From a homily by Saint Bernard of Clairvaux:
We will dwell a while on this name, which is, rightly interpreted, “Star of the Sea,” and is therefore admirably appropriate to the Virgin Mother. Fitly is she compared to a star, which, in giving forth its light, suffers no waning, since she brought forth her Son without stain to her virginity. As the ray of the star lessens not its brightness, so the Son of Mary detracted in no way from her integrity. She is therefore that glorious star which arose from Jacob, and which cast its radiance over the whole world—the star whose splendour rejoices heaven, terrifies hell, and sheds its mild and beneficent influence on the poor exiles of earth. She is truly the Star which, being placed over this world’s tempestuous sea, shines forth by the lustre of her merits and example.
O you who find yourself tossed about by the storms of life, turn not your eyes from the brightness of this Star, if you would not be overwhelmed by its boisterous waves. If the winds of temptations rise, if you fall among the rocks of tribulations, look up at the Star, call on Mary. If anger, covetousness, or other passions beat on the vessel of your soul, look up to Mary. If you begin to sink in the gulf of melancholy and despair, think on Mary. In dangers, in distress, in perplexities, think on Mary, call on Mary.
Let her not depart from your lips, let her not depart from your heart, and, that you may win the suffrage of her prayers, never depart from the example of her life. Following her, you will never go astray; when you implore her aid, you will never yield to despair; thinking on her, you will not err; under her patronage you will never wander; beneath her protection you will not fear; she being your guide, you will not weary; if she be your propitious Star, you will arrive safely in the port, and experience for yourself the truth of the words, “And the virgin’s name was Mary.” (Luke 1:27)
“The Militia of the Immaculata and Our Time” by Saint Maximilian Kolbe:
“The heart of man is restless until it rests in Thee, O God,” asserted St. Augustine many centuries ago. With no exaggeration, the years that we are living may be called restless. And the reason for that is not at all different. Communist atheism seems to be raging on always more rowdily and does everything in order to sow, wherever it can, its reactionary prejudices. At its origin, we may easily locate that criminal mafia called Freemasonry. The hand that maneuvers all this toward a clear and specific goal, a selfish goal, is “international Zionism,” as several strands of research indicate with ever increasing evidence.
That does not mean that there are no honest people even among the Jews; or that even among subscribed atheists there are only foolish people; or that among the supporters of the inane fashion of the fist raised against one’s neighbor or against the Creator there are solely careerists with nothing but a feeling of protest in the depths of their souls. In this regard, I am reminded of a fact that occurred a few years ago. An agitator was telling me about his boldness as an unbeliever when he made pronouncements during the rallies; in the end, however, he added: “Yet I did not think that way.”
In short, the real villains, the ill-intentioned who sin with full knowledge, are relatively few. The Savior Himself forgave before the Heavenly Father even those who were crucifying Him, because—just as Jesus said—they did not know what they were doing [cf. Luke 23:34].
These poor people, therefore, need light, a great deal of supernatural light, of supernatural energy. They are unhappy, discontented, because they take as their ultimate goal what is only a means and therefore, after reaching the happiness to which they aspire, cannot find what they were looking for. And they continue to search with a dejected heart, with bitterness in their souls.
How can we fail to reach out to them? How can we not help them placate their hearts, lift their minds above all that passes toward the one ultimate purpose—God? Love for one’s neighbor pushes those souls who have already found the true ideal of life not to forget their brothers and sisters around them.
One of the many associations that practice this love of one’s neighbor is the Militia of the Immaculata. It is called “of the Immaculata” because its members have given themselves without restrictions to the Most Blessed Virgin Mary Immaculate, that she herself may work in them and through them and, through them, shower other souls with the graces of supernatural light, strength, and happiness. Moreover, it is called “Militia” because it cannot afford to rest, but rather intends to conquer hearts for the Immaculata by way of love, and through her, for the Divine Heart of Jesus and, ultimately, for the Heavenly Father.
Are you already a member of the hosts of this Militia? Would you like to give a helping hand to your neighbors?
Offer yourself up to the Immaculta as well! Let her work through you and you shall disseminate much happiness on earth even during this our time. To many a restless soul, you will give peace and serenity in God.