The Secret of Mary by St. Louis de Montfort (b. 1673- d. 1716) is a short book which is filled with the spiritual treasures that de Montfort preached in his parish missions during his short, but fruitful, life. If you are busy, and do not have the time to read this book, there is a free audio version on YouTube (link below). It often has to be read (or listened to) in bits and pieces as each line is packed with insight, and meaning; most likely gleamed by the saint in the long periods of prayer that he was known to take.
Many people do not know the Blessed Virgin Mary, because she in not taught. If a person does not take up the study of her for himself, more than likely, he will not know her. Fr. Faber stated a similar sentiment in 1862:
“Here, in England, Mary is not half enough preached. Devotion to her is low and thin and poor. It is frightened out of its wits by the sneers of heresy. It is always invoking human respect and carnal prudence, wishing to make Mary so little of a Mary that Protestants may feel at ease about her. Its ignorance of theology makes it unsubstantial and unworthy. It is not the prominent characteristic of our religion which it ought to be. It has no faith in itself. Hence it is that Jesus is not loved, that heretics are not converted, that the Church is not exalted; that souls, which might be saints, wither and dwindle; that the Sacraments are not rightly frequented, or souls enthusiastically evangelised.
Jesus is obscured because Mary is kept in the background. Thousands of souls perish because Mary is withheld from them. It is the miserable unworthy shadow which we call our devotion to the Blessed Virgin that is the cause of all these wants and blights, these evils and omissions and declines. Yet, if we are to believe the revelations of the Saints, God is pressing for a greater, a wider, a stronger, quite another devotion to His Blessed Mother. I cannot think of a higher work or a broader vocation for anyone than the simple spreading of this peculiar devotion of the Venerable Grignon de Montfort. Let a man but try it for himself, and his surprise at the graces it brings with it, and the transformations it causes in his soul, will soon convince him of its otherwise almost incredible efficacy as a means for the salvation of men, and for the coming of the kingdom of Christ.
Oh, if Mary were but known, there would be no coldness to Jesus then! Oh, if Mary were but known, how much more wonderful would be our faith, and how different would our Communions be!
Oh, if Mary were but known, how much happier, how much holier, how much less worldly should we be, and how much more should we be living images of our sole Lord and Saviour, her dearest and most blessed Son!”
F. W. Faber, Priest of the Oratory
Presentation of our Blessed Lady, 1862
The lamentable situation summarized in 1862 by Fr. Faber continues today: Our Lady is not preached, or, if she is preached, the theology is incorrect; and she is often made to look like other women, which she is not.
She is singular.
She is the Immaculate Conception.
Anyway, it is easy to educate oneself today with the internet.
The following is an excerpt from The Secret of Mary:
“20. Happy, indeed sublimely happy, is the person to whom the Holy Spirit reveals the secret of Mary, thus imparting to him true knowledge of her. Happy the person to whom the Holy Spirit opens this enclosed garden for him to enter, and to whom the Holy Spirit gives access to this sealed fountain where he can draw water and drink deep draughts of the living waters of grace. That person will find only grace and no creature in the most lovable Virgin Mary. But he will find that the infinitely holy and exalted God is at the same time infinitely solicitous for him and understands his weaknesses. Since God is everywhere, he can be found everywhere, even in hell. But there is no place where God can be more present to his creature and more sympathetic to human weakness than in Mary. It was indeed for this very purpose that he came down from heaven. Everywhere else he is the Bread of the strong and the Bread of angels, but living in Mary he is the Bread of children.” -St. Louis de Montfort, from The Secret of Mary
Have a beautiful day.
•posted by SCF
The Secret of Mary may also be read online for free: here.
Image: The Annunciation by Leonardo da Vinci, information