Madonna with Child, and the Infant St John the Baptist - by BECCAFUMI, Domenico - from Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Rome
The Great Name of Mary, which was Given to the Divine Mother,
came from Heaven, and was Given her by a Divine Ordinance
Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae,
Vita dulcedo et spes nostra salve.
Ad te clamamus exsules filii evae.
Ad te suspiramus gementes et flentes,
in hac lacrimarum valle.
Eja ergo advocata nostra,
illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte.
Et Jesum benedictum fructum ventris tui
nobis post hoc exsilium ostende.
O clemens, O pia, O dulcis Virgo Maria.
Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy,
Hail our Life, our Sweetness and our Hope.
To you do we Cry, Poor Banished Children-of-Eve,
to you do we Send-up our Sighs,
Mourning and Weeping in this Valley-of-Tears.
Turn then, most Gracious Advocate
your Eyes-of-Mercy, toward us.
And after this, our Exile,
Show us the Fruit of your Womb, Jesus.
O Clement, O Loving, O Sweet Virgin Mary.
|Nota Bene: Bible verses quoted in this Book, are from the English Douay-Rheims Translation, Commissioned-by the Catholic Church.|
The Great Name-of Mary, which was Given-to the Divine Mother, did not Come-to her from her Parents, nor was it Given-to her by the Mind or Will of Man, as is the case with All other Names, that are Imposed-in this World; but it 'Came' from Heaven, and was 'Given' her by a Divine Ordinance. This is 'Attested' by Saint-Jerome (De Nat. M. V.), Saint-Epiphanius (Or. de Praes. Deip.), Saint-Antoninus (Hist. p. 1, t. 4, c. 6, #10), and others. "The Name of Mary, Came-from the Treasury-of the Divinity" - ("De thesauro Divinitatis, Mariae nomen evolvitur" S. de Annunt.), says Saint-Peter-Damian. Ah, yes, O Mary, it was from that Treasury, that thy High and Admirable Name came-forth; for the Most Blessed Trinity, says Richard-of-Saint-Laurence, 'Bestowed' on thee a Name above every other Name, after that of thy Son, and 'Ennobled' it with such Majesty and Power, that He Willed that All Heaven, Earth, and Hell, on only 'Hearing' it, should Fall-down and Venerate it; but I will Give the Author's own Words: "The Whole Trinity, O Mary, Gave thee a Name after that of thy Son, Above every other Name, that in thy Name, every Knee should Bow, of things in Heaven, on Earth, and under the Earth" - ("Dedit tibi, Maria, tota Trinitas nomen quod est super omne nomen, post nomen Filii sui, ut in nominee ejus omne genu flectatur coelestium, terrestrium, et infernorum" De Laud. B. M. l. 1, c. 2). But amongst the other Privileges of the Name-of Mary, and which were Given-to it by God, we will now 'Examine' that of the Peculiar Sweetness 'Found' in it, by the Servants of this most-Holy Lady, during Life, and at Death.
And in the First (1st) Place, Speaking-of the Course of our Life, the Holy-Anchorite-Honorius used to 'Say', that "this Name of Mary is filled with every Sweetness and Divine Savor" - ("Hoc nomen Mariae plenum est omni dulcedine suavitate divina" Ap. Lyr. Tris. Mar l. 2, m. 13); so-much-so, that the Glorious Saint-Anthony-of-Padua 'Found' the same Sweetness in the Name-of Mary, that Saint-Bernard 'Found' in that of Jesus. "Name of Jesus!" 'Exclaimed' the One. "O Name of Mary!" 'Replied' the Other; "Joy in the Heart, Honey in the Mouth, Melody to the Ear of her Devout Clients" - ("Jubilus in corde, mel in ore, melos in aure" Dom. 3 Quadr. s. 2). It is Narrated-in the Life of the Venerable-Father-Juvenal-Ancina, Bishop-of-Saluzzo, that in 'Pronouncing' the Name-of Mary, he 'Tasted' so-Great and Sensible a Sweetness, that, after doing so, he 'Licked' his Lips. We Read also that a Lady at Cologne, told the Bishop-Massilius, that as-often-as she 'Uttered' the Name of Mary, she 'Experienced' a Taste far-sweeter-than Honey. The Bishop 'Imitated' her, and 'Experienced' the same thing, (Casarius, Dial. l. 7, c. 50).
We Gather-from the Sacred Canticles, that on the Assumption-of our Blessed Lady, the Angels 'Asked' her Name, Three (3) Times:
"And why", says Richard-of-Saint-Laurence, "do the Angels so-often Ask the Name of their Queen?" He answers, "That it was so-Sweet, even to the Angels to Hear it Pronounced, that they Desired to Hear that Sweet Name, in Reply" - ("Forsitan quia dulce nomen sibi desiderant responderi" De Laud. V. M. l. 1, c. 2).
But here, I do not Intend-to speak-of that Sensible Sweetness, for it is not 'Granted' to All; I Speak-of that Salutary Sweetness of-Consolation, of-Love, of-Joy, of-Confidence, of-Strength, which the Name-of Mary ordinarily Brings-to those, who 'Pronounce' it with Devotion.
"There is no other Name, after that of the Son, in-Heaven or on-Earth,
The Abbot-Francone, Speaking-on this Subject, says, "there is no other Name, after that of the Son, in-Heaven or on-Earth, whence Pious Minds 'Derive' so much Grace, Hope, and Sweetness" - ("Neque enim, post Filii sui nomen, aliud nomen coelum aut terra nominat, unde tantum gratiae, tantum spei, tantum suavitatis, piae mentes concipiant"). After the Most Sacred-Name-of-Jesus, the Name-of Mary is so-Rich in every Good Thing, that on-Earth and in-Heaven, there is no other from which Devout Souls 'Receive' so-much Grace, Hope, and Sweetness. "For", he continues, "there is something so Admirable, Sweet, and Divine in this Name of Mary, that when it meets with Friendly Hearts, it Breathes into them an Odor of Delightful Sweetness". And he adds, in conclusion, "that the Wonder of this Great Name is, that if Heard-by the Lovers of Mary a Thousand Times, it is always Heard-again with Renewed Pleasure, for they always Experience the same Sweetness each time it is Pronounced" - ("Nomen namque Mariae, mirum quid, suave, ac divinum, in se continent, ut, cum sonuerit amicis cordibus, amicae suavitatis odorem spiret. Et mirum illud est de nominee Mariae, ut, millies auditum, simper audiatur quasi novem" De Grat. D. l. 6).
The Blessed-Henry-Suso (Dial. c. 16), also Speaking-of this Sweetness, says, "that when he 'Named' Mary, he felt himself so Excited-to Confidence, and Inflamed-with such Love and Joy with which he Pronounced the Beloved Name, he Desired that his Heart might Leave his Breast; for he Declared that this most Sweet Name, was like a Honeycomb, Dissolving-in the Inmost Recess of the Soul"; and then he would Exclaim: "O Most Sweet Name! O Mary, what must thou thyself be, since thy Name alone,is thus Amiable and Gracious!"
The Enamored Saint-Bernard, 'Raising' his Heart to his Good Mother, says with Tenderness, "O Great! O Pious! O thou who art Worthy-of all Praise! O most Holy Virgin Mary! Thy Name is so Sweet and Amiable, that it cannot be 'Pronounced' without 'Inflaming' those who do so, with Love towards thee and God. It only need Occur-to the Thought-of thy Lovers, to-Move them to-Love thee more, and to-Console them". "Thou canst not be 'Named', without Inflaming; thou canst not be Thought-of by those who Love thee, without 'Filling' their Minds with Joy" - ("O magna, O pia, O multum amabilis Mari! tu nec nominari potes, quin accendas, nec cogitari, quin recrees affectus diligentium te" Depr. Gl. V). "And if Riches 'Comfort' the Poor, because they 'Relieve' them in their Distress, O how much more does thy Name, O Mary", says Richard-of-Saint-Laurence, "'Comfort' us, than any Earthly Riches! It 'Comforts' us in the Anguishes of this Life". "Thy Name, O Mary, is far better than Riches, because it can better 'Relieve' Poverty" - ("Mariae nomen longe melius quam divitiae, quia melius angustiam relevant" De Laud. B. M. l. 1, c. 2).
In fine', "thy Name, O Mother of God, is filled with Divine Graces and Blessings" - ("Tuum, Dei genitrix, nomen divinis benedictionibus et gratis ex omni parte refertum" De Sim. et Anna), as Saint-Methodius says. So-much-so, that Saint-Bonaventure 'Declares', "that thy Name, O Mary, cannot be Pronounced without Bringing some Grace to him, who does so Devoutly" - ("Nomen tuum devote nominari non potest sine nominantis utilitate" Spec. B. V. lect. 9). The Blessed-Raymond-Jordano says, "that however Hardened and Diffident a Heart may be, the Name of this most Blessed Virgin has such Efficacy, that if it is only 'Pronounced', that Heart will be Wonderfully 'Softened'". I will, however, 'Give 'his own Words. "The Power of thy most Holy Name, O ever-Blessed Virgin Mary, is such that it 'Softens' the Hardness of the Human Heart, in a Wonderful Manner". He then 'Tells' us that it is she, who 'Leads' Sinners to the Hope-of Pardon and Grace: "By thee, does the Sinner Recover the Hope-of Forgiveness and Grace" - ("Tanta est virtus tui sacratissimi nominis, O simper benedicta Virgo Maria! quod mirabiliter emollit duritiam cordis humani; peccator per te respirat in spe veniae ei gratiae" Cont. de V. M. c. 5).
Thy most Sweet Name, O Mary, according-to Saint-Ambrose, "is a Precious Ointment, which Breathes-forth the Odor-of Divine Grace". The Saint then Prays-to the Divine Mother, 'Saying': "Let this Ointment-of-Salvation enter the Inmost Recesses of our Souls" - ("Unguentum, nomen tuum; descendat istud unguentum in animae praecordia. Sancta Maria, quod divina gratiae spiramenta redolet" Instit. Virg. c. 13): that is, 'Grant', O Lady, that we may often Remember-to 'Name' thee with Love and Confidence; for this Practice either 'Shows' the Possession-of Divine Grace, or else is a Pledge that we shall soon 'Recover' it. "And Truly it is so, O Mary; for the Remembrance-of thy Name, 'Comforts' the Afflicted, 'Recalls' those who have 'Erred' to the Way-of-Salvation, and 'Encourages' Sinners, that they may not 'Abandon' themselves to Despair". It is thus that Ludolph-of-Saxony 'Addresses' her ("O Mariae! Tui recordation nominis, moestos laetificat, errantes ad viam salutis revocat et peccatores, ne desperent, confortat" Vita Chr. p. 2, c. 86).
Father-Pelbart says, "that as Jesus Christ, by His Five (5) Wounds, Gave a Remedy for the Evils of the World, so also does Mary, by her most Holy Name, which is Composed-of Five (5) Letters (M-a-r-i-a), Daily bring Pardon to Sinners" - ("Sic Maria, suo sanctissimo nominee, quod quinque litteris constat, confert quotidie veniam peccatoribus" Stell. l. 6, p. 1, a. 2).
For this Reason, is the Holy Name of Mary 'Likened', in the Sacred Canticles, to Oil: "Thy Name is as Oil Poured-out" - ("Oleum effusum, nomen tuum" Off. B. V. resp. 6). On these words, Blessed-Alan 'Says' that the Glory of her Name is compared-to Oil Poured-out; because Oil 'Heals' the Sick, Sends-out a Sweet Odor, and 'Nourishes' Flames - ("Gloria nominis ejus oleo effuso comparator; oleum aegrotantem sanat, odorem parit, flammam nutrit" In Cant. i). Thus also does the Name-of Mary 'Heal' Sinners, 'Rejoice' Hearts, and 'Inflame' them with Divine Love. Hence, Richard-of-Saint-Laurence "Encourages Sinners to have Recourse-to this Great Name", because it alone will Suffice-to Cure them of all their Evils; and "there is no Disorder, however Malignant, that does not Immediately yield-to the Power-of the Name-of Mary" - ("Peccator es, ad Mariae nomen confugias. Ipsum solum sufficit ad medendum: nam pestis tam efficax nulla sic haeret, quae ad nomen Mariae non cedat continuo" De Laud. Virg. lib. i. cap. 2).
On-the-other-hand, Thomas-ΰ-Kempis 'Affirms' "that the Devils 'Fear' the Queen-of-Heaven to such a degree, that only on-Hearing her Great Name 'Pronounced', they Fly-from him who does-so, as-from a Burning Fire" - ("Expavescunt coeli Reginam spiritus maligni, et diffugiunt, audito nominee ejus, velut ab igne" Ad Nov. s. 23). The Blessed Virgin herself, 'Revealed' to Saint-Bridget "that there is not on-Earth a Sinner, however Devoid he may be, of the Love-of God, from-whom the Devil is not Obliged, Immediately to-Fly, if he Invokes her Holy Name, with a Determination to Repent" - ("Nullus tam frigidus ab amore Dei est, nisi sit damnatus, si invocaverit hoc nomen, hac intentione, ut nunquam reverti velit ad opus solitum, quod non discedat ab eo statim diabolus"). On another Occasion, she 'Repeated' the same thing to the Saint, saying, "that all the Devils Venerate and Fear her Name to such a Degree, that on-Hearing it, they Immediately Loosen the Claws with which they Hold the Soul Captive" - ("Omnes daemons verentur hoc nomen et timent; qui audientes hoc nomen, Maria, statim relinquunt animam de unguibus, quibus tenebant eam"). Our Blessed Lady also told Saint-Bridget, "that in the same Way, as the Rebel Angels fly-from Sinners who Invoke the Name-of-Mary, so also do the Good Angels 'Approach' nearer-to Just Souls, who Pronounce her Name with Devotion" - ("Angeli boni, audito hoc nominee, statim appropinquant magis justis" Rev. l. 1, c. 9).
Saint-Germanus 'Declares', "that as-Breathing is a Sign-of-Life, so also is the Frequent Pronunciation of the Name of Mary, a Sign either-of the Life-of Divine Grace, or that it will soon-Come; for this Powerful Name has in it, the Virtue of 'Obtaining' Help and Life, for him who 'Invokes' it Devoutly". 'Addressing' the Blessed Virgin, he says, "As Breathing is a Sign-of-Life in the Body, so is the frequent Repetition-of thy most Holy Name, O Virgin, by thy Servants, not only a Sign of-Life and of-Strength, but also it Procures and Conciliates both" - ("Quomodo corpus vitalis signum operationis habet respirationem, ita etiam sanctissimum nomen tuum, O Virgo! quod in ore servorum tuorum versatur assidue, vitae et auxilii non solum signum est, sed etiam ea procurat et conciliat" De Zona Deip).
Mary - A Fortified Tower
In fine', "This Admirable Name of our Sovereign Lady", says Richard-of-Saint-Laurence, "is like a Fortified Tower, in which, if a Sinner takes Refuge, he will be Delivered from Death; for it Defends and Saves even the most Abandoned" - ("Turris fortissimo, nomen Dominae: ad ipsam fugiet peccator et liberabitur; haec defendit quosilibet et quantumlibet peccatores"). But, it is a Tower-of-Strength, which not only 'Delivers' Sinners from Chastisement, but also 'Defends' the Just, from the Assaults-of-Hell. Thus the same Richard says, "that after the Name of Jesus, there is no other in which Men find so-Powerful Assistance and Salvation, as in the Great Name of Mary" - ("Non est in aliquot alio nominee tam potens adjutorium, nec est aliquod nomen datum hominibus, post dulce nomen Jesu, ex quo tanta salus refundatur hominibus" De Laud. B. M. l. 11). He says, "there is not such Powerful Help in any Name, nor is there any other Name given to Men, after that of Jesus, from which so much Salvation is Poured-forth upon Men, as from the Name of Mary". Moreover, it is Well Known, and is Daily Experienced by the Clients of Mary, that her Powerful Name 'Gives' the particular Strength necessary-to 'Overcome' Temptations against Purity. The same Author, in his Commentary-on the Words of Saint-Luke, "and the Virgin's Name was Mary" - ("Et nomen Virginis Maria" Luke 1:27), remarks that these Two (2) Words, Mary and Virgin, are 'Joined' together by the Evangelist, to 'Denote' that the Name of this most-Pure Virgin, should always be 'Coupled' with the Virtue-of-Chastity - ("Nomini Mariae virginitas et sanctitas inseparabiliter sunt adjuncta" Loco cit.). Hence Saint-Peter-Chrysologus says, "that the Name of Mary is an Indication of Chastity" - ("Nomen hoc, indicium castitatis" Serm. 146), meaning, that when we Doubt as to whether we have 'Consented' to Thoughts-against this Virtue, if we Remember having 'Invoked' the Name-of Mary, we have a Certain Proof, that we have not Sinned.
Let us, therefore, always take Advantage-of the Beautiful Advice 'Given' us by Saint-Bernard, in these words: "In-Dangers, in-Perplexities, in-Doubtful cases, Think-of Mary, Call-on Mary; let her not-Leave thy Lips; let her not Depart-from thy Heart" - ("In periculis, in angustiis, in rebus dubriis, Mariam cogita, Mariam invoca; non recedat ab ore, non recedat a corde" De Laud. V. M. hom. 2). In every Danger of 'Forfeiting' Divine Grace, we should 'Think' of Mary, and 'Invoke' her Name, together-with that of Jesus; for these Two (2) Names always go together. O, then, never let us Permit these Two (2) most Sweet Names, to 'Leave' our Hearts, or be off our Lips; for They will give us Strength not only not-to-Yield, but to 'Conquer' all our Temptations.
Consoling indeed are the Promises-of Help, made-by Jesus Christ to those who have Devotion to the Name-of-Mary; for One Day, in the Hearing-of Saint-Bridget, He 'Promised' His most Holy Mother, that He would 'Grant' Three(3) Special Graces, to those who 'Invoke' that Holy Name with Confidence:
And then Our Divine Savior 'Added': "For thy Words, O My Mother, are so Sweet and Agreeable to Me, that I cannot Deny what thou Askest" - ("Habitatores mundi indigent tribus: contritione pro peccatis, satisfactione, fortitudine ad faciendum bona. Quicumque invocaverit nomen tuum, et spem habet in te, cum proposito emendandi commissa, ista tria dabuntur ei, insuper et regnum coeleste. Tanta enim est mihi dulcedo in verbis tuis, ut non possim negare quae petis") Rev. l. 1, c. 50).
Saint-Ephrem goes so-far-as to Say, "that the Name of Mary is the Key-of the Gates-of-Heaven" - ("Nomen Mariae est reseratorium portae coeli" De Laud. Dei Gen.), in the hands-of those who Devoutly 'Invoke' it. And thus it is not without-Reason, that Saint-Bonaventure 'Says': "that Mary is the Salvation of All, who Call-upon her"; for he 'Addresses' her, saying: "O Salvation of All, who Invoke thee!" - ("O Salus te invocantium!") 'Meaning', that to 'Obtain' Eternal Salvation and 'Invoke' her Name, are Synonymous; and Richard-of-Saint-Laurence 'Affirms', "that the Devout Invocation of this Sweet and Holy Name, Leads-to the Acquisition-of Superabundant Graces in this Life, and a very High Degree of Glory, in the Next" - ("Devota invocation nominis ejus ducit ad virorem gratiae in praesenti, ad virorem gloriae in futuro" De Laud B. M. l. 1, c. 2). "If then, O Brethren", concludes Thomas-ΰ-Kempis, "you Desire Consolation in every Labor, have Recourse to Mary; Invoke the Name-of Mary, Honor Mary, Recommend yourselves to Mary, Rejoice with Mary, Weep with Mary, Pray with Mary, Walk with Mary, Seek Jesus with Mary; in fine', Desire to Live and Die with Jesus and Mary. By Acting thus, you will always Advance-in the Ways-of-God, for Mary will most-Willingly Pray-for you, and the Son will most-Certainly 'Grant' All that His Mother 'Asks'" - ("Si consolari in omni tribulatione quaeritis, accedite ad Mariam. Mariam invocate, Mariam honorate, Mariae vos commendate; cum Maria gaudete, cum Maria dolete, cum Maria orate, cum Maria ambulate, cum Maria Jesum quaerite, cum Maria et Jesu vivere et mori desiderate. Fratres, si ista exercetis, proficietis; Maria libenter pro vobis orabit, et Jesus libenter Matrem suam exaudiet" Ad Nov. s. 21).
Thus we see that the Most-Holy-Name-of-Mary, is Sweet indeed to her Clients during Life, on-account-of the very Great Graces that she 'Obtains' for them. But Sweeter still, will it be to them in Death, on-account-of the Tranquil and Holy End, that it will 'Insure' them.
Father-Sertorius-Caputo, of the Society-of-Jesus, 'Exhorted' all who 'Assist' the Dying, frequently to 'Pronounce' the Name-of-Mary; for this Name-of Life and Hope, when 'Repeated' at the Hour-of-Death, 'Suffices' to put the Devils to Flight, and to Comfort such Persons, in their Sufferings.
"The Invocation of the Sacred Names of Jesus and Mary", says Thomas-ΰ-Kempis, "is a Short Prayer which is as Sweet to the Mind, and as Powerful to Protect those who Use it against the Enemies of their Salvation, as it is easy to Remember" - ("Haec sancta oratio: 'Jesus et Maria,' brevis est ad legendum, facilis ad tenendum, dulcis ad cogitandum, fortis ad protegendum" Vall. Lil. c. 13).
"Blessed is the Man who Loves thy Name, O Mary" - ("Beatus vir qui diligit nomen tuum, Maria"), 'Exclaims' Saint-Bonaventure. "Yes, Truly Blessed is he, who Loves thy Sweet Name, O Mother of God! for", he continues, "thy Name is so Glorious and Admirable, that no one who Remembers it, has any Fears at the Hour-of-Death" - ("Gloriosum et admirabile est nomen tuum; qui illud retinent, non expavescent in puncto mortis" Psalt. B. V. ps. i. 110). Such is its Power, that none of those who 'Invoke' it at the Hour-of-Death, 'Fear' the Assaults of their Enemies.
Oh, that we may End our Lives as did the Capuchin Father, Fulgentius-of-Ascoli, who Expired 'Singing', "O Mary, O Mary, the most Beautiful of Creatures! Let us Depart together"; or according-to the Annals-of the Order, like Blessed-Henry-the-Cistercian, who 'Expired' in the very Moment that he was 'Pronouncing' the most Sweet Name-of Mary - ("Inter ipsam dulcissimi nominis articulationem!")
Let us then, O Devout Reader, 'Beg' God to 'Grant' us, that at-Death, the Name-of Mary, may be the Last Word on our Lips. This was the Prayer of Saint-Germanus: "May the Last Movement of my Tongue, be to Pronounce the Name of the Mother-of-God" - ("Dei Matris nomen sit mihi ultimus linguae loquentis motus" In Deip. Ann.) O Sweet, O Safe, is that Death which is 'Accompanied' and 'Protected' by so- Saving a Name; for God only 'Grants' the Grace of 'Invoking' it, to those whom He is about-to Save.
O my Sweet Lady and Mother, I Love thee much, and because I Love thee, I also Love thy Holy Name. I 'Purpose' and 'Hope', with thy Assistance, always to 'Invoke' it during-Life and at-Death. And to Conclude-with the Tender Prayer of Saint-Bonaventure: "I ask thee, O Mary, for the Glory of thy Name, to 'Come' and 'Meet' my Soul, when it is Departing from this World, and to Take it in thine Arms" - ("In exitu animae meae de hoc mundo, occurred illi, Domina, et suscipe eam"). "Disdain not, O Mary", the Saint continues, "to Come then, and Comfort me with thy Presence." Be thyself, my Soul's Ladder and Way to Heaven. Do thou thyself Obtain for it, the Grace of Forgiveness and Eternal Repose" - ("Consolare eam vultu sancto tuo; esto illi scala et iter ad paradisum Dei; impetra ei indulgentiam pacis, et sedem lucis"). He then concludes 'Saying', "O Mary, our Advocate, it is for thee to Defend thy Clients, and to Undertake their Cause, before the Tribunal-of Jesus Christ" - ("Sustine devotos ante tribunal Christi; suscipe causam eorum in minibus tuis" Psalt. B. V. ps. 113).
End of Chapter X
Other Titles of the Blessed Virgin Mary