I wonder when I’ll get used to having anything delivered on Sunday. This time it was a used book: Purest of All Lilies: The Virgin Mary in the Spirituality of St. Faustina, by Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC. (Links at the end of this post.) The back cover reads that “the Virgin Mary is a spiritual mother of St. Faustina and us” and that the book is an “in-depth study of the very special relationship between the Virgin Mary and St. Faustina.”
“Before Holy Communion I saw the Blessed Mother inconceivably beautiful. Smiling at me She said to me: ‘My daughter, at God’s command I am to be in a special and exclusive way your Mother; but I desire that you, too, in a special way, be My child” (Diary, 1414).
Fr. George Kosicki, CSB, quoted on the back cover of Purest of All Lilies.
Mary is the antidote for the crisis of womanhood we find ourselves facing. The Marian Option is not like the many other options being written about now, based on saints and noble persons. Because Mary is not like any other saint or noble person. Mary is the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, Full of Grace, Mother of Mercy, the Queen Mother of the King of the Universe. Those are some pretty important titles. And Mary is a pretty important Woman. (Ahem. That’s a deliberate echo of the Woman in Genesis, the Gospel of John, and the Apocalypse, also by John, the Beloved Disciple. More on that in posts about another book, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of Mary.)
“God really sends the antidote to the problem of each era…What we’re really facing in the culture today is a crisis of womanhood, so in light of that it makes perfect sense that our Lady would be the antidote to that. Those who have devotion to her, who are striving to be like her, would be the ones that can renew the culture based on the kinds of destruction we’re seeing in western civilization.”
Carrie Gress on Women of Grace. (1) talking about her book, the Marian Option. (2)
Watch the video here on the blog for the rest of that interview. Other links follow the end of this post.
This week I bought three books by Carrie Gress. Tonight’s post is about her book, The Marian Option (link to the book at the end of this post). I haven’t read it yet (so many books, so little effective time management on my part) but I have watched some of her interviews about it. Below see her appearance on Women of Grace in February 2019.
I’ve written before about the connection between the Divine Mercy devotion and abortion. Tonight I’ve been reading an article by Carrie Gress (also added three of her books to the booklist today) on the Hidden Connection Between Mary and Divine Mercy. She points out something I hadn’t really thought about: St. Maximillian Kolbe, St. Faustina Kowalska, and Pope St. John Paul II were all living in Krakow at about the same time. I don’t think I ever thought about that before. Links to article and books mentioned at the end of this post. (See note about a tour with Steve Ray in the links at the end of the post.)
As Eve played an essential role in our downfall, Mary played an essential role in our redemption. And she still does. How, you ask? Consider these parallels. First, concerning Eve, then Mary as the New Eve, some points from the second chapter of Brant Pitre’s book, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of Mary.
Today is Mother’s Day and it’s also May, the month of Mary, so I’m studying the Church’s teachings about Mary because I am forever being accosted by people (even some Catholics) who do not understand what the Church teaches about the Blessed Mother. They don’t even know what the Church teaches, much less what it means. But to get Mary wrong is to get Jesus wrong. A flawed Mariology leads to a flawed Christology because the teachings about Mary are intimately bound up with the teachings about her Son.
I was browsing the web, wondering what to write about tonight for the series. I was re-reading an article at Catholic Answers titled Mary, the Mother of God,** and a window popped up in the lower right-hand corner asking if I have devotion to Mary. Well, yes, I do, I replied. Then it said, Let’s celebrate, and offered me a free ebook about Mary. I ❤️ ebooks and the Blessed Virgin Mary so I said, YES. A few seconds later I was glancing through 20 Answers: Mary, by Tim Staples. Thank you, Blessed Mother and Catholic Answers!
I’ll just give you a couple of samples here. First, something most of us Catholics have heard at some point from non-Catholic family, friends, or even strangers: that the Bible expressly forbids praying to Mary and the Saints because it condemns all communication with the dead. Period.