Throughout history, there have been countless saints who have had a deep devotion to Our Lady. And in this month of May, we decided to take a look at three saints who had a particularly strong devotion to the Blessed Mother and learn from their lives how to rely on her powerful intercession.
-St. Maximilian Kolbe
From a young age, St. Maximilian Kolbe was devoted to Our Lady. She appeared to him in a dream when he was just ten years old, offering him a choice between a white crown of purity and a red crown of martyrdom. He chose both paths. Later, as a Franciscan priest, St. Maximilian created the Militia of the Immaculata, an organization dedicated to the conversion and consecration of souls to Mary Immaculate and the establishment of the reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He founded a monthly magazine to spread this message and planned a film studio, and the friars utilized the radio. However, St. Maximilian's deep love for Mary was not just external but also internal. He spent countless hours contemplating the mystery of Mary's life and love, which fueled his tireless efforts to bring others closer to Jesus through the Blessed Mother. Even in his death at Auschwitz on the eve of the Assumption of Our Lady, he remained devoted to her.
-St. Thérèse of Lisieux
St. Thérèse learned her devotion to Our Lady from her parents, Sts. Zelie and Louis Martin. After her mother passed away when she was only five years old, Thérèse turned to Our Lady to help fill the absence of an earthly mother. She often turned to the Blessed Mother for help with everything; from her zeal to save souls to writing her life story as instructed by her superiors to her vocation as a Carmelite sister, Thérèse learned to go to Mary and learn from her example. Thérèse not only resolved to live and work under Mary's guidance but also to emulate her example. She desired to follow in her Mother's footsteps daily, especially in learning to "remain little." Mary taught Thérèse that experiencing suffering out of love brings joy.
As a child, St. Josemaria was entrusted to Our Lady by his mother when he was at the point of death. His devotion to Our Lady and her many names became instrumental in his discovering the call to begin Opus Dei. His trust in Mary’s help was so that he told the members of Opus Dei, “We go to Jesus — and we 'return' to him — through Mary.” He also addressed her with the bold title omnipotencia suplicante: “Mother of God, you are omnipotent in your petition.” He traveled to Mexico in 1970 to do a novena of prayer at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe. He also prayed for the Church at numerous other Marian shrines in Europe and North and South America. He promoted the Shrine of Our Lady of Torreciudad near his birthplace in Spain. St. Josemaria knew that if he went to Our Lady with any petition, she would answer like a good mother.
Mary is a generous and kind mother, and her intercession for those saints devoted to her shows how much she loves her earthly children. May we all strive to follow in the footsteps of the saints and deepen our devotion to Our Lady. How are you growing closer to your Heavenly Mother this month?