Faith/Spirituality Forum: Mary
Mary QUESTION from Jean Greene on June 16, 2002 Hello- Thank you for your ministry and loyalty to the Magisterium. God Bless you!
I have recently returned to the Church - was a convert and lasped partly because of very poor RCIA instruction (apart from my own willful disobedience!).
My question is about Mary. I love Jesus with all my heart. I love the Sacraments and participate frequently in confession. I love and respect the Church.
I just can't seem to devote myself to Mary. I feel love for her and for the Holy Family. I feel like I have desire to grow close to her, to be devoted. I keep a rosary with me almost at all times. I have a brown scapular that I haven't been able to put on. I have a picture of her Immaculate Heart along with the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I talk to her on occasion and ask her to pray for me - to give me more love for her.
But I can't seem to devote time to the rosary, I haven't put on the scapular. I'm not sure why. I guess I don't want to blur the lines of devotion vs. worship.
Can you help?
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on July 6, 2002 Dear Mrs. Greene:
It sounds to me like you have a devotion to Mary -- you love her, talk to her, ask for her intercession. I don't think you are having problems with blurring the lines between devotion and worship.
Perhaps you need to understand a little about what it means to wear the Scapular and to say the Rosary.
The Scapular is a sign... it is a sign of your faith and in your love of the Blessed Mother to look out for you as any mother would. It is a symbol of devotion and honr to the Mother of God whom always points us toward her son -- Jesus.
As for the rosary... this is a devotional prayer that is designed to help us meditate upon the life of Jesus and Mary. When you pray the rosary you think about the mysteries of the faith -- the birth, life, death, and resuurection of our Lord and the glorious assumption of our Lady and her crowning in heaven.
The Rosary is not a requirement. In fact it is not my favorite prayer. I prefer the Divine Office (which is a liturgical prayer). But the rosary is a beautiful prayer and a powerful one -- perhaps the most powerful devotion prayer we have.
Do not fear. These sacramentals are to aid you in your faith. But they are not required. If these sacramentals are not aiding your faith, then choose another devotion that will. The point is that we need to be devotional Catholics and the Church provides us with a myriad of saints to choose from.
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