Rosary Crusade Clarion
Devotional bulletin of the Rosary Crusade in Canada

May 2002 Issue #17

The Crowning Of Mary In Heaven

...we believe that Mary was taken up into heaven and solemnly crowned by God with an everlasting crown of glory. Today we shall see that Mary was crowned by God: with a crown of justice; with a crown of glory; with a crown of power.

the Coronation

She was crowned by God with a crown of justice. Coronation, or the bestowal of a crown, is primarily intended to be an exercise of justice in recognition of merit. In this sense a student is publicly honoured on the successful completion of his course of studies. In this sense also a ruler honours a subject for heroism or victory over his country's enemies, or for some other great service to his country. And in this sense the supreme Remunerator, who has promised to reward even a cup of cold water given in His name, has crowned Mary in heaven. Surely, Mary had merited great reward! Mary, in all truth, could make her own the words of her divine Son: "I do always the things that please Him" (John 8:29). Her whole life was a repetition, not in words but in heart and act, of her submission made at the annunciation: "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word" (Luke 1: 38). And with each humble, loving repetition of this act, Mary advanced more and more in perfection and her merits increased beyond all bounds.

Mary's greatest merit, however, and her strongest claim to recognition before the Divine Justice, was the fact that she freely and out of pure love conceived and brought forth the divine Redeemer, thus giving Him to God and to the world for the salvation of the human race. In view of all this, what should we expect the Divine Justice to do for Mary in recognition of her merits? Should we not expect the supreme Remunerator to place upon Mary's head a crown in proportion to the greatness of her merits - a crown that would adequately compensate her for all her holy thoughts, her saintly desires, her beautiful words, her heroic actions, her terrible sufferings?

What a delightful scene! While David, her forefather, and Joseph, her virgin spouse, look on with rapturous joy, and the angels, the archangels, the virtues, the principalities, the powers, the dominations, the cherubim, and seraphim sing their glorious canticles, her divine Son, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, amidst the applause of the whole court of heaven, places the royal crown upon Mary's head.

This sublime coronation is a solemn manifestation of God's justice - a manifestation which should bring joy to the heart of every child of God and lover of Mary. For the triumph of Mary, who is not only the Mother of God but our Mother as well, teaches us that we have in heaven a just God, who will remember each one of us when the time comes to receive the reward that He has in store for those who love Him and serve Him here on earth. What does it matter, therefore, if difficulties and sorrows plague this short life of ours? The time of which the Apostle speaks will soon come for all of us: "There is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord the just Judge will render to me in that day" (2 Tim. 4: 8).

How foolish, then, are those who run after the things of this life! The world promises them riches, honours, pleasures, and they grovel, and labour, and sweat to attain them. Yet, they can never be sure of succeeding in their quest. The very moment that the world's promises seem nearest of attainment is the moment in which they are most elusive. And even did they succeed in attaining all the world's promises, what will it avail them when they stand before the judgment seat of God, if they have the misfortune to lose their souls? "For what doth it profit a man," says Christ, "if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his own soul? Or what exchange shall a man give for his soul?" (Matt. 16: 26).

Let us, for our part, labour for God and in God, that we may one day receive from Him a crown, which, like that of Mary, will shine on our brow forever and ever. "When the prince of pastors shall appear," says St. Peter, "you shall receive a never fading crown of glory" (1 Pet. 5:4).

Mary was crowned by God with a crown of glory. In crowning Mary God presented her to the whole court of heaven, adorned with all the gifts of nature and of grace, and invited all the citizens of heaven to place themselves around her throne while He proclaimed her the Queen of all the angels, patriarchs, prophets, apostles, martyrs, confessors, virgins, and of all the saints. Mary is the Queen of angels because she was endowed with such an abundance of grace as to surpass all of them, so that she is the most perfect being under God. Mary is the Queen of patriarchs because it was through her that they attained the object of their desires. It was the fruit of her most chaste womb that cured them of their maladies and freed them from the dismal surroundings in which they were waiting for the glory and happiness that the Redeemer was to bring to mankind. Mary is the Queen of prophets because she herself was a prophet in that she foreknew and foresaw future events, and because she played such a large part in the fulfilment of the prophecies of the others, especially by giving to the world Him whom they had foretold so long in advance. Mary is the Queen of apostles because it was chiefly through the help of her prayers and example that they prepared to receive the Holy Ghost, and through her counsel, guidance, and protection they were helped immeasurably in their difficult task of propagating the faith of Jesus Christ. Mary is the Queen of martyrs because what her divine Son suffered in His body she suffered in her heart and soul. Her sufferings were greater than those of all the martyrs, and it was through her that they received the grace and the strength to withstand the cruelty of their executioners and to remain steadfast in the faith in the midst of their torments. She is the Queen of confessors because in the perfection of her life she was the model of all the virtues which they professed and practised whether in the solitude of the desert or amidst the hum and bustle of the world. She is the Queen of virgins because she surpassed them all in virginal purity, and from her they have all received the grace and the incentive to live a holy life despite all difficulties. Mary is Queen of all the saints, because her powerful intercession made it possible for them to sanctify and save their souls in the face of the temptations and dangers of the world, and to merit the glory of heaven.

No mind can conceive or tongue express the greatness of Mary's glory. This glory reached its climax when she was crowned by God and presented as the Queen of heaven and of earth, of angels and of men. And what enhanced this glory more than all things else was the fact that she was not only the Queen of the universe but also the Mother of God. So great is this glory that the seraphim contemplate it without being able to comprehend it: when they gaze upon it they tremble, not with fear, but with love and reverence.

Of the glory of Jesus Christ St. John says: "And we saw His glory, the glory as it were of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1: 14). Now, the glory of Mary borders on that of her divine Son. To her may be applied the words of the Psalmist: "Glorious things are said of thee, O city of God" (Ps. 86: 3). Great things have been said of her in the past and will be said until the end of time, but enough can never be said of Mary. Heaven and earth may exhaust themselves in singing her praises, but no one can comprehend her except God who crowned her with glory.

Mary was crowned by God with a crown of power. When Solomon wished to honour his mother Bethsabee, he placed her on a throne beside his own, and assured her that he would grant her any request or favour that she might ask. This is precisely what Christ did in regard to His blessed Mother, only in a more perfect manner. It would be impossible to conceive much less express the power with which He invested her on the occasion of her coronation. The Holy Fathers of the Church teach that she was invested with power that exceeds all bounds, and that from that day she acquired such dominion that she approaches the throne of God not as one who asks but as one who demands, not as a handmaid but as a mistress.

The power which Christ has by His nature, Mary has by grace. Like Him she sits upon a throne, and as Queen she wields a sceptre, and out of love every knee should bow before her, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth (Phil. 2:10). The inhabitants of heaven honour Mary with a special homage; they continually sing her praises with hymns and canticles. After the service of God nothing gives them greater joy than to serve Mary. The Archangel Gabriel, who greeted her in God's name at Nazareth now remains before her in heaven, regarding it as a privilege to receive her commands and to put them into execution. The Archangel Michael, deputed by God as the guardian of the Church, and the one whose office it is to introduce the souls of the saved into heaven, even he considers himself privileged to receive an expression of Mary's wishes. Similarly, the Archangel Raphael and the seven spirits that stand before the throne of God are always ready to carry out her will in all things. All vie with one another in honouring her and in finding new ways of rendering her the homage of their service, their love, and their devotion.

While the angels in heaven bow down in love before Mary, the demons flee in terror and are made powerless at the sound of her voice, at the mention of her name, at the least sign from her. In the beginning God said: "I will put enmities between thee and the woman, and thy seed and her seed: she shall crush thy head, and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel" (Gen. 3:15). This enmity which God placed between Mary and the serpent has not ceased now that Mary is in heaven; it still remains and the conflict still continues. The devil still wages implacable war against her and, actuated by his intense hatred for her, he induces many to offend her, to abuse her, even to blaspheme her. If Mary tolerates these sins and the havoc which they work among the souls of men, it is not because she has lost her power over Satan, but because she enters into God's plan and follows His example of patience and long-suffering. Did she only wish, the whole host of demons would be forever confined to the infernal abyss.

The power which Mary has over the angels good and bad, extends also to us here on earth. In Holy Writ we read: "By me kings reign, and lawgivers decree just things; by me princes rule, and the mighty decree justice" (Prov. 8: 15,16). While these words were not spoken of Mary, the Fathers and Holy Church in her liturgy do not hesitate to place them on her lips. Hence we have reason to believe that God wishes her to take part with Him in the exercise of the power which He displays in all His divine dispositions. Thus assisting and co-operating with God in the government of the world, she is also the treasurer and dispenser of His graces. God's riches are Mary's riches: they are her heritage as Queen and Mother; they are her dowry as Spouse. She has access to them whenever she wishes, and she can do with them as she pleases. Therefore, St. Bernardine of Siena and St. Bernard are but the spokesmen of the whole Christian tradition when they say: "All that the heavenly Father, the Father of mercies, the God of all consolation, the God of love and goodness, resolves to give us, He gives us not otherwise than through the hands of Mary."

This, then, is the crown which God has placed on the head of His blessed Mother. This is the crown that now shines upon her brow in heaven and will shine forever and ever. What a joy and consolation it is for us to think that we have such a powerful Queen in heaven, who has access to the treasury of God's graces, and who is both able and willing to dispense them to us according to our needs. For she is not only the Mother of God but our Mother as well. Hence, let us go to her with confidence, fully convinced that there is no favour or grace that she will not grant us, if it is for the good of our immortal souls. With all our heart, let us say to her in the words of the Litany of Loreto: "Virgin Most Powerful, pray for us."

-from Discourses on Our Lady, by Fr. O'Rafferty.

Hail, holy Queen, mother of mercy, hail, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor
Banished children of Eve; to thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn, then, most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us; and after this our exile, show unto us the blessed
fruit of thy womb, Jesus: O clement,

O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.
Salve Regina, mater misericordiae,
vita dulcédo, et spes nostra, salve.
Ad te   clamámus, éxsules filii
Hevae; ad te suspiramus, gementes
et flentes in hac lacrimarum valle.
Eria ergo, Advocata nostra, illos
tuos misericordes oculos ad nos convérte; et Jesum, benedíctum
fructum ventris tui, nobis post hoc exsílium osténde: O clemens, O pia,

O dulcis Virgo Maria.



The month of May is specially dedicated to Mary. It is the month of flowers, and our Lady, like all beautiful ladies, loves to be surrounded by flowers. We could please our Lady greatly by bringing her roses, the beautiful spiritual roses gathered in the rosary.

The name "rosary" means a "rose garden." Our prayer of the rosary should be as time spent walking through a beautiful garden. This is the Queen's garden. It is immaculately kept. And it should be our interest to see and rejoice as each bud opens into a delicate Ave Maria. We can help these roses to bloom by our words, and give glory to our Queen by our loving hearts and minds. Be faithful then to the prayer of the Rosary, and encourage others to join in this Rosary Crusade.

United to you in devotion to the Blessed Virgin, I am,
Emanuel Herkel
Fr. E. Herkel