Marian Consecration and the Conversion of America

The United States of America are badly in need of conversion. My readers, I think, will take this as axiomatic, so I shall not attempt to prove it. Instead, I would like to propose, in very simple terms and briefly, that Marian consecration is a most excellent way to bring about the conversion of America (i.e., the great majority of Americans) to the one, true Faith.

Why? The answer is quite simple. Saint Maximilian Kolbe reveals it in these tender and grave words addressed to the Holy Virgin: “For wherever you enter you obtain the grace of conversion and growth in holiness, since it is through your hands that all graces come to us from the most Sacred Heart of Jesus” (from his Act of Consecration). The Saint goes on to explain that “God is hers [Mary’s] with all the treasures of grace for the conversion and sanctification of souls. … In this act of consecration we beg her to use us to destroy the whole serpent coiled about the earth, the serpent representing the various heresies.”

Mary is the Mediatrix of all graces: that is why the grace of conversion will come through her. Our dear Founder, Father Leonard Feeney, explained it this way:

From Mary, all grace overflows into us. She is the Mediatrix of All Graces. Nothing comes from God to us except through Mary. Nothing goes from us to God except through her. Saint Bernardine of Siena says, “All the gifts and graces that we receive from God are given by Mary, to whom, when, and as she pleases.” Saint Louis Marie de Montfort says that no one gets into Heaven without venerating the Blessed Virgin Mary. (from “The Mother of God”)

Lex orandi lex credendi. The Law of praying is the law of believing. All prayer and devotion has a doctrinal foundation, and the practice of Marian Consecration is founded upon the doctrine of Mary’s universal mediation. If Mary were not the mediatrix of grace, this form of devotion would make no sense, as Saint Maximilian Maria Kolbe himself observed.

When I speak of “Marian consecration,” I mean personal consecration, whereby an individual consecrates himself according to the formula of Saint Louis de Montfort, that of Saint Maximilian Kolbe, or some other act of Marian consecration. But I do not restrict my meaning to personal devotion. There is a great tradition of consecrating entire nations to Our Lady. (So, at Fatima, the Blessed Virgin promised that Russia would convert to Catholicism when the Pope, together with all the bishops of the world, consecrates that great nation to her Immaculate Heart.) Portugal, Spain, France, Poland, and other Catholic nations have been consecrated to Our Lady at various times and have reaped heavenly blessings from these acts.

The United States were dedicated to the Immaculate Conception by Bishop John Carroll, its first bishop, in 1792. In 1846, all the bishops of the nation officially named the Immaculate Conception the Patroness of the United States. An act of Consecration to the Immaculate Conception was made by the Bishops of the U.S. on the occasion of the dedication of the National Basilica in 1959 (the formula used was the same as, or very close to, the one employed by Bishop Carroll). Finally, in 2006 the Bishops renewed this act, this time consecrating the nation to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.

If the acts of our hierarchy are to have any lasting effect, we Catholics of every state in life must make, renew, and live our own personal Marian consecrations. All advocates of total consecration to the Blessed Virgin tell us that the consecration is not a passing act. For it to be fruitful, it must be lived. We Catholic Americans have great examples of living the Marian consecration in the persons of Saint Katharine Drexel and the Servant of God, Father Thomas Fredrick Price.

I should like to emphasize that Marian consecration is not a phenomenon on the edges of Christianity. It is not merely a form of devotion that grew out of this or that school of piety. Although different schools have given it shape — especially the “French School,” out of which comes Saint Louis de Montfort — Marian consecration is a thing central to the Gospel. This is because Christians are by grace what Christ is by nature, children of God. Christ is constantly renewing the mystery of His Incarnation in the Mystical Body, and Mary is an active participant, being Mother of the Body as well as of the Head. Beyond that, the Christian life is a conformity to Christ, and by drawing close to the Sinless Mother of God, we are made more conformable to Jesus, for she is the “great mold of God,” as Saint Louis de Montfort said. Further, in giving Our Lady and Saint John to one another at the Foot of the Cross, Our Lord entrusted — consecrated, even — all the members of his Mystical Body to His Immaculate Mother. What He did on the Cross, we must second by our own volitional acts, and the act of perfect consecration to the Immaculate Virgin is an excellent way to do this. For, in so doing, we invite into our souls her who obtains for us “the grace of conversion and growth in holiness.”

We can apply to the conversion of America the words of the Servant of God, Cardinal August Hlond, Salesian priest, founder of the Society of Christ, and primate of Poland:

“Victory, if it comes, will certainly be a victory through Mary”!

(Our store site has several resources to help in making and living one’s Marian consecration.)

  • Thanks for this article which is well written as always, and tells me everything about the existence of your website, and assures me that the cult of the virgin Mary is alive and well. In my parting comment to your website this is what I have to say:

    Nowhere in the Holy Bible are we authorized to pray to anyone else but God. Praying to Mary and venerating her is an invention of the church founded by the Emperor Constantine I in the fourth century, and not the church founded by the Messiah Jesus Christ in the first century. The idea that Mary should be venerated is based on the fact that she replaces certain female figures in ancient pagan mythology/religions. Her veneration is also based on another unscriptural doctrine based on pagan beliefs called the Trinity, which says that Jesus is God. Nowhere in the Holy Bible is there any mention of a Trinity. That is another invention of the church founded by Constantine I. Actually Constantine was never baptized until he was on his death bed. What became the Roman Catholic Church was more of any invention of a bunch of pagan priests who jumped on the Constantine bandwagon when he issued his Edict of Toleration in 313 A.D. Everyone knows he had a strong preference (based on a guilt complex) for what was left of the Christian community(if anything) after the Diocletian persecutions, an opportune time to come up with a replacement religion based on pagan idolatry.

    Sorry, but that is my opinion and my parting contribution to your site. If anyone wants Marian devotion, they can also go to another religion (invented in the seventh century) and try the Muslim Quran in which Mary receives more attention than she ever did in the New Testament, muchless the Old Testament. Goodbye!

  • Dear Mr. Sifdol:

    Your theory of the beginnings of the Catholic Church are notably self-defeating, for this remarkable explanation — entailing a Dan Brown-type conspiracy theory — is nowhere to be found until considerably after the Protestant Reformation, when radical sects such as the Seventh-Day Adventists and Jehovah’s Witnesses invented it.

    Perhaps you can answer these consequent questions: If it was Constantine who started the Catholic Church, just how did he get all 318 bishops (and other clerics) of the as-yet-non-extant Church from all over the world to be part of the conspiracy? And how is it that the notable writers in their midst (e.g., St. Athanasius) defended the Council based upon “tradition” — something which antedated A.D. 325, as well as Holy Scripture? Did Constantine threaten them with torture? Not likely. Unlike the Arians, the orthodox believers (i.e., the Catholics) had many confessors in their midst, i.e., people who had been tortured for the faith in the persecutions before the peace of Constantine. One of these was St. Paphnutius of Egypt, who had one eye ripped out and the sinews of the back of one of his knees severed in confession of the true Faith. It’s doubtful that such men would be cowed into submission by an upstart Emperor.

    Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the doctrine of the Trinity, and that of Christ’s divinity are in the Bible. What I can’t find in the Bible — and neither can you — is the canon of Scripture. I take it from the authority of the Catholic Church. From what God-ordained authority do you get the official list of all the inspired books of the Bible?

  • Dear Brother Andre Marie:
    Thanks for taking the time to reply. We are at an impasse and a crossroads, so to speak.

    Believe me when I tell you that I am definitely not a conspiracy theorist by any stretch of the imagination. Dan Brown’s stuff is nonsense. Actually he did more to put the real Opus Dei in the spotlight. Anyway, I really do believe that Christianity became a very different religion after Diocletian. We know for a fact that there was a lot of turmoil during all of those “conclaves” the bishops held after Constantine I and well into the 5th Century. In fact it was not until 451 A.D. that the doctrine of the Trinity became a subject one could not argue about without dire results. Why did it take that long to define something, and threaten to beat people over the head if they did not believe it, if it had been accepted for so long by the majority of Christians before they became the official religion people of the empire? What about all those so called heresies?

  • Dear Brother Andre Marie:

    Here is something that will cheer you up whenever you feel in a gloomy mood. There is an article on the website of the Catholic League For Religious and Civil Rights with the title “A Survey of Chick Publications” by William A. Donohue. I certainly agree with the comments about Chick Publications. It is interesting that Chick Publications is not on the SPLC list of hate groups. (Unless I missed something) Guess it is still very acceptable to be anti-Catholic. Anyway, in the last paragraph of the article, Mr. Donohue says:

    “What makes Chick tick? In one four-letter word, it’s called ENVY. Chick writers attribute fantastic power to the
    Catholic Church precisely because they see in the Church a strength and resourcefulness that is absent in Protestantism. In the West, in particular, Chick authors believe that Protestantism should have eclipsed Catholicism long ago. But is hasn’t. for reasons reasonable people can debate. What can’t be debated is that those driven by envy (with a little madness thrown in) will never cease their offensive against the Church. The one true Church, that is.”

  • Correction:

    Sentence should read “But it hasn’t, for reasons that reasonable people can debate.”

    Thanks.

    P.S. If you have never tapped into Chick Publications you should do so. If I ever feel gloomy and need a good laugh, Chick Publications will give it to me. Of course they are very serious about their artwork “bringing people to Christ,” but they should be on Comedy time. I know you will love their anti-Catholic “Come to Jesus” tracts.

  • Philangelus

    Speaking of conversion, when I went to find the defense of the Blessed Mother of God in one of my books in my library, “The Glories of Mary,” by St. Alphonsus Liguori (which every one should read) I found an insert of the “Salutation to Mary.” I am not sure how this got into this book but here it is. I also found it online. St. Alphonsus, by the way, has an appendix at the end of his book called ‘Answers to Critics’ which rightly defends the Blessed Mother, Queen of the Universe.

    Permissu Ordinarii Dioec. Dublimen, Die 2 February 1956
    Salutation to Mary written by St. John Eudes

    A copy was found in a book belonging to St. Margret Mary after her death Zealously propagated by Père Paul de Moll (Belgian) O.S.B. (1824 – 1896)

    “This Salutation is so beautiful! Recite it daily. From her throne in Heaven the Blessed Virgin will bless you, and you must make the sign of the Cross. Yes! Yes! if only you could see – Our Lady blesses you. I know it.” “Offered for the conversion of a sinner it would be impossible not to be granted.”
    (Père Paul de Moll, O.S.B.)

    Hail Mary! Daughter of God the Father,
    Hail Mary! Mother of God the Son,
    Hail Mary! Spouse of God the Holy Ghost,
    Hail Mary! Temple of the Most Blessed Trinity,
    Hail Mary! Celestial Rose of the ineffable love of God.
    Hail Mary! Virgin pure and humble, of whom the King of Heaven willed to be born and with thy milk to be nourished.
    Hail Mary! Virgin of virgins,
    Hail Mary! Queen of Martyrs, whose soul a sword transfixed,
    Hail Mary! Lady most Blessed! unto whom all power in Heaven and earth is given,
    Hail Mary! my Queen and my Mother! my Life, my Sweetness, and my Hope,
    Hail Mary! Mother most Amiable,
    Hail Mary! Mother most Admirable,
    Hail Mary! Mother of Divine Love,
    Hail Mary! IMMACULATE; Conceived without sin!
    Hail Mary! Full of Grace! the Lord is with thee! Blessed art thou among women! And blessed is the Fruit of thy womb, JESUS!

    Blessed by thy Spouse, St. Joseph,
    Blessed by thy Father, St. Joachim,
    Blessed by thy Mother, St. Anne,
    Blessed by thy Guardian, St. John,
    Blessed by thy Holy Angel, St. Gabriel,

    Glory be to God the Father, who chose thee,
    Glory be to God the Son, who loved thee,
    Glory be to God the Holy Ghost, who espoused thee,

    Glorious Virgin Mary, may all men love and praise thee,
    Holy Mary, Mother of God! pray for us and bless us, now and at death in the Name of JESUS, thy Divine Son!
    * * * * * *
    The holy Benedictine, Père Paul de Moll, was born in 1824. His life was spent in great sanctity, in extraordinary virtue, and in working wonders. Early in his religious life, being at the point of death, Our Blessed Lord with Our Lady, St. Joseph and St. Benedict appeared to him and said: “Be healed! … I will grant all that thou ask of Me for others.” He died at the Abbey of Termonde in 1896, and three years later his body was found intact from corruption. His Cause is now in Rome.

    At each recitation of this prayer so pleasing to Mary, let us offer to her through the hands of Père Paul, one of the Apostate Countries of to-day, begging her blessing upon it and her intercession for its conversion.

    It is requested that all undertake to widely spread and make known this Salutation to the Glory of Mary.

  • Pingback: The Lady, the Rock, and the Beast — Catholicism.org - Saint Benedict Center, The Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary()