Sunday 1st May 2016

Home » Featured Today » Currently Reading:

A Book Review… The Most Secure Way To Sanctity

August 24, 2014 Featured Today No Comments

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY

Totus Tuus Maria: Personal Consecration to Our Lady Following the Spiritual Teaching of St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort, by Msgr. Florian Kolfhaus (Gracewing Publishing, 168 pages, $14.91, www.gracewing.co.uk; also available at amazon.com).

The author is a priest of the Diocese of Regensburg in Germany. He works in the Secretariat of State in the Vatican, and has taken Pope St. John Paul II’s Marian motto, Totus Tuus, Maria, “Totally yours Mary” as the theme for this book, which is a companion to the Marian consecration program of St. Louis-Marie de Montfort.
The book comprises chapters with material for twelve days of preparation for the Montfortian consecration to our Lady. The author starts with the contention that we are all supposed to be striving for sanctity, and that the world needs saints.
This idea, however, is for most people somewhat off-putting, and that includes most Catholics. But as St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein) said, in a letter to her sister, “By the way, it is my conviction that it is not necessary for a saint to renounce all wishes and hopes of the world. Quite the opposite: Man is in this world to live, and he is supposed to accept all the beautiful things that are given to him with gratitude.”
So perhaps the task is not as impossible as we might imagine.
St. Louis certainly didn’t think so, and for him it was a question of living the grace of Baptism following the guidance of our Lady, our spiritual mother: that is, saints are formed in Mary, since all graces come through her mediation. And Pope Benedict did say: “Being Catholic means being Marian.”
The author denies that Consecration to Mary is “Catholic Kitsch” or a “questionable form of piety,” but rather insists that it is the “imitation of Christ through the hands of His mother, who safely guides anyone who entrusts himself to her.”
Msgr. Kolfhaus has reduced the usual thirty-three day preparation for the Montfortian consecration to a more manageable twelve days, and after an initial period of preparation, lasting three days, each day of the “novena” leading up to the consecration is partly devoted to prayer and partly to readings.
The first three days are devoted successively to an examination of our lives in relation to God, our neighbor, and ourselves, and each day, after a Scripture passage, there are “thoughts for contemplation,” which are certainly very thought-provoking. For example on the second day, in relation to love of neighbor, we are told, “It is about dedicating ourselves and giving ourselves in service to others,” and also that, “True Christian charity is always the fruit of a true love of God.”
The author recommends a thorough Confession at the end of this period, and he provides examinations of conscience to this end. As he says, “The firm will to repent and concrete resolutions for the spiritual life are the fruit of the first three days.”
At the start of the novena proper, Msgr. Kolfhaus counsels that, following the forgiveness of our sins and a new beginning, “It is ever more important to begin our ‘new’ life with magnanimity, without any compromises or half-measures,” and that is actually the purpose of the novena. To this end he recommends that some small sacrifice should be made each day.
The prayer sections of each novena chapter, for each day, have traditional Marian prayers including the rosary, while the readings include a Scripture passage, followed by a reflection, and then a section from St. Louis’ True Devotion to Mary. This is followed by some biographical information about a saint associated in one way or another with our Lady, including individuals such as St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. John Bosco, St. Bernadette, and St. Louis himself. These mini-biographies are a very useful way of illustrating the points made by St. Louis, and show how the saints became devoted to Mary in practice.
What also comes out is that they had a far from easy time, and it is astonishing to be reminded about how much they actually accomplished in the face of the obstacles they had to surmount, sometimes due to poor health, but often, sadly, due to their fellow Christians. As St. Bernadette said, the only thing she feared was bad Catholics.
What also comes across in this book is the author’s own deep devotion to our Lady, expressed particularly in his reflections on the grandeur of her role in the economy of salvation, as in this example: “Mary only desires to bring Jesus to all men. Whoever calls to Mary for help, honoring her and consecrating himself to her, can be sure that she will draw him closer to Christ. Mary and Jesus are inseparable! Where the Mother is there too is the Son!”
Or in another passage, in a commentary on the text about the marriage feast at Cana, he writes: “We call upon Mary when we have run out of wine, that is when we have a lack of strength to do good, or of true love and joy, because then we have only to offer our murky water, and she will ask her Son to change it into excellent wine.”
It is also good to see that in concluding the ninth day of the novena, which is entitled, “Mary — Queen of Heaven,” Msgr. Kolfhaus focuses on Blesseds Jacinta and Francisco of Fatima, and the importance of this Marian apparition for the Church. He makes the point that they were not beatified just because they had seen our Lady, but because they allowed themselves to be formed by the Blessed Virgin in her school of sanctity.
As the author says: “Fatima is the urgent appeal of heaven for everyone to generously answer the call to holiness and to follow the steep path that leads to life, step by step, day by day, in the hands of Mary.”
The book ends with the Consecration prayer of St. Louis, and a final section stressing the importance of the daily rosary.

An Excellent Read

A slight criticism is that the English translation contains some spelling errors and a few typos, and at times the style comes across as an overly literal translation from the German. But having said that, the freshness and urgency which the author manages to impart to the text mean that these points do not, in any significant way, detract from the very positive aspects of the book.
In sum, it is an excellent read, and bound to be of great spiritual benefit for anyone who reads it slowly and prayerfully.
And as the author says: “It has no other goal in mind than consecration to Our Lady according to St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort: namely the quickest and most secure way to sanctity.”

+    +    +

(Donal Anthony Foley is the author of a number of books on Marian Apparitions, and maintains a related website at www.theoto
kos.org.uk.)

Share Button

2016 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Serving LGBT Students in Catholic Schools

April 28, 2016, at 9:03 AM  |  By Dan Guernsey  |  Opinion How do Catholic schools best serve students who struggle with same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria (popularly called “transgendered”)? What should a school’s policies prescribe in order to prevent…Continue Reading

Pro-Life Group Lists Every Company Backing Planned Parenthood

A pro-life organization that has spent decades working to try to get corporations to stop giving financial donations to the Planned Parenthood abortion business has released a revised listing of companies backing the abortion giant. Life Decisions International has released…Continue Reading

Trump completes 5-state sweep; Clinton beats Sanders in most Super Tuesday III contests

Donald Trump completed a five-state sweep in Tuesday’s Republican presidential primaries, strengthening his shot at avoiding a contested convention – while Hillary Clinton scored convincing victories but was denied the same bragging rights of a primary sweep by a surprise…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood Caught Again

Kentucky is suing a new Planned Parenthood clinic after Governor Matt Bevin found out that they have illegally killed 23 unborn children. The clinic knowingly operated without a license for nearly two months. The request for a license was later…Continue Reading

Top Vatican cardinals aren’t commenting on pope’s exhortation

April 25, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Two of the Vatican’s most senior prelates, both known for taking a strong stand for the Church’s tradition at the Synod on the Family, are declining interviews on Pope Francis’ controversial apostolic exhortation. Vatican reporter…Continue Reading

Indiana diocese: Catholic teachers must uphold Church’s moral teachings

FORT WAYNE, Indiana, April 25, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Another Catholic bishop has taken steps to reinforce Catholic identity in the schools of his diocese. Fort Wayne-South Bend Bishop Kevin Rhoades promulgated “The Mission of Our Catholic Schools and the Importance…Continue Reading

Abby Johnson to Georgetown: Pray for Cecile Richards because no one is beyond conversion

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 21, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – No one is beyond conversion, former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson said at Georgetown University Wednesday, just hours after Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards delivered a lecture to a packed room at…Continue Reading

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Pro-life NFL star Matt Birk reveals real reason he skipped meeting with Obama

April 15, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — When football star Matt Birk decided to quietly decline an invitation to meet President Obama after winning the 2013 Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens, he said at the time that he was acting on…Continue Reading

Head of US Bishops’ news agency resigns, blames ‘far right blogosphere’

WASHINGTON, D.C. April 14, 2016 (LifeSiteNews)—The editor-in-chief and director of the U.S. bishops’ official news service resigned Wednesday at the request of the U.S. Bishops’ Conference general secretary. Tony Spence, who had worked for Catholic News Service since 2004, had…Continue Reading

Scandal: More ‘Drag Shows’ at Catholic Colleges

Annual drag shows — where individuals dress up and perform as the opposite sex — have become a consistent presence on several Catholic college campuses, punctuating the spring semester with scandal and disregard for Church teaching on human sexuality. Despite…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood: Ted Cruz is ‘the biggest threat we face’

April 14, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Ted Cruz’s pro-life views make him the “biggest threat” Planned Parenthood faces, the abortion giant said in a fundraising email last week. Citing the Texas senator and presidential candidate’s opposition to abortion in cases of…Continue Reading

Details Released for Planned Parenthood Event at Georgetown

March 7, 2016, at 8:12 PM  |  By Adam Cassandra In a statement sent to The Cardinal Newman Society Monday night, the Archdiocese of Washington responded to the controversy surrounding the invite of Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) President…Continue Reading

Newsmax

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Commentary

This Weeks Comments And Letters . . .  

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope’s Morning Homily: No to Double Lives!

pope(picture)

You are in communion with God, walk in the light. Do works of light, don’t say one thing and do another •April 29, 2016•ZENIT Staff• Pope Francis today exhorted Christians to avoid the “double life” of saying one thing and doing another. This was a main message of his homily this morning in the Casa Santa Marta, reported Vatican Radio. “If you say you are in communion with the Lord, then walk in the light.…Continue Reading

Top Catholic Philosopher: Amoris Laetitia Will “Split the Church”

Today, 28 April, an important exclusive interview with a well-known Catholic philosopher has been published in Germany. The important statements of Professor Robert Spaemann might well indicate that the wind is turning now against the “Francis Revolution”. Spaemann – who is a personal friend of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI – says about Amoris Laetitia that there are some ways of interpreting the document against the continuous teaching of the Church. He then continues: However, the article…Continue Reading

Christians in Crisis: Report Details Dire Situation in Iraq and Syria

ZENIT.ORG People of all religions will miss Christians’ contribution to education, healthcare •April 28, 2016•Fr. John Flynn• With no end in sight to the fighting in Iraq and Syria the remaining Christian population continues to experience very difficult conditions. A recent report, “Salt of the Earth: Impact and Significance of the Christian Presence in Syria and Iraq during the Current Crisis,” details the significant contributions Christians have made to the region and what it stands…Continue Reading

Pope: Do We Know the Other Lesson From the Parable of the Good Samaritan?

Zenit.org At General Audience, Says There’s More to Learn Than ‘Who Is My Neighbor?’ •April 27, 2016•Kathleen Naab• We know the parable of the Good Samaritan is a lesson to teach us that we must love our neighbor, and that there’s no one in the category of non-neighbor, but beyond that, Pope Francis asked today, have we also learned the parable’s lesson that God treats us with the compassion of the Samaritan? “In the gestures…Continue Reading

Over 750,000 pledge to boycott Target for giving men access to women’s bathrooms

target

April 26, 2016 (LifeSiteNews)—Over 750,000 people have pledged to boycott Target over the company’s new policy allowing men to use women’s bathrooms. The American Family Association, which launched the petition, says the fact that it’s generated such a large response in only five days shows how outraged Americans are. “American families are concerned about their wives and daughters being harmed by predators or voyeurs who will now have more freedom to enter women’s bathrooms,” AFA…Continue Reading

Restoring The Sacred . . . On Defending Doctrinal Truth Without Compromise

By JAMES MONTI Several years ago I had the curious misfortune of having to listen to several homilies regarding St. John the Baptist in which this great Forerunner of the Christ was cast as somewhat of a villain. The homilist claimed that John was being too judgmental in condemning Herod for his adultery and incest,…Continue Reading

Luther 1517-2017… Five Hundred Years Of Heresy And Doctrinal Confusion

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 7 (Editor’s Note: This is the sixth installment in a series by Wanderer contributor Raymond de Souza on Henry VIII’s book defending the seven sacraments against Martin Luther. De Souza edited this updated version of Henry’s work, which is presented to readers in this series. (This series will appear…Continue Reading

If God Is Dead…

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN In a recent column Dennis Prager made an acute observation. “The vast majority of leading conservative writers . . . have a secular outlook on life. . . . They are unaware of the disaster that godlessness in the West has led to.” These secular conservatives may think that “America can…Continue Reading

Being Conscientious About Conscience

By DONALD DeMARCO My earliest recollection of an explanation of conscience was when I was a young lad sitting in a movie theater and being enthralled by Walt Disney’s 1940 classic, Pinocchio. The newly carved puppet had been brought to life by the Blue Fairy. But he was still a puppet and had not been…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “How To Fight Dissent”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of the book Call to Action or Call to Apostasy, consisting of a detailed description of the current forms of dissent and how to fight them, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) +…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

An Apologetics Course… The Inquisition: Answering Objections

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 52 First objection: The Inquisition was intolerant! Reply: Before we dissect the Inquisition, we first have to define the terms we use, to ensure that we share the same meaning. What is “tolerance”? In today’s liberal parlance, it means something like accepting other opinions, views, and preferences, so that we are not seen to…Continue Reading

The Liturgy — Work Of The Holy Trinity

By DON FIER Part 4 The cooperation between the Holy Spirit and the Church that is at work in the liturgy is so close that the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) treats the two together. As stated in the section’s opening paragraph, when the Advocate “encounters in us the response of faith…the liturgy becomes the common work of the…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: Regarding the question of whether Jesus after the Resurrection appeared first to His Mother, which is not mentioned in the Gospels, or to Mary Magdalene, which is mentioned, F.A. of Massachusetts called our attention to the following comments by St. John Paul II in an audience on May 21, 1997: “How could the Blessed Virgin, present in the…Continue Reading

Faith And Love

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Seventh Sunday Of Easter (YR C) Readings: Acts 7:55-60 Rev. 22:12-14, 16-17, 20 John 17:20-26 In the Gospel reading today we hear a portion of the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus in which He prays not only for His apostles, but also for those who will believe because of their word. What a wonderful thing to…Continue Reading

Five Remedies For Sorrow From St. Thomas Aquinas

By MSGR. CHARLES POPE (Editor’s Note: Msgr. Charles Pope is the pastor of Holy Comforter-St. Cyprian, Washington, D.C. Monsignor kindly gave The Wanderer permission to reprint this essay from his blog. All rights reserved.) + + + Some of you who follow me on Facebook know that I just lost a beloved pet, Daniel, our rectory cat. Losing a pet…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Hugh The Great

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the 11th century, over 150 years before St. Francis of Assisi received the order from our Lord to “repair my house, which as you see is falling into ruin,” the secular rulers sought to control the appointment of bishops, abbots, and even the Pope. During this period of simony and conflict, St. Hugh the Great entered…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Blessed Maria Gabriella Of Unity

By CAROLE BRESLIN Just before Italy formally entered World War I in April 1915, a poor farmer and his wife welcomed a little girl into the peaceful land of Sardinia, an island about 150 miles west of Italy. Maria Sagheddu was born on March 17, 1914, the fifth of eight children. During the war that lasted until 1918, over 1,800,000…Continue Reading

COMPLETE 3 PART Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Insights On The State Of The Church In The Aftermath Of The Ordinary Synod On The Family

Cburke3

By DON FIER Part 1 (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, recently traveled from Rome to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., a magnificent place of worship which he founded and dedicated. (His Eminence graciously granted an extensive interview to The Wanderer during which he…Continue Reading