Mary's Little Office

Friday, September 30, 2016

What You Believe Matters

I remember Father Roger Linnan saying "If you know something is right and don't want to do it - do it anyway! Those words still ring in my head at this posting.


The comparison of Bishop Robert Barron to the Lone Ranger was inevitable.  The Lone Ranger and his faithful Indian companion Tonto chased after the 'bad guys' and made the West a better place to live.  


Thursday, September 29, 2016

Final Perseverance



― 1889 ―

       Let us confide our salvation after Jesus to Mary. If she wills to save us, by her intercession with her Son, we shall be saved, and it depends on ourselves whether she wills it or not. If we sincerely desire it ourselves, if we ask it each day of our tender Mother, we may hold ourselves assured of that great gift of final perseverance. 

And when Mary shall have placed us by her side, we shall say to that great Queen: It is thou, sweet and powerful Sovereign, who by thy influence with thy Son hast saved us. Mayest thou be blest, loved, and glorified for ever!


Page 10, 11

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Jesus and Mary


― 1889 ―

       Mary was united in the mind of God with the Person of her Divine Son, and from all eternity God thinking of the Son thought also of the Mother. God decreeing the existence and glorification of the Son, decreed equally the existence and glorification of the Mother. Now that which is so closely united in the Divine decrees ought never to be separated; I mean to say that in our homage and our love we ought to unite JESUS and MARY; when we worship JESUS CHRIST to cast a glance of tenderness to Mary; and never to pretend to honor MARY; if our worship does not carry us on the JESUS.



Monday, September 26, 2016

Mother of Fair Love

O Mother of fair love!  show me thy glory and fill me with admiration to thee - the most beautiful work of thy and my Creator. Replenish me with love to thee who didst give me Jesus - the fruit of the love of God, who still givest me Jesus, and teach me to know Him, to love Him, thus to gain His mercy. Look with pleasure upon the small tokens of my love and obtain by thy intercession for me a holy spirit that I may always honor thee and pray to thee in spirit and in truth.  Amen.

The Month of Mary
19th century

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Children of Mary


― 1889 ―

       The world has been created for Jesus and for Mary through Jesus; consequently the whole world belongs to JESUS and MARY. We are the brethren of JESUS, and through Him the children of MARY.
     We cannot divest ourselves of this relationship, it is our birthright; let us give Them another right; let us be Theirs by choice and love, choosing freely JESUS CHRIST for our Sovereign Master and MARY for our loving Mother.



Saturday, September 24, 2016

Our Destiny


― 1889 ―

From all eternity Mary was destined to become Mother of God; and if she had not been Mother of God the end of her existence would have completely failed. But she responded worthily to the free choice of the Lord and merited by her correspondence with the grace of her predestination that eminent dignity that God had prepared for her. 

Each one of us is destined by God to a work, to a vocation, to a ministry which in the order of Providence ought to glorify our Creator and save our soul. May MARY obtain for us to be faithful like herself to the voice of God, and to fulfill worthily the end of our existence!



Friday, September 23, 2016

Before Time Was

Image result for Virgin Mary creation


― 1889 ―

       Let us go back in thought before time was. Nothing exists but God; outside His eternal Being all is silent; it is the silence of nothingness. God has not yet moved from His unalterable repose. He has not yet launched the stars into space. He has not established the earth on its foundations. He has not yet pronounced that all powerful fiat which will bring order out of chaos, dispel the darkness, divide the waters, cover the land with herbs and plants, and fix in the firmament those shining lights which are to preside over day and night. He has not produced any living soul, neither the fishes that swim in the sea, nor the birds that fly in the air, nor the reptiles and animals that dwell on the land; nor that being who is to command the fishes in the sea, the birds of heaven, the reptiles and the animals on the land, man―the king of creation; man who is to bear on his brow and yet more in his soul the image and likeness of his Creator.

     Nothing exists but God, for God has not yet created the world. But the decree of creation is eternal like its Creator, and creation in its fulness already exists in the mind of God. And foremost in this eternal thought Christ, inseparable from His Mother, presents Himself: Christ, the First-born of every creature; Mary Mother of Christ, the first-born of women. For the Church puts into her mouth those beautiful words of the Proverbs, ch. viii.: The Lord possessed me in the beginning of His ways. . . . The depths were not as yet and I was already conceived. . . . Before the hills I was brought forth. 




Thursday, September 22, 2016

As The Morning Rising


― 1889 ―

       "What shall I say and how shall I speak of that glorious and Blessed Virgin? God alone excepted, she is above every other being: more beautiful than the cherubim and seraphim, and all the angelic host, it is not enough to praise her with human lips or even with the voice of angels. O Blessed Virgin, pure dove, heavenly spouse! O Mary! heaven, temple and throne of the Divinity, thou possessest the sun which shines in heaven and upon earth―JESUS CHRIST. Luminous cloud, to enlighten the world, thou hast drawn down from heaven the brightest of the stars―JESUS CHRIST. Hail, full of grace, gate of heaven, whom the prophet of the Canticles in his inspired discourse, hath clearly pointed out, crying: Thou art a garden enclosed, my sister, my spouse, a garden enclosed, a fountain sealed up. The Virgin is the lily without spot, which has brought forth the unfading rose―JESUS CHRIST. O holy Mother of God, immaculate lamb, who hast given to the world the Word incarnate of thyself, the Lamb JESUS. O Virgin most holy, who dost cause wonder in the angelic hosts! A great sign appeareth in the heavens, a woman clothed with the sun, bearing the moon in her arms. Yes, a great wonder in heaven: the nuptial couch of the Virgin, bearing the Son of God. A great wonder in heaven: the Lord of angels has become the Child of a Virgin. The angels accused Eve, but now they glorify Mary, who hath raised up the fallen Eve, and opened heaven to Adam, chased out of Paradise. For MARY is the mediatress between heaven and earth, uniting these two extremes. The grace of the Blessed Virgin is immense. So Gabriel begins his salutation, saying: Hail, full of grace, resplendent heaven. Hail, full of grace, Virgin adorned with every virtue. Hail, full of grace, golden urn containing the celestial manna. Hail, full of grace, who dost satiate the thirsty with the sweetness of an inexhaustible fountain. Hail, fun of grace, golden urn containing the celestial manna. Hail, full of grace, who dost satiate the thirsty with the sweetness of an inexhaustible fountain. Hail, most holy Immaculate Mother, who has conceived Christ, existing before thee. Hail, royal purple, who hast clothed the King of heaven and earth. Hail unknown book, who has exposed and made known to the world, the Word, the Son of the Father."
St. Epiphanius, 
4th century

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Our Lady appears to Bernadette

By Henri Lasserre
Bernadette's Personal Biographer

She was of middle height.  She appeared to be quite young, and had the grace of the age of twenty years.  But, without losing aught of its tender delicacy, this lustre, so fleeting in time, had in her the stamp of eternity.  Further, in her features so divinely marked, there were mingled in some sort, but without disturbing their harmony, the successive and distinct beauties of the four seasons of human life.  The innocent candor of the Child, the absolute purity of the Virgin, the tender  seriousness of the highest of Maternities, and Wisdom superior to that of all accumulated ages, were summed up and melted into each other, without injuring the effect of each in this marvelous countenance of youthful womanhood.  To what can we compare it in this fallen world, where the rays of the beautiful are scattered, broken and tarnished, and where they never appear to us without some impure admixture?  Any image, any comparison would be a degradation of this unutterable type.  No majesty existing in the universe, no distinction of this world, no simplicity here below, could convey any idea of it or assist us to comprehend it better.  It is not with earthly lamps that we can render visible, and, so to say, light up the stars of heaven.

     Even the regularity and the ideal purity of these features, in which nothing clashed, shields them from any attempt at description. Need we however say, that the oval curve of the countenance was infinitely graceful; that the eyes were blue and so sweet that they seemed to melt the heart of everyone upon whom they turned their gaze? The lips breathed forth divine goodness and kindness. The brow seemed to contain supreme wisdom, that is to say, the union of omniscience with boundless virtue.

     Her garments of an unknown texture, and doubtless woven in the mysterious loom which furnishes attire for the lilies of the valley, were white as the stainless mountain snow, and more magnificent in their simplicity than the gorgeous robe of Solomon in all his glory. Her robe, long and training, falling in chaste folds around her, suffered her feet to appear reposing on the rock, and lightly pressing the branches of the wild rose which trailed there. On each of them in their virgin nudity there expanded the mystic rose of a bright, golden color.

     In front, a girdle―blue as the heavens―was knotted half-way round her body and fell in two long bands reaching within a short distance of her feet. Behind, a white veil fixed around her head and enveloping in its ample folds, her shoulders and the upper part of her arms, descended as far as the hem of her robe.

     She wore neither rings, nor necklace, nor diadem, nor jewels of any description; none of those ornaments with which human vanity has decorated itself in all ages. A chaplet, with beads as white as drops of milk strung on a chain of the golden harvest, hung from her hands, which were fervently clasped. The beads of the chaplet glided one after the other through her fingers. The lips however of this Queen of Virgins, remained motionless. Instead of reciting the rosary, she was perhaps listening in her own heart to the eternal echo of the Angelic Salutation, and to the vast murmur of invocations coming from the earth.

     She was silent; but later her own words, and the miraculous events which we shall to recount, plainly testified that She was the Immaculate Virgin, the most august and holy Mary, Mother of God.

     This marvelous apparition gazed on Bernadette, who, in the first shock of amazement, had, as we have already said, sunk down, and without assigning any reason to herself, and suddenly prostrated herself on her knees.

Excepted from Our Lady of Lourdes.
Written by Henri Lasserre (Bernadette's personal biographer).


Tuesday, September 20, 2016

The Story & The Prayer

The Story:

Of St. Bernard it may be said, that at baptism already love and devotion of the ever-blessed Virgin Mary was infused into his heart. With astonishment it was noticed, that joy caused him in his tenderest childhood to tremble when he beheld a picture of Mary, or heard her sweet name mentioned. As a young man St. Bernard found himself exposed to many dangers; therefore he entered a monastery. Here he manifested his love to the blessed Mother of God, which no pen is able to describe. He was the herald of the Queen of heaven, the most zealous announcer of her unfathomable beauty and sanctity, the inspired preacher of her incomprehensible prerogatives and excellent virtues, the most childlike venerator of Mary. His words seized powerfully the hearts of his co-temporaries and drew them gently to the love and veneration of Mary. In his whole life, devoted to the glory of God and the salvation of men, he never failed until his death in the year 1153 to propagate everywhere the veneration of Mary.

The Prayer:

Remember, O most merciful Virgin Mary, that it is unheard of, that any one flying to thee for protection, imploring thy help, or seeking thy intercession, was ever forsaken. Animated by this unerring confidence, I hasten to thee, Virgin of virgins; I fly to thee, O sweet Mother, a wretched sinner, I prostrate myself sighing at thy feet; despise not my prayer, O Mother of the Divine Word, but graciously hear and grant the same. Amen.

I opened the window to the gentle rain and said my prayers there.

Monday, September 19, 2016


Lady-Day is Every-Day for the Children of Mary

Click on Sound bar to pray with us or pray in solitude by opening the window at the bottom of this page.

The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary:
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit. 
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee;  blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.
Behold the handmaid of the Lord: 
Be it done unto me according to Thy word.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee;  blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.
And the Word was made Flesh: 
And dwelt among us.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is 
        with thee;  blessed art thou among 
        women and blessed is the fruit of thy
        womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of 
        God, pray for us sinners, now and at 
        the hour of our death.  Amen.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, 
that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us pray: 

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

I opened the window to the gentle rain
and said my prayers there.


Sunday, September 18, 2016

Sunday Morning Storyland


     A nervous lady was riding in an electric trolley car. As the car was speeding along it came to a downgrade. She asked the conductor, "Will we be able to stop?" 
     "O yes," he replied. "We have an electric brake." But the lady was not satisfied. "Suppose that fails. Can you stop the car?"
     "Oh yes, " he replied. We have an emergency brake."
     She was still not satisfied. "And if that should fail, can you stop the car?"
     "Oh yes, We have a hand brake."
     The nervous lady was still not satisfied. "But suppose the handbrake should fail. What will happen to us then?"
     "If the handbrake should fail," said the conductor, "some of us will go to heaven and some of us will go to hell." 

     Today the Church wishes us to ask ourselves this question: Are we ready for the judgment? The coming of the Son of Man is like lightning out of the East. We should always be ready. People who say, "I have no time to take care of my soul; I have too many other things to do," will have all eternity to regret that they did not take the time.

It is better for us to be like the blacksmith of a little village who was asked, "Arent't you embarrassed to be seen in Church? A big strong man like you? What will people say if they see the blacksmith in Church?" To which he answered, 
     "What will people say if they see the blacksmith in hell?" 

     The judgment will go something like this: God asks Himself about each soul that comes before Him, "Do I see the image of Myself in you?" If the soul is in the state of grace then it shines forth in the image of God Who made it. If the soul is not in the state of grace, then God cannot see Himself and He says to the soul, "I do not know you."

     According to an old Chinese legend, a soul crept up to heaven, and knocked timidly at the gate. 
     When asked who was there, the soul replied, "It is I, Lord."
     "If you say, 'It is I,' " said a voice, "you are not ready yet for heaven" 
     Back to earth the poor soul went and lived a life of prayer and penance.
     During that time, the soul learned the lesson that at judgment God is going to ask, "Do I see the image of Myself in you?"
     Back to the gate of heaven crept the soul and when the voice asked, "Who is there?" he replied, "it is Thyself, Lord."
     The voice told him to enter: "Good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of the Lord.

     "It is appointed for men once to die and after that the judgment." Our whole lives lead up to this. Are we ready for the judgment? Is there anything in our souls which would make God say "I do not know you?" If there is something that stands between you and God, make up your minds to remove it this week by a good confession. Then you need not be worried like the nervous lady in the trolley car. You will be ready like the soul that crept to heaven's gate carrying within himself the likeness of God. God will look at you and ask, "Do I see the image of Myself in you?" If He does He will say to you, "Good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of the Lord."

Sunday Morning Storyland
Sermons for the Children's Mass
Bruce Publishing, 1946


Saturday, September 17, 2016

With Our Lady at Littlemore Farm

Our Lady of Littlemore

Hidden behind the entry door of Sheehan's Religious Goods in Boston, Our Lady's sad countenance and peeling paint first caught my eye. The salesman told me that she had stood in a nearby convent yard for the last 80 years and was indeed looking for a new home.  It was at that moment Our Lady became destined for Littlemore Farm.  It didn't take long and she was in the back seat of our Jeep Wagon beginning her trek to northwest Iowa.  With a thousand brick and summers labor a shrine was built and that was where she remained.  

Years later when we drove away from Littlemore Farm for the last time, Our Lady's Shrine stood empty. Today she stands on a chiseled limestone ledge inside the front door of our home in Scottsdale, Arizona greeting all who enter.

She remains Our Lady of Littlemore. 

With a Thousand Brick 

Life at Littlemore


Friday, September 16, 2016

Mother of Sorrows

Our Lady of Sorrows
Hand Painted French Holy Card, 18th century
Lourdes Museum,  2016
Prayer to Our Lady of Sorrows

O Most holy and afflicted Virgin! Queen of martyrs! thou who didst stand beneath the Cross, witnessing the agony of thy expiring Son―through the unceasing sufferings of thy life of sorrow, and the bliss which now more than amply repays thee for thy past trials, look down with a mother's tenderness and pity on me, who kneel before thee to venerate thy Dolors, and place my requests with filial confidence, in the sanctuary of thy wounded heart; present them, I beseech thee, on my behalf to Jesus Christ, through the merits of His own most sacred Passion and Death, together with thy sufferings at the foot of the Cross, and through the united efficacy of both, obtain the grant of my present petition. To whom shall I recur my wants and miseries if not to thee, O Mother of mercy, who, having so deeply drunk of the chalice of thy Son, canst compassionate the woes of those who still sigh in the land of exile.  Amen.

Borrowed from - Mary's Seven Sorrows
Publisher - Benedictine Convent of Perpetual Adoration
Clyde, Missouri, 1955

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Show Thyself a Mother

Children of Mary
19th century French Holy Card

I put my trust forever,
O Mary, pure, in thee.
Then show thyself a mother,
And daily succour me.
And when death's hand shall touch me,
Thy pity I implore;
Oh, lead me, dearest Mother,
To God―for evermore!

Payers of an Irish Mother
Brian O'Higgins, Dublin, 1934

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross

St. Aloysius of Gonzaga
Catholic Art Studio, Chicago (19th century)


We Catholics have a great share in this Exaltation of the Cross. It is our special trust, our badge, our glory. Like the first Christians, it is ours to honor, to use, to be known by. Those who have fallen from the true faith have laid it aside as childish and not fit for the mature. But the Gospel was preached to the childlike, and the kingdom of Heaven reserved for them. So we will keep our childlike ways, and loyally use the sacred sign. We will make it with reverence, with confidence, with joy. And the day will come when we who are signed with the Sign of the Cross upon our foreheads will go forth to meet our Redeemer, and He will acknowledge us to be His own. By that sign we shall conquer.  

The Manual of the Holy Catholic Church, 1906 
Duggan Publishing Company, Chicago


Our Life, Our Sweetness, Our Hope

Our Lady of Lourdes
Catholic Art Studio, Chicago (19th century)

She is our life, our sweetness, our hope, and we must suffer no sneers of those without, no profane babbling to move us, or in the least deter us from giving our hearts to Mary. We must fly to her protection as the child flies to its mother, and seek our safety and our consolation in her love, in her maternal embrace. 

Our help is thee sweet mother. Oh, protect us, thy children, and save us from the evil communications of this world, lost to virtue, and enslaved to the enemy of our souls!

Orestes A. Brownson (19th century)

Monday, September 12, 2016

The Holy Name of Mary

The Holy Name of Mary has special significance to half a million believers in Zeitoun, Egypt.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Her Eyes - A Study with Celine Dion

Ave Maria
Maiden mild!
Oh, listen to a maidens prayer.
For thou canst hear amid the wild
Tis thou, tis thou canst save amid despair
We slumber safely till the morrow
Though we've by man outcast reviled
Oh, maiden, see a maidens sorrow
Oh, mother, hear a suppliant child!
Ave Maria
Ave Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Ave, ave dominus
Dominus tecum
The murky caverns air so heavy
Shall breathe of balm if thou hast smiled
Oh, maiden, hear a maiden pleadin
Oh, mother, hear a suppliant child
Ave Maria
Ave Maria

Friday, September 9, 2016

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

From the Classroom

There is no better way for Christian friends to greet and part company than to say , "The Lord be with you." Your friend may rejoin "and with your spirit."  

Now you can learn this friendship greeting in the beautiful language of the Church by using the simple translation below.  The Latin phrase is in blue with the translation directly beneath.  Remember that some words in English are implied in Latin so there is not a word for word translation.

Dóminus,      vobíscum.    
The Lord       you with.     

Et        cum      spíritu   tuo.
And     with      spirit   your.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Daily Commendation

Catholic Schools, USA - 1959

A Commendation of Oneself to Our Lady

O Holy Mary, my sovereign Lady, into thy blessed trust and special custody and into the bosom of thy mercy do I this day and every day, and at the hour of my death, commit my soul and my body;  to thee I commit all my hope and happiness, all my anxieties and miseries, my life and the end of my life, that through thy most holy intercession and through thy merits all my actions may be guided and governed according to thine and thy Son's will.  Amen.

The Inner Court
Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd, London, 1924

Mary's Little Office
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