thy sins trouble thee, if the foulness of thy conscience confound thee, if the dread of judgment appall thee, if thou begin to slip into the deep of despondency, into the pit of despair, think of Mary.

The Apparition of the Virgin Mary to St Bernard, 1486 by Fra Filippo Lippi (1457-1504); public domain image from Wikimedia Commons.
In dangers, in difficulties, in doubts, think of Mary, call upon Mary. Let Her not be away from thy mouth or from thine heart, and that thou may obtain the succour of Her prayers, turn not aside from the example of Her conversation. If thou follow Her, thou wilt never go astray; if thou pray to Her, thou wilt never despair; if thou keep Her in mind, thou wilt never wander. If She hold thee, thou wilt never fall; if She lead thee, thou wilt never be weary; if She help thee, thou wilt reach home safe, and so prove in thyself how rightly it was said, “And the Virgin’s name was Mary.” (From the sermon of St Bernard of Clairvaux in the Office of the Most Holy Name of Mary.)

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