Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Fruits of the Pilgrimage

I thought everyone would be edified by the prayer our Holy Father composed to Our Lady of Lourdes in honor of the recent pilgrimage. I am still amazing and moved whenever I see him struggle against the rising burden of his cross of ailments. The early popes who suffered a swift martyrdom before the crowds, in the colosseum, in the courts, must be praying for this heroic warrior. He struggles with every step to hand on the Gospel truth, that suffering can be redemptive. Okay enough of my prattling; here's the text. Say it once today for someone you love. Say it again for some one in need. Say it a third time for some one struggling with a terminal illness.


Hail Mary, poor and humble Woman, Blessed by the Most High! Virgin of hope, dawn of a new era, We join in your song of praise, to celebrate the Lord’s mercy, to proclaim the coming of the Kingdom and the full liberation of humanity.

Hail Mary, lowly handmaid of the Lord, Glorious Mother of Christ! Faithful Virgin, holy dwelling-place of the Word, Teach us to persevere in listening to the Word, and to be docile to the voice of the Spirit, attentive to his promptings in the depths of our conscience and to his manifestations in the events of history.

Hail Mary, Woman of sorrows, Mother of the living! Virgin spouse beneath the Cross, the new Eve, Be our guide along the paths of the world. Teach us to experience and to spread the love of Christ, to stand with you before the innumerable crosses on which your Son is still crucified.

Hail Mary, woman of faith, First of the disciples! Virgin Mother of the Church, help us always to account for the hope that is in us, with trust in human goodness and the Father’s love. Teach us to build up the world beginning from within: in the depths of silence and prayer, in the joy of fraternal love, in the unique fruitfulness of the Cross.

Holy Mary, Mother of believers, Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us.


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