Mary on My Mind

These days I am preparing for three events about Mary: a day of recollection, a two-day retreat, and a presentation Why and How to Teach about Mary: Fifty Nifty Ideas (At Least) at the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) convention in Dallas. That talk draws on activities in my latest book, Leading Young People to Mary. As a Sister of Notre Dame, I’m proud to say that I have four books on our Blessed Mother published. The most popular, and my favorite, is Heart to Heart with Mary: A Yearly Devotional.

Frequently people let me know how much that book of reflections from Mary means to them. It’s uncanny how the reading for the day seems tailor-made for the person reading it. (That’s the Holy Spirit at work!) They order copies of the book for their relatives and friends. The most touching news was that at a funeral for a young woman the book was placed on her casket and a portion of it was read in the eulogy.

So today as we begin a new month, I’m sharing the reflection from that book for that day. I hope that it is just what one of my blog readers needs to hear today!

Guilt, Be Gone!

February 1

My child, do past sins and embarrassing, uncomfortable memories weigh like heavy stones on your heart? If so, this saddens me, for I want nothing more than for you to be completely happy. You are only human, prone to weaknesses and lapses. But you are also a beloved child of God and my own dear child. We love and understand you, no matter what.

If only you would see yourself as I see you: a reflection of God’s image and likeness, and a person whose destiny is eternal glory. If only you would love yourself as I love you. I know you through and through and realize that you desire to be good and to follow in the way of my son. Let the past failings stored in your mind melt away as you turn your heart toward God and receive his mercy.

I will gladly obtain many blessings for you from my divine son to help you obey God and live the Gospel values. Rise above your guilt and embrace grace.

™  What sin or fault do you find most difficult to overcome? Ask Mary for the grace to be free of it once and for all.

Here are a few depictions of Mary that I found unusual as I was preparing my PowerPoint show on her:

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