The Role of Mother Mary in Our life of Holiness
While you are striving to put on Christ, assimilating yourself into Him; transforming yourself into Him, participating in His life; and meditating to acquire His virtues and graces, you cannot effectively do so without the help of Mary, His Mother. It is God’s will that to reach the Son we must go by way of the Mother.
Why should we go to Mary to reach Jesus? It is simple! Mother Mary wants to share her Memories of Her Son with us. She spent her life pondering over the things she saw and heard about Her Son. As Fr. Emile eloquently puts it, “Any meditation you make on Him will be but the repetition of one that she made centuries ago. Come close to her and she will make you understand and feel what she understood and felt when she explored the deep mysteries of Jesus.” (Fr. Emile Neubert, SM, 38)
So, before you pick up the Rosary to pray, always begin by putting yourself in Mary’s presence, then, ask her to share her memories of Jesus with you. She will teach you the perfect way to study and apply His holy virtues in your life. She will teach that to overcome sin it is necessary to practice the virtue that is directly opposed to your predominant tendency. Are you proud? Consider Jesus of her humility. Are you irritable? Contemplate Jesus’ sweetness. Are you selfish? Admire His forgetfulness of self and His readiness to sacrifice Himself for sinners. Are you sensual minded? Meditate on His passion. (Fr. Emile Neubert, SM, .45)
The Rosary is the prayer she has given us to study Jesus’ disposition which we lack. It is the best tool and means to see what Jesus thought, felt, said, and did. Praying the Rosary with Mary as Our Mother, intercessor, teacher, and perfect model of prayer, it will set our hearts on Jesus’s position, our Model of perfection; fill our life with joy and peace.
In a nutshell, the Rosary is basically seeing, and knowing Christ through Mary’s Perspective. After all, she was there with Him from the moment of the Incarnation to His Ascension into Heaven, and she now enjoys eternal life with Him! That’s why the Rosary is such a powerful prayer to cultivate our interior life.
Quoting the untimely words of St. John Paul II the Great: In Mary, we have a teacher who is the most perfect example of Christian contemplation. Mary kept all the memories of her Son’s life in her heart. St. Luke refers to Mary in his Gospel as a contemplative: But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart (LK 2:19) ( Robert Feeney, 54).
In his apostolic letter The Rosary of the Virgin Mary, John Paul II states:
“With the Rosary, the Christian people sits at the school of Mary and is
led to contemplate the beauty on the face of Christ and to experience the depths of his love. Through the Rosary the faithful receive abundant grace, as though from the very hands of the Mother of the Redeemer” (RVM N.1).
At Fatima our Lady signaled her Rosary as an effective means to bring modern men back to Christ, for she has always known that the basic reason for the waywardness of the world is its forgetfulness of Christ. Men no longer make Christ the beginning, the center, the end of their lives; they no longer have their minds and hearts set upon Christ as the model; men no longer strive to imitate the way of Christ set forth so clearly in the Gospels. To bring men to a realization of Christ, to help them in a conscious imitation of Christ, our Lady offers the world her Rosary. For the rosary is the epitome of Christ’s life; it is the daily reawakening within us of the message of Christ. By meditating upon the mysteries of the Rosary men begin to be Christ-centered; they absorb more and more the spirit of Christ; they reproduce the life of Christ in their own daily actions. Thus, ‘the divine plan of reconciliation, sanctification, and glorification of souls reduces itself to Christianizing them or conforming them to Christ.