January 2, 2017 – “…My most beloved Son illuminates lives, dispels darkness; and my motherly love which carries me to you is inexpressible, mysterious but real. I am expressing my feelings to you: love, understanding and motherly benevolence. Of you, my apostles, I am asking for your roses of prayer which need to be acts of love. To my motherly heart these are the dearest prayers. I offer these to my Son who was born for your sake. He looks at you and hears you…”
The love of Jesus and Mary are very real and very powerful. It is a pure love that chases away evil spirits, lights up our hearts and plants in us the seeds of joy and peace. Their love fills us with grace, guides us on the path to holiness, and guard against the snares of the enemy.
Both Jesus and Mary care deeply and solely for our salvation and well-being. And it is that love, although mysterious and inexpressible, continues to call humanity back. Pleading to leave the path of disobedience it is following and to return to the Father.
Looking at our world today it seems impossible at this point for it to turn back. We can only imagine the great sadness both the Sacred and Immaculate Heart must feel when looking at the many lost and suffering children of God.
Yet they don’t quit. And those of us who are committed to Jesus and Mary shouldn’t either. Which brings us to an important part of this message Our Lady shared with us.
“Of you, my apostles, I am asking for your roses of prayer which need to be acts of love. To my motherly heart these are the dearest prayers. I offer these to my Son who was born for your sake. He looks at you and hears you.”
She is asking for our roses of prayer, the Holy Rosary.
The Rosary is a powerful weapon against evil, and it brings the greatest joy and praise to both Jesus and Mary. It is a devotion Our Lady champions and is indeed very dear to her heart. When we offer our petitions to her through the Rosary she brings every one of them to her Son, and intercedes on our behalf. As Mediatrix and Co-redeemer, she obtains for us great graces and virtues we so dearly need; for Jesus loves His Mother so much He cannot say no to her.
St. Louis de Monfort was one of many saints who dedicated his life to the Holy Rosary, and even wrote extensively about its efficacy and power in his book Secret of the Rosary. Knowing there’s most definitely some great insights into the connection between the Rosary and roses in there, I went for my copy of his book.
Here’s what St. Louis de Montfort says:
A Mystical Rose Tree
For Devout Souls
Good and devout souls, who walk in the light of the Holy Spirit, I do not think you will mind my giving you this little mystical rose tree which comes straight from heaven and which is to be planted in the garden of your soul. It cannot possibly harm the sweet-smelling flowers of your contemplations; for it is a heavenly tree and its scent is very pleasant. It will not in the least interfere with your carefully planned flower-beds; for, being itself all pure and well-ordered, it inclines all to order and purity. If it is carefully watered and properly attended to every day, it will grow to such a marvelous height, and its branches will have such a wide span that, far from hindering your other devotions, it will maintain and perfect them. Of course, you understand what I mean, since you are spiritually minded; this mystical rose tree is Jesus and Mary in life, death and eternity.
Its green leaves are the Joyful Mysteries, the thorns the Sorrowful ones, and the flowers the Glorious Mysteries of Jesus and Mary. The buds are the childhood of Jesus and Mary, and the open blooms show us both of them in their sufferings, and the full-blown roses symbolize Jesus and Mary in their triumph and glory.
A rose delights us because of its beauty: so here we have Jesus and Mary in the Joyful Mysteries. Its thorns are sharp, and they prick, which makes us think of them in the Sorrowful Mysteries, and last of all, its perfume is so sweet that everyone loves it, and this fragrance symbolizes their Glorious Mysteries.
So please do not scorn this beautiful and heavenly tree, but plant it with your own hands in the garden of your soul, by making the resolution to say your Rosary every day. By saying it daily and by doing good works you will be tending your tree, watering it, hoeing the earth around it.
Eventually you will see that this little seed which I have given you, and which seems so very small now, will grow into a tree so great that the birds of Heaven, that is, predestinate and contemplative souls, will dwell in it and make their nests there. Its shade will shelter them from the scorching heat of the sun and its height will keep them safe from the wild beasts on the ground. And best of all, they will feed upon the tree’s fruit, which is none other than our adorable Jesus, to whom be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.
He also went on later to share this:
Crown of Roses
Ever since Blessed Alan de la Roche re-established this devotion the voice of the people, which is the voice of God, called it the Rosary. The word Rosary means “Crown of Roses,” that is to say that every time people say the Rosary devoutly they place a crown of one hundred and fifty-three red roses and sixteen white roses upon the heads of Jesus and Mary. Being heavenly flowers these roses will never fade or lose their exquisite beauty.
Our Lady has shown her thorough approval of the name Rosary; she has revealed to several people that each time they say a Hail Mary they are giving her a beautiful rose and that each complete Rosary makes her a crown of roses.
The well-known Jesuit, Brother Alphonsus Rodriguez, used to say his Rosary with such fervor that he often saw a red rose come out of his mouth at each Our Father and a white rose at each Hail Mary. The red and white roses were equal in beauty and fragrance, the only difference being in their color.
The chronicles of Saint Francis tell of a young friar who had the praiseworthy habit of saying the Crown of Our Lady (the Rosary) every day before dinner. One day for some reason or other he did not manage to say it. The refectory bell had already been rung when he asked the Superior to allow him to say it before coming to the table, and having obtained the permission he withdrew to his cell to pray.
After he had been gone a long time the Superior sent another Friar to fetch him, and he found him in his room bathed in heavenly light facing Our Lady who had two Angels with her. Beautiful roses kept issuing from his mouth at each Hail Mary; the Angels took them one by one, placing them on Our Lady’s head, and she smilingly accepted them.
Finally two other friars who had been sent to find out what happened to the first two saw the same lovely scene, and Our Lady did not go away until the whole Rosary has been said.
So the complete Rosary is a large crown of roses and the Rosary of five decades is a little wreath of flowers or a small crown of heavenly roses which we place on the heads of Jesus and Mary. The rose is the queen of flowers, and so the Rosary is the rose of all devotions and it is therefore the most important one.
Let us bring great joy to Jesus and Mary, crown them with sweet-smelling roses, and be active in our fight against evil with our daily rosaries! Let us all plant a Rose Tree in the garden of our hearts, so that Jesus and Mary will come and dwell there.