The Immaculate Conception and Holy Communion.
Mary s Immaculate Conception was predicted in the terrestrial Paradise. The Blessed Virgin is that chosen woman whose heel crushed the infernal serpent. In creating Mary immaculate, God gained the greatest victory over the devil, and reestablished His empire in the world. As Master, He took possession of His own creation, and it was chiefly for His own glory that He preserved Mary from the original stain; for in all His works God seeks first the interests of His own glory.
Every creature was born stained and guilty. God was not full master of it. He could not entirely possess it, for Satan seized upon the soul at the moment of its creation. God created, but Satan took possession of His work. The glory of God was humiliated in His creatures, and when the Lord had banished Adam and Eve from the earthly Paradise, Satan triumphed over God, Satan had the victory.
But behold Mary. God had guarded her. He preserved her by a special privilege. She passed through the period of natural conception, as did all men since Adam. But God owed it to Himself to preserve her pure. Eve, the first mother, was stained; Mary, the true mother of the living, will be immaculate. God overshadowed her. She is His garden enclosed, His fountain sealed, of whose waters the King only shall drink. Satan will not dare approach Mary. She was born in the arms of God s love: Dominus possedit me in initio viarum suarum. She was a true daughter of God: Primogenita ante omnem creaturam. The Word should not blush for His Mother. As He gave her all that she possessed, God beheld His own honor and glory when He looked upon Mary. The Most Holy Trinity perfectly concurred in the Immaculate Conception of Mary. The glory of the Three Divine Persons demanded it. If Satan gets possession before God, then Satan is the conqueror. On what ever terms he may have been emancipated, he who was born in slavery always retains its mark.
Thus was the glory of God repaired in humanity. The image of God was remodeled and restored. God may without fear come down and take up His abode in Mary, for she is a tabernacle purer than the sun. Mary is by her purity God s heaven on earth. With her He will renew the world. Behold what the Immaculate Conception has given us: first of all, Jesus Christ. Mary in her Immaculate Conception was the aurora of that beautiful Sun of Justice and of all the saints, those brilliant stars in the firmament of the Church. All were formed by Mary, all come to us from that Paradise of the Lord. The Immaculate Conception is the germ of all the graces that we have received. Like the little cloud that Elias saw, Mary is of herself only a speck on the horizon; but she grows, she expands, and her divine influence pervades the whole world.
But for us, adorers, there is still something more in the mystery of the Immaculate Conception. If God thus preserved Mary, it was because He wished to dwell in her. He wished to descend into a holy dwelling-place pure and perfect. The Heavenly Father and the Holy Spirit purified Mary only to make of her a worthy tabernacle for the Divine Word. He had to create a new heaven for Him, one entirely pure. To receive Him into her bosom, Mary had to be immaculate. The Immaculate Conception is the remote preparation for Holy Communion. O with what happiness the Word contemplated that dwelling which He had prepared for Himself! He hastened to it with giant steps: Exaltavit ut gigas.
Jesus should do the same when coming to us in Holy Communion. He should long for the moment in which we would force Him, as it were, to leave His tabernacle. He should come to us with joy, as if going again to Mary. He will do so if we are pure. He expects of us this preparation of purity. It is only that that He demands. Great purity in receiving Holy Communion ought to be for us the fruit of the Immaculate Conception. Without purity, all virtues are as nothing. If that be wanting, Our Lord will come to us with repugnance, our heart will be to Him a prison. "Ah," He would exclaim to His priest, "whither are you carrying me? Into a heart that is not Mine, that My enemy possesses? Leave Me, leave Me in My tabernacle!"
O Mary, lend us thy mantle of purity, clothe us in white, in the brilliancy of thy Immaculate Conception. It belongs to the mother to adorn her child for festive days. Robed by thee, O Mary, Jesus will receive me kindly. He will come with pleasure. He will see thee in me, and He will find His delight in dwelling in my heart.
Practice: Prepare most carefully in union with Mary for Holy Communion.
Aspiration: Jesus in the Host loves the sacred dwelling of Mary’s womb more than all the tabernacles of Jacob.