Monday, September 24, 2007

Feast Day of Our Lady of Ransom

Many years ago, a great apostolic work was begun, at the request of Mary the Mother of Jesus, who appeared to St. Raymond of Pennafort. It was the work of ransoming captives. Many Christians were being captured by the Moors in Spain and on the seas. In order to ransom these captives from slavery, one of the heroic methods that some of these generous people used was to offer themselves in the place of the person they were ransoming. Can you imagine giving up your freedom? Knowing you may be severely persecuted, as well as made to work hard for someone else's benefit? Yet, they did it all for God.

A special order was begun within the Church and these heroic people, by various means, rescued hundreds of thousands of captives over the years. You can read more about this at the Catholic Culture website.

Dear Mother Mary, please help those who are even today in slavery in various parts of the world, and please help us to remember to offer our prayers for them. Please help all our loved ones, and all we've been asked to pray for, who are slaves to addiction of one kind or another. Please help us not to be slaves to sin but to serve your Divine Son, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, with our whole heart and our whole mind and our whole soul. Amen.

2 comments:

diana said...

I must be terribly spiritually weak, because I could not do this. Only for my child. I hear about the terrible persecutions in China and North Korea and am overtaken by fear.

Sigh. I have along way to go before I can be a true disciple.

Margaret Mary Myers said...

Diana,
I'm with you. I love this feast day because I think Our Lady will ransom me and mine from sin (and others from slavery and abuse), not because I'd be willing to offer myself as a ransom! :) When I first became a Catholic, I prayed desperately to Our Lady of Perpetual Help that God would not ask me to be a martyr. (It was explained to me that in the picture the angels are holding the instruments of the crucifixion and that one of Jesus' sandals is hanging loose because He ran to His Mother for comfort.) Well, somewhere along the line I read that God does not give us graces UNTIL WE NEED THEM. Whew, what a relief. Of course, there were saints who sought martyrdom, but I think it was a special calling. Anyway, I'm a long way from that kind of holiness, or as you put it too spiritually weak for that. But Our Lady will help us - and God's grace will be sufficient - to face whatever God wills us to face in life. :)