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Wrapping up the Litany of Loreto

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This is the 19th and final article in a series on the Litany of Loreto.

By Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC

Last month, we finished with the main body of the prayer, which ended with the invocation "Our Lady of Peace, Pray for us." Today, we finish up this long prayer with the following lines:

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord.

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray. Grant, we beseech thee, O Lord God, that we, your servants, may enjoy perpetual health of mind and body; and by the intercession of the Blessed Mary, ever Virgin, may be delivered from present sorrow, and obtain eternal joy. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The main point of these final lines is to keep our prayer rooted ultimately in the triune God, because though we honor Our Lady, it's ultimately to Him that we direct our prayers.

Even within these final lines, though, we can glean a couple last things about Our Lady. First, after reciting the Lamb of God sequence, we invoke Mary as "Mother of God." This takes us all the way back to the second invocation of the Litany, which appears after "Holy Mary." This invocation — "Mother of God" — is repeated again here because this is her primary title. It's who Mary is. She's our mother and the mother of all mankind. In this series, many of the other titles we have addressed speak to what Mary does more so than who she is. Think about your own mother. What's the most important title you call her? I'm willing to bet it's "Mom." This reminds us that though there are as many as 52 titles of Our Lady, we should think of her primarily as our mother.

In the final prayer, we pray through the intercession of the "Blessed Virgin Mary, ever Virgin." Besides simply "Mary" and "Our Lady," "the Blessed Virgin Mary" is perhaps her most popular title. These words, all taken directly from Scripture, call to mind the central mystery of Mary's motherhood — that though she remained pure her entire life, through the power of Almighty God, she became the mother of everyone. In the end, that's one of the most important lessons Mary has to teach us: that with God's grace, the impossible is made possible.

As this long series concludes, I hope you have learned something that has brought you a little closer to Our Lady. Please go to marian.org/litany if you missed a week or would like to share this series with someone else.

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