Cloistered Dominican Nuns Corpus Christi Monastery

Consolatrix Afflictorum – Ora Pro Nobis

2015.11.21 BVM Comforter of the afflicted IMG_4056

Today we joyfully celebrate the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. On this day, when Mary was three years old, her parents, Saints Joachim and Anne brought Mary to the Temple and consecrated her to the Lord.

Our Holy Father, Pope Francis also set this day as a day to pray for and support cloistered religious. It is called Pro Orantibus Day (“For those who pray”), also known as World Day of Cloistered Life.

How do you pray for cloistered religious? For their holiness and for more vocations of course! Cloistered religious are at the heart of the Church and therefore we are always in need of more fervent vocations to help pump the blood of grace to the rest of the body through a life of unceasing prayer and sacrifices. You may also encourage young women whom you know to embrace this noble way of life by directing them to our discernment days that we’re offering each year.

But what do these cloistered religious and Mary have in common? We’ve committed our existence totally to Christ, to do his will, and to do all for the glory of the Father. And this is what it means to be happy and blessed.

Would you also want to be happy and blessed? Let us learn from our great Doctor of the Church, St. Augustine:

The Virgin Mary is both holy and blessed, and yet the Church is greater than she. Mary is a part of the Church, a member of the Church, a holy, an eminent -– the most eminent -– member, but still only a member of the entire body…

Now, beloved, give me your whole attention, for you also are members of Christ; you also are the body of Christ. Consider how you yourselves can be among those of whom the Lord said: Here are my mother and my brothers. Do you wonder how you can be the mother of Christ? He himself said: Whoever hears and fulfills the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and my sister and my mother. As for our being the brothers and sisters of Christ, we can understand this because although there is only one inheritance and Christ is the only Son, his mercy would not allow him to remain alone. It was his wish that we too should be heirs of the Father, and co-heirs with himself.

Now having said that all of you are brothers of Christ, shall I not dare to call you his mother? Much less would I dare to deny his own words. Tell me how Mary became the mother of Christ, if it was not by giving birth to the members of Christ? You, to whom I am speaking, are the members of Christ. Of whom were you born? ““Of Mother Church”,” I hear the reply of your hearts. You became sons of this mother at your baptism, you came to birth then as members of Christ. Now you in your turn must draw to the font of baptism as many as you possibly can. You became sons when you were born there yourselves, and now by bringing others to birth in the same way, you have it in your power to become the mothers of Christ.

Deo Gratias!

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