More and more people think the world will be different after the coronavirus. The virus changed and still shakes all old routines. It disorients souls, feeds tormenting questions, and even affects our faith!
I trust we all learn from this virus the new and only focus: God and my soul! Everything else is trivial and transient. Even if the disease temporarily takes the sacraments away from us, it cannot take away our God. He is our loving Father; we are His sons. Jesus died for us and rose from the dead; we are His friends. He gave us his mother; we are her children. External things and contacts are all details from this viewpoint. Our hope in God should not suffer.
On the contrary! Where everything else falls and crumbles, our faith should grow more intimate. Where we experience trials, the Faith becomes real on a personal level, and charity excels.
Together we want to undertake something special, to change this time of containment into a spiritual remedy. Let us ensure that the health crisis that menaces our bodies develops into a triumph of faith, hope, and charity that refines and vivifies our souls, internalizing what is now still too superficial.
So we turn again to the Rosary! For 16 weeks, we will give our love to Our Lady: from the Sunday of the Good Shepherd until August 15th, the feast of her Assumption. Every day let us immerse ourselves into the mysteries of the lives of Our Lord and Our Lady, to get close to Our Lady to learn from her the genuine love of Christ.
We take her as our guide, the Star of the Sea! We will count our rosaries. But what matters more than numbers is that we advance in the intimacy of Jesus and Mary with every Hail Mary, every decade, and every Rosary.
At the end of the 16 weeks, we wish to consecrate ourselves to Our Lady. This consecration should be the affirmation of our conversion, prompted by the coronavirus, begun with a resolute will, guided by Our Lady. Observe the example of St. Bernard:
Mary is that bright star of Jacob, whose ray enlightens the entire world, whose splendor shines conspicuously in heaven and penetrates hell. It pervades the earth and warms - not the body but the soul, banishing vice and maturing virtue. For she is that bright and splendid star, elevated above this vast and spacious sea, who glitters by her merits and enlightens by her example. If you find yourself tossed about by storms and tempests in the current of this world, turn not away your eyes from the brightness of this star unless you wish to be overwhelmed by its waves.
In dangers, in difficulties, and doubts; think on Mary and invoke her. Let her name never depart from your mouth or heart; and that you may obtain the benefit of her intercession, forget not to imitate the example of her life. In following her, you cannot go astray; in appealing to her, you cannot despair; and in thinking on her, you cannot wander. While she supports you, you cannot fall; while she protects you, you cannot fear; while she guides you, you cannot feel fatigue; and if she is propitious, you will arrive in safety.
You will receive a booklet for this crusade, with spiritual instructions and tally sheets. Every week we will offer an article for your inspiration. On August 15th, I will say the Mass of Our Lady and offer to Our Mother all our pleas and efforts as a modest contribution of her grateful children.
From past crusades, I recognize how generous you are! This renewed effort will be a marvelous grace for each of us and a mighty instrument in Our Lady’s hands to bring about the victory of her Immaculate Heart.
Fr. Jürgen Wegner