May is Mary’s month, a time when Catholics devote extra attention to the Blessed Mother. Rosaries, novenas, Masses and May crowning ceremonies are all part of the repertoire of celebrations.
Among her many titles, the Blessed Mother is well known as the Queen of Peace. In her apparitions to the children of Fatima in 1917, she implored them to pray the Rosary every day in her honor, “to obtain the peace of the world and the end of the war.”
More than 100 years later, we continue to invoke her name when praying for peace in this world. Pope Francis, in a recent visit to Rome’s Shrine of Our Lady of Divine Love, prayed the Rosary for peace, especially in war-torn Syria, and for strengthened peace following a meeting of North and South Korean leaders. The Holy Father invited pilgrims to continue their prayers throughout the month of May.
In a culture immersed with evil, the message of “thoughts and prayers” seems worn out. But we cannot lose sight that there is power in prayer. Not only does it facilitate a deeper relationship with our Lord, but it also gives us a chance to calm our thinking in difficult moments.
Our prayer also unites us with those who are suffering. It’s a way for us to show how even thousands of miles away, we take seriously the cross that others are bearing during times of war or other tragedies. In that sense, our prayers build up a global spiritual community.
Pope Francis has called Mary the “best of mothers,” who keeps a candle of hope burning in the darkness.
The Blessed Mother, he said, is an example of someone who “is not a woman who gets depressed when faced with life’s uncertainties, especially when nothing seems to be going right.” In her biggest moment of darkness, when her Son died on the cross, Mary remained standing, and didn’t run away.
We come to her as a consoling mother, entrusting our anxiousness and sorrows, and as Pope Francis said, to ask for “a future of serenity and harmony.”
Queen of Heaven, rejoice. Alleluia.
For He, whom thou wast worthy to bear. Alleluia.
Has risen as He said. Alleluia.
Pray for us to God. Alleluia.
V. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary. Alleluia.
R. Because the Lord is truly risen, Alleluia.
Let us pray
O God, Who by the Resurrection of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, hast been pleased to give joy to the whole world, grant we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may attain the joys of eternal life. Through the same Christ, our Lord. Amen.