Anyone who loves Mary and tries to imitate her will surely grow in those great virtues so present in the beauty of her soul, thus learning to love Jesus as she does. For where hatred reigns, Mary teaches love. Where pride reigns, Mary teaches humility. Where impurity reigns, Mary teaches purity. Where disobedience reigns, Mary teaches obedience. These are the standards set by the Blessed Virgin, because she does not want us to settle for mediocrity. She has taken to heart the words of Jesus: “Be perfect just as your Heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48), and her maternal love desires to present each one of her children to Jesus at their particular judgment spotless and pure.
As this is true for the individual judgment, so it is true for the Last Judgment when her role as Mediatrix of mercy will shine forth for the final time. This helps to explain Pope Paul VI’s decision to proclaim Mary “Mother of the Church” at the end of the Second Vatican Council; for just as Mary is the Mother of the Redeemer, so she is also Mother of the redeemed. This act of Paul VI confirmed the confidence that the Council had in Mary’s ability to protect and intercede for the Church on its pilgrim way.
O most blessed and sweet Virgin Mary, Mother of God, filled with all tenderness, Daughter of the most high King, Lady of the Angels, Mother of all the faithful: on this day and all the days of my life, I entrust to your merciful heart my body and my soul, all my acts, thoughts, choices, desires, words, deeds, my entire life and death, so that, with your assistance, all may be ordered to the good according to the Will of your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Be to me, my most holy Lady, a comforter and an ally against the stratagems and traps of the ancient enemy and of all those who harbor ill intentions against me. From your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, request for me the grace to resist firmly the temptations of the world, the flesh, and the devil, and a constant resolve to sin no more and to persevere in your service and the service of your beloved Son.
My most holy Lady, I also beg you to obtain for me true obedience and true humility of heart so that I may recognize myself truly as a sinner—wretched and weak—and powerless, without the grace and help of my Creator and without your holy prayers, to do any kind of good work or even to resist the unrelenting assaults of evil. Procure for me also, O my most sweet Lady, perpetual purity of mind and body, so that with a pure heart and chaste body I may be strengthened to serve you and your beloved Son through the Dominican Order. From Him, obtain for me a spirit of poverty willingly accepted with patience and tranquility of mind, so that I will have the strength to sustain the labors of this Order and to work for my own salvation and that of my neighbors.
Obtain for me as well, O most sweet Lady, true charity with which from the depths of my heart I may love your most holy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, and, after Him, love you above all other things, and love my neighbor in God and because of God. Thereby may I rejoice in his goodness, sorrow over his evils, despise no one, never judge rashly, and never in my heart exalt myself over anyone.
Grant, O Queen of Heaven, that ever in my heart I may have fear and love alike for your most sweet Son; that I may give thanks for the many blessings bestowed upon me not for my merits but by His kindness; and that I may ever make a pure and sincere confession and do true penance for my sins, in order that I might deserve to obtain His mercy and grace.
I pray also that, at the end of my life, you, Mother without compare, Gate of Heaven, and Advocate of sinners, will not allow me, your unworthy servant, to stray from the holy Catholic faith, but that you will protect me with your great piety and mercy, defend me from evil spirits, and obtain for me, through the blessed and glorious Passion of your Son and through your own intercession, received in hope, the forgiveness of all my sins. When I die in your love and His love, may you direct me into the way of salvation and blessedness. Amen.
“Most Holy Virgin Mary, Help of Christians, how sweet it is to come to your feet imploring your perpetual help. If earthly mothers cease not to remember their children, how can you, the most loving of all mothers forget me? Grant then to me, I implore you, your perpetual help in all my necessities, in every sorrow, and especially in all my temptations. I ask for your unceasing help for all who are now suffering. Help the weak, cure the sick, convert sinners. Grant through your intercessions many vocations to the religious life. Obtain for us, O Mary, Help of Christians, that having invoked you on earth, we may love and eternally thank you in heaven.” -Saint John Bosco