Cultivate a special love for Mary. Saint John Mary Vianney used to confide: “After Jesus, my first love is Mary.” If you listen to Mary you will not lose your way. Whatever you undertake in her name will not fail. Honor her and you will gain eternal life. (Cardinal Van Thuan, Five Loaves and Two Fish)


Mary points to Christ not simply as an ideal or a symbol or a model disciple (although she is this and also the first) but in truth as a person and as a mother. One of the greatest joys of the Christian life is found in encountering Mary and coming to have a relationship with her. Mary will speak to our hearts if we are willing to listen, she will help guide us along the way and she will protect us with her maternal love. Mary knows Christ uniquely and she is generous is sharing this appreciation of her son. When we encounter Mary we find hope.