true devotion to mary
Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort
Few men have contributed so much to spread Marian devotion as Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort. He was a popular and vigorous missionary from the west of France, who died at the age of 43 in 1716, exhausted by his sermons and his penances. His famous books such as Mary’s Secret or The Treaty of True Devotion, which became known a long time after his death, had a considerable influence. “It is also through Mary that we must approach God and unite ourselves perfectly and strictly to his Majesty, without fearing rejection”.

“Only God!” is one of Grignion’s key formulas. For him, everything comes from the Father and everything returns to the Father. Mary is at the heart of this and rightly so: “When someone has once found Mary, and through Mary, Jesus and through Jesus, God the Father, he has found all that is good…all of God’s grace and friendship, all truth against lies, all ease and victory against lies, all ease and victory against difficulties of salvation, all sweetness and all joy in the bitterness of life”.

The fact of serving Mary does not lessen the importance of the Cross but it presents it in a totally different way. “Since Mary is the mother of the living, she gives all her children pieces of the Tree of Life, which is Jesus’ cross.

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Above all the vision of Frank Duff concerning the priest and laity can only be understood in the context of evangelisation and the salvation of souls. Both priest and laity must be totally christocentric and the central focus of Christ is the salvation of souls.

Our Lord put it categorically more than once: 'I came to save sinners.' Evangelisation is simply cooperating in the work of redemption. It is facilitating a meeting between Christ and another person, bringing the fruits of redemption to others or again putting it very simply, it is helping others get into heaven.

This must be the overwhelming focus of any priest or layperson who would wish to be apostolic. Ultimately there is no evangelisation without focusing on the salvation of souls. Whatever the immediate goals, the ultimate goal of all evangelisation must be the gaining of eternal life.

The Code of Canon Law puts it very succinctly: For all activity of the Church 'the salvation of souls must always be the supreme law. '(Can.1752) This is the identity of interest between the priest and the lay apostle.
Rev. Fr. Bede McGregor, O.P., Concilium Spiritual Director