How did St. Teresa of Avila express her Marian devotion and how might we imitate her? Although St. Teresa did not write a major work on the Blessed Virgin Mary, there is no doubt the importance she played in St. Teresa’s life, from her youth up through her founding many monasteries. One may ask, what place did the rosary have in her prayer life? What was the importance of the Virgin Mary in St. Teresa’s prayer? Did she have some mystical encounters involving the Blessed Mother? And, for today, how might we grow in our devotion to our Heavenly Mother?
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Scripture: Lk 1:35
“The Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila, Vol. 1, 2, and 3,” Translated by Kieran Kavanaugh, OCD and Otilio Rodriguez, OCD; ICS Publications.
“Sermon in a Sentence: a Treasury of Quotations on the Spiritual Life, Vol. 4, St. Teresa of Avila,” Selected and Arranged by John P. McClermon; Ignatius Press
“Saint Teresa of Jesus and the Virgin Mary” found at www.ocd.pcn.nt/mad_en1.htm
Guest Anthony Mullen gives us the “Highlights of Holiness” from the Conference on the Flame of Love from which we can all grow. Several nationally known speakers representing different aspects of the Marian Movement came together to share from their perspectives about the trials and tribulations of our times leading up to the “Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.” What will help us in these times? What has God given us to help us grow in grace and virtue? How will our “little” efforts unite with Mary and the Holy Spirit to bring the New Pentecost? How will YOU respond??? What is the “Divine Antidote?” What does the “Flame of Love” have to do with it?
“The Flame of Love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary: the Spiritual Diary of Elizabeth Kindelmann” by Elizabeth Kindelmann
“True Devotion to Mary” by St. Louis De Montfort, Trans. By Fr. Frederick Faber; Tan Books.
Home website of the “Flame of Love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary”
Another important feast associated with the Order of Carmel, and dedicated to Our Blessed Mother, is the Feast of Our Lady, Mother of Divine Grace. This week Mark and Frances discuss the brief history of this important Feast, and the unique role that Our Blessed Mother plays in dispensing grace to the Church. They also discuss a very unique image of Our Blessed Mother known as the Lady of the Bowed Head. This image has its own unique story, which they discuss, and they also touch on an important Carmelite Venerable who is directly associated with this image. Again, for anyone who wishes to learn more about the Blessed Mother’s role as dispenser of grace, this is an important conversation.
This week all Carmelite celebrate one of the most significant feasts in our calendar year, the Feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. In this conversation Mark and Frances discuss briefly the history of this great feast, but then go on to discuss its relevance for the Church today. They discuss the importance of Mary’s Patronage to the Order of Carmel, and then they take their listeners through a full nine day novena in Honor of Our Lady of Mt.Carmel. The novena presents nine different titles by which Mary is known, and then offers specific reflections and prayers associated with those titles. This is a very important conversation for anyone who has a special devotion to the Blessed Mother.
We are all familiar with the Rosary, but do we all understand its history or the importance so many Saints have place on reciting it daily. In this informative and inspiring program, Mark and Frances discuss the origins of the prayer of the Rosary. They touch on the details of our Lady having shared this prayer with St. Dominic. They also discuss the importance it played in bringing about a great military and spiritual victory in the Battel of Lepanto. Padre Pio of course was very dedicated to the Rosary, and this program discusses his emphatic counsel to use the Rosary as our weapon against the evils of this world. Pope John Paul II was likewise very dedicated to the Rosary and this program outlines the additions he brought to this form of prayer. Finally, Mark and Frances discuss the role of Mary and the use of the Rosary as a means of joining the Blessed Mother in contemplative prayer.
During this program Mark and Frances continue on the theme of Mary and the work of Evangelization. Here they discuss a presentation by Carmelite Friar and General Delegate to the OCDS, Fr. Debastiani, on our Carmelite call to mission. The presentation begins by reflecting on the contemplative nature of the call to Carmel. The importance of encountering the living God in the intimate experience of personal prayer. Fr. Debastiani then goes on to explain the importance of the call to community. Echoing the writings of St. Teresa of Avila, Fr. Debastiani points our that for Carmelites, and for that matter all Christians, must nurture the fruit of prayer in a community of faithful believers. It is in a supportive community that we both engage in conversation about our faith, are both challenged and supported on our journey and enter into community prayer to lift up the entire body of Christ.
Mark welcomes Mary Pyper, Treasurer for Radio Maria US, into the studio to discuss some recent work she has been doing around a school of Evangelization and the role of Mary in the work of Evangelization. Acknowledging Mary’s role in both bringing our Lord into the world, and in being the one who initiated His public ministry at the wedding in Cana, this conversations centers around the role of Mary in helping us develop our interior life. It is this very interior life and intimate relationship with the Lord that then allows us to carry on the great commission of spreading the Gospel. For many of us, the work of Evangelization and spreading the Gospel message may be the simple presence we offer to those in need or those who need to witness a person who lives with Hope. In order to be that person for others, we must draw from a well of deep prayer and an interior understanding of how God is working in our life. The best example of this from scripture is the Blessed Mother’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth. Here we see that the fruit of Mary’s rich prayer life, and her role as Christ Bearer is easily recognized by her cousin. In our lives we are also called on to be bearers of Christ, and Evangelizers of the message of hope. In this effort, the Blessed Mother serves as both our model and our and our guide.
This particular conversation picks up on the theme of Mary and her role in helping us develop a deep interior life. Moving from the previous conversation, which focused largely on her earthly life, this particular program moves to an understanding of Mary’s role in heaven. Mark and Frances explore what is unique about the Church’s teaching on Mary’s powerful intercession. They also propose the compelling idea so often expressed around the life of Mary, in both her heavenly role in and her earthly manifestations and apparitions, that Mary knows the great ‘secret.’ Part of our call in coming to a deeper understanding and Devotion to Mary, is to pray that she might reveal her secret to us, and help us to understand how we might apply it to our individual lives. This conversation is rich in sound doctrine, but never looses the theme of the need for all of us to understand how to make practical use of this information and be able to apply it to our daily lives.
What is the role of Mary, the Mother of God, in helping to form us in our interior life. This is a question so central to Catholic teaching and the spiritual life, but yet there is still relatively little instruction on just how we can work with the Blessed Mother to assist us and help us along our journey. In this conversation, Mark and Frances explore the writings of the famous Dominican, Fr. Garrigou Lagrange, and his wonderful work on the role of Mary in our interior life. This conversation explores Mary’s earthly life and the model that her life presents, through the mysteries of the rosary, of how we too might respond to God’s call to become Christ bearers. Mark and Frances explore Mary’s unique role at the Incarnation, her role as mediator, her participation in Christ’s passion and her significant role in God’s plan of salvation. The conversation also explores how Mary, through her own merits, is able to assist each of us personally, in coming to understand and fulfill God’s unique plan for our lives.
Have you ever wondered why there is an ‘Our Lady of Mt. Carmel?’ Or what it is that is unique about this title for our Blessed Mother? In this conversation, originally presented on the eve of the feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Mark and Frances discuss the history of the title Our Blessed Mother took, and how it became the source of the Order we know today as Carmelites. They also discuss the different stages of transition through the history of the Order, and perhaps most importantly, they present some of the unique aspects of this title. They discuss the significance of the location of Mt. Carmel, its history as a rich garden of flowers, a region which produces both wine and healing oils, and the place of battle for Elijah. Mark and Frances also discuss what is unique about Mary’s patronage over the Order of Carmel, and the benefits its members enjoy through their special relationship with her.