Welcome to the My Queen, My Mother Book Club! We’re reading My Queen, My Mother by Marge Steinhage Fenelon. Scroll to the bottom of this post for information on how to order our Book Club selection.
How blessed we are to live in a country that is consecrated to the Immaculate Conception. All throughout our great country, there is evidence of our devotion to Our Lady and her devotion to us. In my own backyard here in Emmitsburg, Maryland, the National Shrine Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes is on the very same mountain where St. Elizabeth Ann Seton worshipped. Now, author Marge Steinhage Fenelon has invited me on an “armchair pilgrimage” across America to visit other Marian shrines, to which I say, “Let’s go!”
It amazes me how much the Blessed Mother has been a part of our country’s foundation and growth.
From its very beginning, Our Lady has been showering her graces upon the United States of America. St. Augustine, the oldest city in North America, was founded on Mary’s birthday. I love that the chapel that the Spaniards first built was dedicated to Our Lady of La Leche. The Mother nurturing her Son appropriately watched over the founding of the New World. It is as if Our Lady herself nurtured our country to become the “city set on a hill” whose shining light inspired other countries to yearn for and attain their God-given freedoms (cf. Mt 5:14).
Our Lady continued to guide our fledgling country as it “grew in wisdom, and grace, and favor before God and man” (cf. Lk 2:52). She was there when our country expanded through the Louisiana Purchase with the Ursuline Sisters who lived and taught in New Orleans and had a great devotion to Our Lady of Prompt Succor. I love that during the War of 1812, at the Battle of New Orleans, what was lacking in American soldiers and munitions, the sisters made up for in prayers before the statue of Our Lady of Prompt Succor. When the Americans won the battle, which lasted all but twenty minutes, even the non-religious General Jackson had to give credit where credit was due, going to the convent himself to thank the sisters for the “divine interposition” they had prayed upon his troops. Our Lady has proven that she will help our country when we ask. Let us continue to pray, especially the Rosary, for our nation.
Our prayers, though, must be consistent. Like the Salish natives who had to travel 3,000 miles to ask the Jesuits to send missionaries to their tribe in present-day Montana four times, we cannot give up. Mary gives us hope.
It seems that as our country expanded, so too did devotion to our Lady. When Fr. DeSmet and two of his fellow Jesuit missionaries finally found the perfect place to start the mission in Montana, the day happened, once again, to be the birthday of Our Lady. Hence, the mission was named St. Mary’s. How almost incredible has been Mary’s presence throughout the history of our Nation!
From the beginning, Our Queen and Mother has guided and protected us. She takes just as much interest and concern in us personally as she does in us as a country. Like the story Marge tells of the young Salish boy named Paul, our Lady wants to help us clear our mind so that we can know and love Her Son better. Mary is always at our side, nurturing and encouraging us. We need only to turn to her in prayer and ask.
Questions for Discussion:
- Our Lady of La Leche is depicting preforming an ordinary “job” of motherhood, nourishing her child. What ordinary task will you preform today for the glory of God? All you have to do is offer it to Jesus through Mary with all your love.
- Our Lady of Prompt Succor is quick to help when we are in danger of being lost. On whose behalf can you intercede to Our Lady of Prompt Succor so that a beloved soul may be saved?
- Can you take 10 minutes, maybe even 30 or 60 minutes, out of your day today to reflect on what is good, true, and beautiful in your life?
Order My Queen, My Mother from Ave Maria Press and save 20% with coupon code MQMM. This offer expires 10/31/2019.
Copyright 2019 Kelly Guest