Champions of the Rosary


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Pray For Us, O Holy Mother of God, That We May Be Made Worthy of the Promises of Christ

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By Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC (Aug 12, 2018)
Catholic tradition holds August as the month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. To begin this month, Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC, is sharing reflections and insights on the great prayer "Hail, Holy Queen." We conclude with the last line: "Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ."

Why does it all come back to the title "Mother of God"?

As the popes and saints have said, that's really her primary title, her greatest title. All the other ones flow from that. She has that special grace of being the only person who can fully be called the Theotokos, the Mother of God. That is the center of her person and her mission because, in a certain sense, motherhood speaks to who she is, while most of her other titles are what she does.

Can the Mother of God really be a model for women in all their roles, and not just for mothers?

Oh, for sure! Absolutely, because she is the model of the feminine mystery. She's a model for women, even if they're not mothers, because she's got that active receptivity where she is attentive, ponders, listens, and then responds in a way particular to women, with so much tenderness, affection, love, and concern. That is something that every woman can emulate and imitate, whether she's a mother or single, a consecrated virgin, in the home, or outside the home — wherever a woman finds herself, there are virtues of Our Lady to imitate.

Can we really be made worthy of the promises of Christ?


I hear you. Yes, on one level, who could ever "be made worthy of the promises of Christ" except for Our Lady herself? It's phrased in an ancient way. Our goal should be as much participation in God's plan for us and surrender to Christ as we can.

Why are Mary's prayers important to the process of sanctification?


Once again, it comes back to the whole theme of family. If we're going to be holy, it's really the family of God that we're wholly entering into. The mother is going to play an important role in that. She has a special place in God's family and in His kingdom. She makes everything beautiful. Everything that she touches, everything that she gazes upon with love and knowledge is elevated. Like she says in her Magnificat, "My soul magnifies the Lord" (see Lk 1:46); in a certain sense, she also magnifies our little contributions, so even though we put little pennies into the basket, they're actually worth more when they come through her.

What are the promises of Christ?

Take the Beatitudes. "Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God" (Mt 5:8). It's not phrased with the word "promise," but there are certain ways of living a virtuous life that lead to us being given something. That's a kind of promise. Or when He says, "I go to prepare a place for you" (Jn 14:2-3).

Why does the Hail, Holy Queen conclude the Rosary?

There's an ancient Cistercians tradition: At the end of their common prayer, they would pray the Salve Regina. When the mendicant orders were founded, they would do the same. When devotions like the Rosary came into existence, the Church began having the Salve Regina recited at the end of the Rosary, aiming to imitate the liturgy of the hours, the breviary. So, many people around the world pray the Hail, Holy Queen at the end of the Rosary; some pray it at the beginning.

What's the connection between the Hail, Holy Queen and the Mysteries of the Rosary?

The Rosary is a Christological prayer, going to Jesus through Mary. That closing prayer emphasizes once again that really strong Marian dimension, because without Mary, we wouldn't have any of those mysteries. In the mysteries, we meditate upon the life of our Lord and take a little pilgrimage in our minds and hearts alongside our Lord as He walked, lived, worked His miracles, died, and rose for us. So we don't just end it, but rather crescendo with a great prayer to Our Lady, wrapping up almost like the closing prayers at Mass.

Along those lines, any final words for this series?
Let us ask Our Lady to be with us and help us make the effort to be more faithful in praying the Rosary.

Share the Hail, Holy Queen with your family, friends, and community with our prayercard. To order, visit ShopMercy.org or call 1-800-462-7426.

Read the whole series at marian.org/hailholyqueen

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