Stories of Mary 30:
The Adulteress and the Wife
“Justice, Mother of God, justice.”
Our blessed Lady answered:
“Justice? Do you seek justice from me?”
How Great Is the Clemency and Mercy of Mary
Father Charles Bovius relates that in Doinana, France, lived a married man who had held a criminal connection with another woman. Now the wife, being unable to endure this, continually besought God to punish the guilty parties; and one day in particular went to an altar of the blessed Virgin, which was in a certain church to implore vengeance upon the woman who had alienated her husband from her; and this very woman went also every day to the same altar, to repeat a “Hail Mary.”
One night the divine Mother appeared in a dream to the wife, who, on seeing her, began her accustomed petition: “Justice, Mother of God, justice.” But the blessed Lady answered: “Justice? Do you seek justice from me? Go and find others to execute justice for you. It belongs not to me to do it for you. Be it known to you,” she added:
“that this very sinner offers every day a devotion in my honour, and that I cannot allow any sinner who does this to suffer and be punished for her sins.”
The next day the wife went to hear Mass in the above named church of our Lady, and on coming out met her husband’s friend; at the sight of her she began to reproach her and call her a sorceress, who had even enchanted with her sorceries the blessed Virgin.
“Be silent,” cried the people: “what are you saying?”
“I be silent!” she answered: “What I say is only too true; this night the Virgin appeared to me; and when I implored justice of her, she answered me that she could not grant it on account of a salutation which this wicked woman repeats daily in her honour.”
They asked the woman what salutation she repeated to the Mother of God. She answered that it was the “Hail Mary”; and then on hearing that the Blessed Virgin had dealt with her so mercifully in return for that trivial act of devotion, she cast herself on the ground before the sacred image, and there, in the presence of all the people, asked pardon for her scandalous life, and made a vow of perpetual continence.
She afterwards put on a religious habit, built for herself a little cell near the church, where she retired, and persevered in continual penance until the day of her death.
Oh, Mother of Mercy! Since thou art so compassionate and hast so great a desire to do good to us sinners, and to satisfy our demands, I, the most wretched of all men, today have recourse to thy mercy, that thou mayest grant my requests. Let others ask what they will, health of body, wealth, or temporal advantages; I come to ask of thee, oh Lady, those things which thou thyself dost most desire of me, and which are most conformable and most pleasing to thy Immaculate Heart.
Thou who wast so humble, obtain for me humility and love of contempt. Thou who wast so patient in the difficulties of this life, obtain for me patience in things contrary to my wishes. Thou who didst overflow with love of God, obtain for me the gift of a holy and pure love. Thou who wast all charity towards thy neighbour, obtain for me charity towards all men, and especially towards those who are my enemies. Thou who wast wholly united to the divine Will, obtain for me a perfect uniformity with the Will of that God in all His dispositions concerning me.
Thou, in a word, art the most holy of all creatures; oh Mary, obtain for me the grace to become a saint. Thy love is unfailing; thou canst and wilt obtain all things for me.
Nothing, then, can hinder me from receiving thy graces but my neglect to invoke thee, or my want of confidence in thy intercession. But thou thyself must obtain for me the grace to seek thee, and this grace of confidence in thy intercession.
These two greatest gifts I ask from thee – from thee will I receive them – from thee do I confidently hope for them. Oh Mary! Mary, my Mother, my hope, my love, my life, my refuge, and my consolation. Amen.
“Stories of Mary” are taken from the Glories of Mary, translated from the Italian of St. Alphonsus Liguori; New Revised Edition, P.J. Kennedy & Sons. Copyright 1888 by P.J. Kennedy