Spiritual Reading for Rogation Tuesday – Fifth Week After Easter ~ St Alphonsus Liguori

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Spiritual Reading


St. Ephrem, reflecting on the present order of Provi­ dence, by which God wills that all who are saved should be saved by the means of Mary, thus addresses her: “0 Lady, cease not to watch over us ; preserve and guard us under the wings of thy compassion and mercy, for, after God, we have no hope but in thee.” St. Thomas of Villanova repeats the same thing, calling her : “our only refuge, help, and asylum.” St. Bernard seems to give the reason for this when he says : ” See, 0 man, the designs of God-designs by which He is able to dispep.se His mercy more abundantly to us; for, desiring to redeem the whole human race, He has placed the whole price of redemption in the hands of Mary, that she may dispense it at will.”
In the book of Exodus we read that God commanded Moses to make a mercy-seat of purest gold, because
it was thence that He would speak to him : Thou shalt make also a propitiatory of the purest gold … Thence will 1 give orders, and will speak to thee-(Exod. xxv. 17, 22). St. Andrew of Crete says that “the whole world embraces Mary as being this propitiatory.” And, commenting on his words, a pious author exclaims : “Thou, 0 Mary, art the propitiatory of the whole world. From thee does our most compassionate Lord speak to our hearts ; from thee He speaks words of pardon and mercy ; from thee He bestows His gifts ; from thee all good flows to us.” And therefore, before the Divine Word took flesh in the womb of Mary, God sent an Archangel to ask her con sent : because He willed that the world should receive the Incarnate Word through her, and that she should be the source of every good. Hence St. Ireneus remarks that as Eve was seduced by a fallen angel to flee from God, so Miary was led to receive God into her womb, obeying . a good Angel; and thus by her obedience repaired Eve’s disobedience, and became her advocate, and that of the whole human race. ” If Eve disobeyed God, yet Mary was persuaded to obey God, that the Virgin Mary might become the advocate of the virgin Eve. And as the human race was bound to death through a virgin, it is saved through a Virgin.” And Blessed Raymond Jordano also says that “every good, every help, every grace that men have received and will receive from God until the end of time came, and will come to them by the intercession and through the hands of Mary.”
The devout Blosius, then, might well exclaim: “0 Mary, thou who art so loving and gracious towards all who love thee, tell me, who can be so infatuated and unfortunate as not to love thee ? Thou, in the midst of their doubts and difficulties, enlightenest the minds of all who, in their afflictions, have recourse to thee. Thou encouragest those who fly to thee in time of danger ; thou succourest those who call upon thee ; thou, after thy Divine Son, art the certain salvation of thy faithful ser­vants. Hail, then, 0 hope of those who are in despair; 0 succour of those who are abandoned. 0 Mary, thou art all-powerful, for thy Divine Son, to honour thee, complies instantly with all thy desires.”

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