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  • Marian Reflections

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Marian thought for February

«It was not enough for God to give us his Son on a Cross, but he also gave Mary to us. When we honor the Virgin Mary, we will love Jesus more. When we place ourselves under her mantle we will better understand divine mercy. How great is God, how sweet is Mary!» (St. Rafael Arnáiz)

St. Rafael Arnaiz Baron was born on April 9, 1911 in Burgos, Spain. He studied in the Jesuit school, where he received his First Holy Communion in 1919. He showed a very great openness to the things that had to do with God from a very early age. The first signs of the illness that would mark the rest of his life appeared in 1922. His father, who believed that his recovery was due to the Virgin Mary’s special intervention, took Rafael to Zaragoza in thanksgiving and consecrated him to Our Lady of Pilar. As years went by, he developed many different traits, such as friendship. He also grew in his Christian life. God placed the desire in his heart to consecrate himself in monastic life. He met the Trappist monks of San Isidro de Dueñas and felt very attracted to that life, because he saw that it corresponded to his intimate desires. He entered there on January 15, 1934. He had to leave the convent three times due to the diabetes that God mysteriously used to test him. Each time he returned, he came back with more desires to be generous and faithful. These desires were fulfilled on April 26, 1938, when he left this world at only 27 years of age. He was declared Blessed by Pope John Paul II in 1992 and canonized on October 11, 2009.

Saint Louis Marie de Montfort

san luis

"God the Father gathered together of all the waters, and He named it the sea (mare). He has gathered together of all His graces, and He has called it Mary (Maria)."

Saint Louis Marie de Montfort was born in Montfort (France) on January 31st, 1673. He was the eldest of 18 siblings, 3 of which became priests and another 3 religious sisters. Since an early age he was greatly devoted to the Eucharist and to the Blessed Virgin Mary and would often be found spending long periods of time before an image of the Virgin Mary. Ever since he was little he used to go to daily mass even though that meant getting up early in the morning and walking 4 km to get to the Church. He was 20 years old when he felt the call from God to consecrate his life in the priesthood. He was ordained at the age of 27 on June 5th, 1700. His priestly motto was: "Be a slave to Mary". Among his writings we find one of the most well known works written about Our Lady: "True devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary". Saint Louis Marie is venerated as a priest, a missionary, and a founder, but above all as the slave of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He died in Saint Laurent sur Sevre on April 28th, 1716 when he was just 43 years old. He was beatified in 1888 and canonized on July 20th, 1947.

 
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