Saint Louis de Montfort

Today we honour the memory of the French priest, founder and Dominican tertiary Saint Louis de Montfort, who had an extraordinary devotion to Our Lady.  His book The Secret of the Rosary, is still in print today, and read by many.

Saint Louis considered Consecration to Our Lady as the most perfect way of renewing one’s baptismal promises.  His spirituality has been followed by millions, including several popes.

Saint Louis was canonised by Pope Pius XII in 1947 and the cause for his declaration as a Doctor of the Church is being pursued.

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I’m sure you know what it feels like to have unexpected guests to cater for.  When Our Lord asked Andrew and Philip how to feed an enormous crowd, they must have wondered, “What is he talking about?  We can’t feed this many people!”  They looked at what they had—two fish and five barley loaves—and concluded that it wasn’t enough.  What they had was too little to be useful.

We can feel this way about ourselves.  When we face the challenges of the day, and just simply trying to get along with the people with whom we share our lives, we might conclude that our resources of kindness, or energy, or money are too little.  What we have feels like it’s not enough to get us through the day, let alone be of much use to God.

But look at what Our Lord did with a few loaves and fish: he fed thousands.  He made it clear that it’s not the size of the gift that matters; it’s the immensity of his power that makes the difference.

So, what can we learn from this miracle?  First, little isn’t little when we give it to God.  God can do great things when we offer our modest gifts to him.  And second, nothing is wasted in God’s economy.  Even the leftover “fragments” of our acts of love are precious to him.  God sees and cares about the tiny sacrifices that no one else will ever notice, the unappreciated energy we put into helping someone out.  God blesses every moment we spend in prayer by filling us with grace so that we can pour it out again for his people.  All we have to do is offer what we have to God and watch him multiply it to meet the needs of the people around us.

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