Sunday, May 07, 2006

Mary's Month

In the Catholic Church, the month of May is traditionally dedicated to Mary, Mother of Our Lord. Most parishes schedule recitation of the Rosary either before or after daily Mass during this month.

May 13 is the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, which commemorates the appearances of Mary to the three shepherd children in Portugal in 1917. Pope John Paul II had a special reverence for the Blessed Mother and was convinced that Mary had intervened to save his life during the assassination attempt in 1981. Ironically, that attack occurred on May 13.

Shortly after Pete died, I read "Looking for Mary: Or, The Blessed Mother and Me" by Beverly Donofrio. It had been a Christmas gift from a dear friend. The book is a down-to-earth, modern day, personal account of how Mary quietly calls us to prayer and greater sanctitude. As Donofrio describes her, like any good Jewish mother, Mary never yields in trying to influence our hearts. She picks the right time to slip into our lives and draw us closer to Our Lord.

It was certainly a relevant time for me to be reading that book. After I finished it, I loaned it to my daughter. Now, we discover that we are both feeling compelled to pray the Rosary regularly, just as Mary requests.

As Our Lord discovered at Cana, it's tough to say "no" to the Blessed Mother.