Immaculate Heart of Mary
Medium: Coloured Pencil with Goldleaf
“BEHOLD THE HANDMAID OF THE LORD.
LET IT BE DONE UNTO ME ACCORDING TO THY WORD”
~ Our Lady to the Archangel Gabriel (Luke 1:38)
(A poem by Adelaine)
O quiet heart of ceaseless praise
On God alone you fix your gaze
His Spirit’s kindling you receive
And burn with purest love ablaze.
No taint of Adam’s sin you’ve known –
A crown bestowed on you alone!
Yet mercy is your tender kiss;
No sinner can your heart disown.
Heart so unblemished, yet a sword
Has pierced you through as pierced my Lord.
Now rend me through with love anew
‘Till sin’s undone and peace restored.
Sweet treasure chest with virtues blessed,
As Jesus laid upon your breast
Please hold me close as that Pure Host
That in your heart I may find rest.
Mother of Christ, Mother of mine
Embraced by tender love divine
Replace my stony heart with yours
That out of dust His light may shine.
And when my days on earth are done
I pray, dear Mother, be the one
To lead me on to Heaven’s dawn
And give this child to your Son.
Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary has developed over the centuries. While Our Lady’s apparitions to St. Catharine Laboure (1830) and the three Fatima children (1917) did much to spread this devotion, the roots of this devotion are planted in Sacred Scripture. In the Gospel of Luke, the Archangel Gabriel hails the humble virgin of Nazareth as “full of grace” (Luke 1:28). This greeting signifies the angelic innocence of her virginal heart, conceived without original sin and pervaded by the sanctifying breath of the Holy Spirit. From her infancy, Mary’s soul was wholly fixed upon God. The Word of God was her constant occupation, long before He became flesh in her womb. We see a portrait of Our Lady’s beautiful, contemplative heart in Luke 2:19: “But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart.” For thirty years, she enjoyed profound intimacy with the King of Heaven, who dwelt beneath her roof. We find in the example of Christ a compelling invitation to submit ourselves, as He did, to Our Lady’s maternal care and authority.
Jesus made this invitation explicit at the hour of His death, giving us His Mother as His last will and testament. As He hung upon the Cross, He said to Our Lady, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then, to St. John, the beloved disciple, he said, “Behold, your mother!” (John 19:26-27). In Bethlehem, Mary gave birth to Christ in His physical body. On Calvary, Mary gave birth to Christ in His Mystical Body, the infant Church, but the labour pains were in her heart this time. At last, as she beheld her tender child pierced with the sins of mankind, Simeon’s prophesy came to pass: “and a sword will pierce through your own soul also” (Luke 2:35).
As we take Jesus as our King, may we take Mary as our Queen, that she purify our hearts and make them fit for His everlasting Kingdom.