‘Before yielding to a natural and impetuous desire to learn this truth, kneel down and say devoutly the Ave Maris Stella and the Veni Creator Spiritus to ask of God the grace to understand and appreciate this divine mystery.’
‘Be sure,’ says Père Lhoumeau, ‘not to look upon this admonition as to prayer, as a mere commonplace recommendation of no consequence. If there are many who are not admitted to the ‘secret’ of this devotion, it is because they forget that in order to enter into this Garden Enclosed, Mary, it is necessary to implore the help of the Holy Ghost, Who ‘searcheth all things, yea the deep things of God.’
It is the same urgent invitation which de Montfort gives us in his Tree of Life: ‘You must not lean on your own skill or on your natural talents, on your good name or on the protection of men, you must have recourse to Mary and rely solely on her aid.’
It is also the subject of the ardent prayer which he addresses to the Holy Ghost at the end of his Prayer to Jesus. ‘O Holy Ghost, give me the grace to plant, water and cultivate in my soul this sweet Mary….Give me a great devotion and make me seek for Mary.’ The beginning will be made by studying Montfort’s Secret.
‘Owing to the little time I have for writing,’ he says, and you for reading, I will say everything as briefly as possible.’
(To be continued.)