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HOLINESS THROUGH MARY
Human respect, often called common prudence, respect for the opinions of others, and the like, paralyses the powers of action of those who are called to be apostles and reduces works for souls to triviality.
Living in the midst of great communities of pagans or non-Catholics or the lapsed, the faithful make little or no effort to convert them and the graces God offers are returned unused.
Aware of this, the Army of Mary sets itself to a deliberate campaign against the operation of the spirit of human approval in its members. The principal means employed are insistence upon sound and strict discipline and constant indoctrination of the fact that human respect in a Child of Mary is comparable to cowardice in a soldier. Love, loyalty and discipline, if they are genuine, will certainly result in sacrifice and courage. “What a shame to be the delicate member of a Thorn-crowned Head!” … words of St Bernard which the member must constantly apply to himself.
“If you fought only when you felt ready for the fray, where would be your merit?” asks St Therese of Lisieux.
“What does it matter even if you have no courage, provided you behave as though you were really brave? If you feel too lazy to pick up a bit of thread, and yet do so for the love of Jesus, you gain more merit than for a much nobler action done on an impulse of fervour. Instead of grieving, be glad that, by allowing you to feel your own weakness, Our Lord is furnishing you with an occasion of saving a greater number of souls.”
– Excerpts from “Holiness Through Mary” by Fr Francis Ripley, copied from a pamphlet by the Universal Rosary Association. For the Association’s details, please visit the link above (Part 1)