The Heart of Jesus is most wounded by the indifference of people toward His Presence with us in the Holy Eucharist. He thirsts to be loved in the Most Blessed Sacrament, because we become like that which we love–and He longs for us to be one with Him. He calls us as members of Children of Mary to tell His people that He loves them and is with them. We proclaim this message first and foremost by our reverent participation in Holy Mass and loving and adoring Him in the Eucharist, which brings much grace to us and to the world. We proclaim it by faithfully fulfilling our duties in our state in life and by living lives of virtue and charity towards all people. We proclaim it by spreading the truths of the Faith.
The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries will seek their own personal sanctification – transforming union with God – out of love for God so that we can satiate Jesus’ thirst to be loved, and out of love for neighbor so we can share more fully in the work of redemption by being one with Jesus, as He sits at the right hand of the Father, interceding for His people. They seek holiness in order to please Our Lord, to have the mind of Christ, to join our prayers with His, and to move the Heart of God as we are “pleading for humanity and preparing the world for the second coming of God.” (Words of Our Lady to St. Faustina: “Your life must be like Mine, quiet and hidden, in unceasing union with God, pleading for humanity and preparing the world for the second coming of God.”
“Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:29)
The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries share in the work of redemption– gaining grace for all souls everywhere–by first consecrating ourselves to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to Whom we offer everything we think, say, and do so that She may take the offering, purify it, and present it to the Father as a spotless offering of love.
“Pure in heart refers to those who have attuned their intellects and wills to the demands of God’s holiness, chiefly in three areas: charity, chastity or sexual rectitude, love of truth, and orthodoxy of faith. There is a connection between purity of heart, of body, and of faith: The faithful must believe the articles of the Creed ‘so that by believing they may obey God, by obeying may live well, by living well may purify their hearts, and with pure hearts may understand what they believe.'”
St. Augustine (CCC2518)
The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries of Children of Mary love wholeheartedly Our Lord Jesus Christ and, for love of Him, the Church He founded – the Holy Catholic Church; and we embrace all that Holy Mother Church professes and teaches. This obedience to Holy Mother Church will aid us in maintaining clarity of mind by thinking with the Church and, through prayer, growing in wisdom and virtue.
Prayer for Priests
Priests are chosen by God to be His representatives to continually offer His sacrifice on the Cross to the Father, bring spiritual life to His people, restore it when lost, and strengthen the faithful through the Sacraments. Yet, priests are men taken from among men and ordained for men; they are in the world but not of the world; they are called to holiness while ministering to the sinful, hearing and absolving the sins of others while battling the attempts of the world and the evil one to lead them into sin. They give up natural fatherhood in order to give undivided attention to their spiritual children. In return, the faithful have a duty to pray for these men who serve them at such a great price of personal renunciation. It is up to the faithful to support them with much prayer and assist them on this journey fraught with snares, especially in this day when sin permeates the culture and is promoted as normal and even good. When we hear of the fall of a priest, our reaction must not be one of condemnation, but of sorrow and regret that we somehow failed him by lack of prayer and loving support. When we witness the goodness of the vast majority of priests, we must not take them for granted but pray much to Our Lord to keep them close to His Heart and protect them from satan’s attempts to destroy them. A holy priest is mighty in the work of saving souls. We beg God to sanctify our priests, so that the whole world will come to believe the truths of our holy Faith and the faithful will be lead to holiness through the example and preaching of Jesus’ representatives.
To Quench the Thirst of Jesus
Jesus’ cry of thirst from the Cross still echoes from all the Tabernacles of the world. He told St. Margaret Mary that He so ardently thirsts to be loved in the Most Blessed Sacrament that this thirst devours Him! As Children of Mary we vow our lives to quench this thirst of Jesus to be loved in the Most Blessed Sacrament. We do this through prayer and work – offering ourselves to the Father as martyrs of love – that the Eucharistic Reign of Jesus may extend to every heart and that He may be enthroned on every altar of the world and loved and adored by all. Concretely, this means we spend our lives in the white martyrdom of daily denying self and living to spread love for our Lord, either directly or in a more indirect manner of doing the small duties of everyday life with love for Jesus. And, if the opportunity were ever to present itself, we would, with the grace of God, undergo the red martyrdom of blood rather than deny the truth of Jesus present with us in the Most Holy Eucharist.
Children of Mary Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries work to help the faithful understand that the Eucharist is a Person, not a thing: the Living God Who thirsts for our love. Evangelization begins with each individual. From the very beginning of formation and throughout their lives, the Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries foster a deep prayer life – pondering this great mystery: God’s gift of Himself in the Eucharist to mankind.
“Lex orandi, lex credendi” – as we pray so we believe. The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries pray and promote prayers that explicitly express our Lord’s Real Presence in the Eucharist. For example:
- The prayer after Communion: “My Lord Jesus Christ, I love You above all things. I firmly believe that I receive in Communion, Your Body, Your Blood, Your Soul, and Your Divinity. I believe it because You have said it and I am ready to give my life to maintain this truth.”
- The prayers given to us through the Fatima apparitions: “O Most Holy Trinity, I adore You. My God, my God, I love You in the Most Blessed Sacrament.” “My God, I believe, I adore, I trust, and I love You. I ask pardon of You for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not trust, and do not love You.” “Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I offer You the Most Precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ present in all the Tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the sacrileges, outrages and indifference by which He Himself is offended. And through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of You the conversion of poor sinners.”
- The prayers contained in the Children of Mary Prayer Booklet
Actions speak louder than words. It is important that our actions manifest our belief in the Real Presence of our Lord in the Eucharist. If our actions do not reinforce our beliefs, there is a danger that our beliefs will be affected by the incongruity of our actions and may weaken faith in the Real Presence. To give Our Lord the honor that is due and as a witness to others, the Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries manifest their love for Him with such things as kneeling, prostration (as the Angel taught at Fatima), and receiving Communion on the tongue.
The Living God Incarnate was lifted high on the throne of the Cross, proclaiming His great love for us and overcoming sin and death. Now let us lift Him high in the monstrance and proclaim our love for Him. When we–the Church Militant–do this, the head of satan will be crushed and peace will come to earth. Our goal is to amass an army of adorers throughout the world so as to return love for Love and hasten the Eucharistic reign of Jesus which will bring peace on earth.
Reasons for Evangelization
“For it is only through Christ’s Catholic Church, which is ‘the all-embracing means of salvation,’ that they (separated brethren) can benefit fully from the means of salvation.
We believe that Our Lord entrusted all blessings of the New Covenant to the apostolic college alone, of which Peter is the head, in order to establish the one body of Christ on earth
to which all should be fully incorporated who belong in any way to the People of God.”
(Documents of the Vatican Council II, Decree on Ecumenism: UnitatisRedintegratio, #3)
- To proclaim the full Gospel in order to help bring to fulfillment the prayer of Jesus’ Heart that all Christians be united in the Holy Catholic Church that He entrusted to the college of the Twelve and their successors – “Father, that they may be one as We are one.”
- To promote love for Our Eucharistic Lord.
- To hasten the day that Jesus will reign in every heart, in every home, and be enthroned on every altar in the world.
- To help others understand that God became man for one purpose – that we who are created in His image and whom He loves may spend eternity in loving union with Him. For this purpose He redeemed us by shedding every drop of His Precious, Divine Blood on the excruciating altar of the Cross. For this purpose He established His Church on earth so that:
- we may be raised from our natural state to a supernatural divine state by first being born again of water and the Spirit through Holy Baptism;
- we may be more and more transformed into His image by partaking of the new paschal meal, eating the unblemished, Divine Lamb of God, and being divinized by means of the Sacred Food of the Holy Eucharist;
- we may be empowered to share in the work of Redemption by the gift of the Holy Spirit, poured out in abundance in the Sacrament of Confirmation;
- we would have recourse to hope and healing if, through serious sin, we should lose the gift of His Divine Life within us; if we repent, we can receive His forgiveness and be restored to supernatural life through the gift of the Sacrament of Reconciliation;
- His Church would continue throughout the centuries through the Holy Priesthood, giving the men He calls the authority and the power to act in His Name and share in His Priesthood, instructing them to go into the whole world to baptize, preach the Gospel, change bread and wine into His very self and to forgive sins. The Holy Spirit infallibly guided the evangelists to write the Sacred Scripture without error. In the same way, the Holy Spirit infallibly guides the successors of St. Peter, preserving them from proclaiming error in matters of faith and morals, to lead the Church throughout the centuries.
- To share in the work of anchoring the ark of the true Faith to the two pillars – the Holy Eucharist (Salvation of Souls) and to the Blessed Virgin Mary (Help of Christians). LIVING THE DREAM OF ST. JOHN BOSCO: THE TWO PILLARS
- To spread knowledge of and love for the True Faith with emphasis on the greatest gift God has given man–the Sacrament of Unity, the Holy Eucharist – the gift that unites us with one another and with God Himself!
Our love for Our Eucharistic Lord and our desire to quench His thirst to be loved in the Most Blessed Sacrament impels us to work to spread love for Him within the Church and beyond – to pray and work for Christian unity that “all may believe” and love and adore Him. This great gift of God Incarnate sacramentalized is the hub around which we work to build a culture of holiness, for our Eucharistic Lord is the source of holiness.
“Without the Eucharist the Church would simply cease to exist. In fact, it is the Eucharist which renders a human community a mystery of communion, capable of bringing God to the world and the world to God. The Holy Spirit, which transforms the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ, also transforms those who receive it with faith into limbs of Christ’s Body, thus the Church truly is a Sacrament of men’s unity, with God and with one another. In an increasingly individualistic culture such as that in which we live in western societies and which is tending to spread throughout the world, the Eucharist constitutes a kind of ‘antidote,’ working on the hearts and minds of believers and continually infusing them with the logic of communion, service and sharing, the logic of the Gospel.”
(Pope Benedict XVI, June 26, 2011, Angelus)
Bl. Mother Teresa of Calcutta: “The time you spend with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is the best time you will spend on earth. Each moment that you spend with Jesus will deepen your union with Him and make your soul everlastingly more glorious and beautiful in Heaven and will help bring about everlasting peace on earth.”
Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary
To more deeply love Jesus, it is necessary to love His Mother, the one He chose to help us on the journey to everlasting life. Every year, through prayer and reading, the Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries will prepare themselves for the consecration or re-consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. With the consecration we put our lives into the hands of Mother Mary–we belong to Her. Little by little, She will transform us more and more into the image of Her Son. She will lead us to perfection. When given the opportunity, we will instruct others about the benefits of being consecrated to Her Immaculate Heart and to make the consecration to Jesus through Mary.
Some Possible Apostolates for Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries
- Prayer: Offering up daily sacrifices and prayers for the Sisters, Co-Workers, Lay Missionaries and the Apostolate.
With the guidance and permission of the Sisters, Lay Missionaries may begin organizing, working in, and leading apostolates. Co-Workers may aid the Lay Missionaries or the Sisters in these apostolates but may not lead them on their own in the name of Children of Mary.
- Work among the Poor: Many churches in the inner city have been sold to Protestant denominations, leaving many of the poor without the benefit of knowing the great news that–in the Holy Eucharist–God is with them, that He loves them and longs for their love, and that He yearns to be united with them. We will share with them the great news that all of their sins can be forgiven and that they can come to live in God’s Divine life through the Sacrament of Baptism and/or Confession. They can know the joy of living in His grace. The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries will do whatever they can to bring as many as possible into the Sacred Presence of Our Eucharistic Lord, so that they can experience the peace that only He can give. We will share with them the full Gospel of the Holy Catholic Church, the one Church that can bring them the gift of transformation through the power of the sacraments.
- Work among the Elderly: The suffering and the elderly who find themselves abandoned and lonely have the potential of being a tremendous treasure house of grace for the Church and the world. We will go to them and share with them that their lives have perhaps more meaning and value now than ever before–if they accept their cross and offer it to the Father in union with Jesus’ suffering on the cross. Learning that the Lord is offering them the opportunity to share in the work of Redemption, these beloved of God find new meaning in life and grow in grace and peace and joy. At the same time, much grace is poured out upon the world; satan’s power is lessened; and souls are saved. The Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries will go to assisted living facilities and arrange, if possible, for regularly-scheduled times of Adoration, Mass, Confession, and instruction. We will encourage them to develop deep prayer lives and trustful surrender to God’s loving Divine Providence. We will encourage them to offer their suffering and their loneliness for the sanctification of priests and for the intention that all people come to love and adore Jesus in the Holy Eucharist and be faithful members of His Holy Catholic Church.
- Praying with the Dying: When given the opportunity, Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries will pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy with those who are dying.
- Help with Retreat Work and conferences: The Sisters may give retreat talks to individuals and/or groups. They will also give conference on the Faith for Catholics and/or non-Catholics, showing that the Catholic Faith is the faith of the early church as is verified in Scripture and quotes of the early Church Fathers. Talks will also focus on the indwelling of the Holy Trinity in the soul (living in the state of grace), the meaning of the Holy Mass, sin and the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the Holy Eucharist, and Our Blessed Mother. Co-Workers and Lay Missionaries can help with organization, scheduling, set up, registration, prayer, food, and other works needed.
- Distributing Eucharistic Materials: prayer cards, pamphlets and other written materials, as well as use of modern technology: computer websites, videos, CDs, DVDs made by Children of Mary.
- Forming ComeUnity Groups for: (Co-Workers may participate and aid in these groups)
- *Prayer and learning: Lay Missionaries can form prayer groups to learn the Faith and deepen their understanding of Catholic Doctrine.
- *Promoting Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary: Leading a group through 33 days of preparation followed by consecration.
- *Enthronement of the Sacred Heart in Homes: Promoting and helping people to enthrone the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in their homes and consecrate their families to Him.
- *Promoting the love for Love Movement and ‘Authentic Adoration’: Spreading love and reverence for our Eucharistic Lord.