Tuesday, May 14, 2002

May, the month of Mary

I have a prayerbook from The Catholic Press, Inc. copyrighted 1954. It is entitled simply The Prayer Book. I love this prayer book, the prayers are so powerful, authoritative. Back then, it doesn't seem that people were conscious of the non-Catholic criticism about the evils of "structured prayer". Or, if they knew about it, they didn't really give two hoots. These prayers have "structured!" stamped all over them, and that is why I love them. Not because I cannot burst out into spontaneous prayer, but I feel more connected with the Catholic Church when I pray her prayers. Prayers said by countless generations of Catholics. The only other time I feel such a connection is at the Eucharist. Anyways, there is a section of this book that lists various prayers for not only morning and evening, but prayers for the days of the week and then for the month. As you can tell by the title of this blog entry, May is the month of Mary. Here is what the book has to say about it.

Toward the end of the eighteenth century a zealous Jesuit priest, Father Lalomia, started among the students of the Roman college of his Society the practice of dedicating May to Our Lady. The devotion, which others had promoted in a small way, soon spread to other Jesuit Colleges and to the entire Latin church and since that time it has been a regular feature of Catholic life.

After this little blurb (did they call stuff like this "blurbs" back in the 1950's?), the book lists a number of Marian prayers along with the corresponding indulgences. So, every few days, I'll post a prayer or two and the indulgence. Perhaps people would like to pray along.

For the Grace of Love
O Mary, my dear Mother, how I love thee! And yet in reality how little! Thou dost teach me what I ought to know, for thou teachest me what Jesus is to me and what I ought to be for Jesus. Dearly beloved Mother, how close to God thou art, and how utterly filled with Him! In the measure that we know God, we remind ourselves of thee. Mother of God, obtain for me the grace of loving my Jesus; obtain for me the grace of loving thee!

-Cardinal Merry Del Val
Indulgence of 500 days; plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, for the devout repetition of this prayer every day for a month. (352)

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