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District Superior's
Letter to Friends & Benefactors

May-June 2013

Dear Friends and Benefactors,

"We never give more honor to Jesus than when we honor His Mother, and we honor her simply and solely to honor Him all the more perfectly." By these words St. Louis Marie de Montfort invites us to go to Our Lady as a way leading us to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

In Fatima our dear Lady reminded us of a special way[1] to honor her: the devotion to her Immaculate Heart. Here is what she said to the three little children:

You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace.[2]

On December 10, 1925 the Blessed Virgin Mary said to Lucia:

Look, my daughter, at my Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce me at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console me and say that I promise to assist at the hour of death, with the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to me.

To our times has been given the Immaculate Heart of Mary, surrounded by thorns, outraged by so many sins but seeking reparation for them. Here is what she told the children:

Sacrifice yourselves for sinners, and say many times, especially whenever you make some sacrifice: O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.[3]

As we enter the month of Mary, let us remember to go and honor Our Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. Let us practice the five first Saturdays devotion again and again, not only once in a lifetime, but every month of every year, so as to make reparation for the sins committed against her Sorrowful Heart. If the first intention which has led us to the practice of the first Saturdays is the grace of final perseverance, it is certainly more perfect to practice this devotion in order to console Our Lady, to repair for the offenses against her Immaculate Heart, and to offer the merits of these reparations for poor sinners.

In a letter to Fr. Goncalves on June 12, 1930, Sister Lucy named the reasons Our Lord had given to her for the five Saturdays, corresponding to five kinds of offenses:

  • The blasphemies against the Immaculate Conception;

  • The blasphemies against her virginity;

  • The blasphemies against her divine maternity, refusing also to recognize her as Mother of men;

  • The blasphemies of those who intend to put in the hearts of children indifference, spite, or hate for her Immaculate Heart;

  • The blasphemies against her images.

Let us remember that the consecration of Russia that we all expect and want to be done as soon as possible and as Our Lady requested it, has been asked of the hierarchy of the Church and therefore depends on us in only a very remote way. Let us take care of what does depend on us first!

In the letter we quote above, Sister Lucy shows how this consecration is in fact an expression of the same devotion to the Immaculate Heart. She speaks about an "act of reparation and consecration of Russia" to be made by the Pope and all the bishops of the world, with the promise that one day the Holy Father would approve and recommend this devotion of reparation. It is clear that God wants, by means of the consecration of Russia and of its happy results for the Church and the world, to encourage us to enter more generously into this practice of our Faith.

Our priests make great efforts to say Mass in some of the mission chapels on the First Saturdays. It is sometimes sad to see how few people attend Mass on these days. Please, continue to be generous in complying with the request of Our Lady. Ask your pastors for the possibility of receiving communion on the following Sunday when really kept from receiving it on the first Saturday, as Our Lord mentioned to Sister Lucy in the apparition in Tuy (May 29, 1930).

And a wonderful way to increase our devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary is also to follow a spiritual retreat. It is an occasion to revive in us our love for Our Lord Jesus Christ and renew our strength, so as to follow Him more faithfully. Once again, as I did a few months ago, I would like to invite you and encourage you to follow an Ignatian retreat this year.

Finally, I wish also to express my deepest gratitude to the many and generous benefactors who have responded so charitably to our Easter appeal. We trust that the subscription to The Angelus magazine and other gifts will be of great use in your homes and will be souvenirs of our gratitude for your constant support of your chapels and priests.

With my prayers and blessing, in the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Fr. Arnaud Rostand


Footnotes

1 It is interesting to note that the devotion of the First Saturdays has been a long tradition. The Confraternity of the Rosary had the custom of dedicating 15 Saturdays in a row. In 1837 Fr. Desgnettes put this practice of the 15 First Saturdays in the Statutes of the Association of Our Lady of Victories in Paris. In 1889 Leo XIII attached a plenary indulgence to the practice of the 15 Saturdays with the possibility of receiving communion the following Sunday when impeded (1892). In 1905 St. Pius X attached a plenary indulgence to the practice of the 12 First Saturdays in honor of the Immaculate Conception. On June 13, 1912, he attached a plenary indulgence applicable to the poor souls for those who practice the First Saturdays in honor of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in reparation for the blasphemies against her name and her privileges. In 1920 Benedict XV gave new indulgences for those who would practice the First Saturdays for eight consecutive months.

2 July 13, 1917.

3 July 13, 1917.

 

 

 
 

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