Cloistered Dominican Nuns Corpus Christi Monastery

The Second Greatest Story

The time had come.  A deep silence hung in the darkness of the night while the beads slipped through his fingers, his mind accompanying Mary through the mysteries of Jesus’ life.  Her humble response to the message of the angel…the poverty of His birth…the fear that gripped her heart when she and Joseph lost Him in Jerusalem, followed by the joy and relief of finding Him…the sword which pierced her heart while she stood and watched a soldier’s lance pierce His…the cold, deep darkness of His tomb, accompanied by unwavering faith that God would bring about a dawn…

Ah, that was the one that really spoke to him, that was the mystery to which he clung that night.  Trust.  Trust in God’s mercy.  Trust that I, your mother, will guide you to Him, He who is that fountain of infinite mercy.  As he raised his head, he could see the earliest rays of light beginning to illumine the world.  And he breathed a deep sigh of peace, believing, knowing that the battle of Lepanto would be to God’s glory and her honor.

Today we honor Our Lady of the Rosary and remember the battle of Lepanto – a decisive sea battle between the kingdoms of Christendom and Turkish invaders.  The invaders surpassed the Christian kingdoms in ships and firepower.  To lose this battle meant all of Europe would be thrown open and potentially overrun.  The Muslim invaders were known to be cruel and uncompromising in their treatment of Christians.  Things looked very bleak.  But under the example and leadership of Pope Pius V, the peoples of Europe appealed to a higher power.  Begging for God’s mercy through Mary’s intercession, the people entrusted themselves to Mary and prayed the Rosary for the victory of God’s mercy on the world.

And today we are excited to share with you a wonderful series from the Augustine Institute: Divine Mercy in the Second Greatest Story Ever Told.  You can also watch the trailer here. Our community has spent our culture nights of the past few months watching the 30-minute long episodes.  The series, narrated by Father Michael Gaitley, MIC, has taken us from the fall of Adam and Eve, through the Old Testament up to present-day history, tracing God’s plan for mercy.  What’s the connection between devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Divine Mercy?  How is the history of Poland key to God’s plan of mercy?  What about the prophetic apparitions of Fatima, the witness of Saint Maximillian Kolbe and the papacy of Saint John Paul II?  The series weaves together all these devotions, people and events (and more), uncovering God’s plan of mercy for humanity, and how God’s mercy is also a personal invitation He extends to each one of us.

And Mary is the personification of God’s merciful plan.  By His grace, from her Immaculate Conception to her Assumption into heaven, she is full of His grace and obeys His will with perfect purity and love.  That is why she is so powerful an advocate and teacher for us.  Turning to Mary in times of sorrow and need is nothing new.  It was at her prompting during the wedding feast at Cana that Jesus performed His first public miracle – turning water into wine.  “They have no wine,” she compassionately relayed to Jesus.  Then, to the servants, she instructed, “do whatever He tells you.”  On the cross, Jesus gave Mary to us as a mother when he told her, “Woman, behold your son,” and told the disciple, representing all of us at the foot of the cross, “behold your mother.”  And ever since, the faithful have repeated the words of the angel Gabriel and her cousin Elizabeth as they pray, “Hail Mary, full of grace…”  We turn to her in our joys and in our need, and she always gathers us, rejoices with us, comforts us, and leads us to her Son with the encouraging words, “Do whatever He tells you,” for He is infinite mercy.

Today also marks an important event for the people of San Francisco, a day of mercy; today Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone consecrated the archdiocese to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  We may not face foreign invaders, but we are in need of mercy now more than ever.  Mary, Mother of Mercy, protect us and lead us to the fountain of Divine Mercy, our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!

Comments are closed.

Post Navigation