Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Mary, Our Queen

Today the Church celebrates the Queenship of Mary. As Americans we do not have first-hand experience with living in a monarchy so what does it mean that the Blessed Mother is Queen?

I highly recommend Scott Hahn’s book, Hail, Holy Queen: The Mother of God in the Word of God. This book opened my eyes and my heart to the mystery of the Queenship of Mary.

In the prayer of the Church we get a glimpse of Mary’s role as Queen. For centuries the Church has prayed to Mary under this title, for example, in this beautiful prayer:

“Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope.
To you do we cry, poor banished children of Eve.
To you do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate, your eyes of mercy toward us,
and after this exile, show us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
Sung in Latin it is the hauntingly beautiful “Salve Regina”.

There is also the beautiful Easter hymn and prayer “Regina Coeli,” which in English is:
“Queen of Heaven rejoice, Alleluia;
for He whom you were worthy to bear, Alleluia,
has risen as He said, Alleluia!”

In the Rosary we meditate on the Coronation of Mary as we pray the fifth Glorious Mystery.

What does all of this mean for us? As Queen, Mary has the ear of the King! Her Son loves her, defers to her, trusts her. He will listen to her as she brings our cares and concerns to Him. Pope Benedict XVI has written that: “precisely because Mary is with God and in God, she is very close to each one of us. While she lived on this earth she could only be close to a few people. Being in God, who is actually ‘within’ all of us, Mary shares in this closeness to God. Our Lady knows our hearts, can hear our prayers, can help us with her motherly kindness. She always listens to us and, being Mother of the Son, participates in the power of the Son and his goodness. We can always entrust the whole of our lives to this Mother.” (From August issue of MAGNIFICAT).

When I was praying about this post today, I asked the Blessed Mother what it was that I should write. In my heart I experienced this conviction: “Tell them that I love them.” That thought deeply touched my own heart because I know it is true. What more is there to say.

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