Our Participation in the Redemptive Suffering of Christ, Through, With and In Mary, Co-Redemptrix

Our Lady, Co-Redemptrix

Our Lady, Co-Redemptrix

by Jayson M. Brunelle

By now, most of my readers have become aware of what this author considers to be a chief goal of this website; namely, (1) underscoring, explaining and promoting Consecration to Mary; (2) promoting and explaining the theology of Mary’s salient and exalted roles as Co-redemptrix and Mediatrix; and (3) our own participation in the ongoing work of redemption, which is renewed daily, throughout the world, in the offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Throughout this site, the first two themes have been dealt with at length, both separately and together, with Mary’s roles as Co-Redemptrix and Mediatrix serving as the firm, sound theological foundation upon which the great devotion of Consecration to Mary in general, and her Immaculate Heart in particular, rest.  Yet, implied in the making and living of one’s act of Consecration to Mary and her Immaculate Heart is the reality that through this total gift-of-self, or oblation, that we make to our most holy Mother, we are opening, as widely as possible, the doors of our hearts, inviting Mary and the Holy Spirit, her well-beloved and Divine Spouse, to make their dwelling in our Hearts and souls for the great purpose of conceiving and, ultimately, giving birth to the image of the crucified Christ in our souls; that we, too, might become willing participants in the redemptive suffering of Christ, as so many co-redeemers, in imitation of Our Lady, Co-redemptrix.  Blessed Pope John Paul II, who shall likely be canonized later this year, stated the following in his marvelous encyclical letter, Salvifici Doloris:

“Declaring the power of salvific suffering, the Apostle Paul says: ‘In my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the Church.’ . . . Thus to share in the sufferings of Christ is to suffer for the kingdom of God.”

Moreover, in Romans 8: 14-17, St. Paul again points out the value and even necessity of salvific suffering, as he states: “”14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. ‘15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.[a] And by him we cry,’Abba,[b] Father.’ 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory” (Romans 8: 14-17).  Note the last sentence, where St. Paul states quite clearly that “we are…co-heirs with Christ, if indeed, we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”  Thus, St. Paul is going so far as to state that participation in the sufferings of Christ is not only a possibility; it’s a necessity for salvation and glorification!

Yet, few Christians grasp this dimension of their faith, this call to participate in the sufferings of Christ, much less respond with the generosity of the saints.  While the majority of Christians do seem to understand that they are, indeed, called to imitate Christ, our Lord, in all the sublime mysteries of His life, they’re quite content believing that Christ has suffered for them, in their stead, and that all that is required of them is an act of faith in the once-for-all, perfect redemption accomplished by Christ some 2000 years ago.

Yet, as we shall soon see, there’s no such thing as profound, heroic sanctity without profound, heroic suffering.  The two necessarily go hand-in-hand.  Those who labor for the kingdom of God never cease to encounter obstacles, difficulties, hardships, persecution, calumny, humiliation, and so on, and so forth.

It has been said that, “the salvation of the many depends of the sanctification of the few.”  This statement encapsulates the truth that while only a small handful of individuals actually respond to what the Second Vatican Council refers to as the “Universal Call to Holiness,” which constitutes the title of Chapter Five of Lumen Gentium, it is, however, in accord with the Divine Will that all souls should subjectively cooperate with the grace and mercy that is objectively made available to them through both prayer and each of the Church’s Sacraments, particularly, the Most Holy Eucharist.  The soul that generously responds to the universal call to holiness will, indeed, become transformed by grace, and will be configured and conformed to the image of the Crucified Christ.  Such souls participate in an especially intimate fashion in the redemptive suffering of Christ, the fruit of which is participation in the meriting of the grace necessary for the salvation of the many, especially in these times of the great apostasy, prophesied in Sacred Scripture, with so many souls  in grave danger of eternal perdition.

Further still, these souls most closely resemble Our Lady in her role as Co-redemptrix, for, they too, in imitation of Our Lady, unite their prayers and sufferings to Christ’s perfect offering of Himself, as both Priest and Victim – that is, the once-for-all, perfect offering of Christ’s Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity to the Eternal Father, which is renewed and truly made present in an unbloody fashion each time the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is offered by a validly ordained priest.  Yet, Mary’s Co-redemption is not simply an example or model to be imitated; rather,  just as she stood at the foot of Jesus’ Cross of Redemption,  she continues this same work of maternal love in regard to each of her Spiritual Children, enduring the intensity of each child’s pain, and helping each one to make his or her offering well, through, with and in her divine Son, Jesus, to the perfect glorification, adoration and honor of God, the Almighty and Eternal Father.  Thus, we can say that Mary’s Co-redemption extends to the entire Mystical Body, collectively, and to each member, individually, as she continues to carry out, in eternity and with her glorified body, which was assumed into heaven, the same Co-redemptive role that proved to be of such tremendous comfort – the sole comfort – to her dying Son.  Mary continues to offer her Son, Who lives, works, prays and suffers again through, with and in all of the members of His Mystical Body, especially those who communicate daily ( “The one who eats My flesh and drinks My blood lives in Me, and I in him” [Jn 6:56].)

Devotion to the Immaculate Heart, Marian Consecration and the Purpose of Fatima

Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta - visionaries of Fatima.

Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta – visionaries of Fatima.

by Jayson M. Brunelle

On July 13, 1917, during the third apparition of Our Lady to the three shepherd children of Fatima, Portugal, the Blessed Mother spoke the following words:

“You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.

“To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”

This message is of tremendous significance for our times, as it contains prophecies that have, indeed, already come to pass as well as prophecies that have yet to come to fruition.  I shall, then, divide the article into two parts.  In the first section, I shall discuss the theology of co-redemption, salvific suffering and, ultimately, the apex of devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which is total consecration to Mary’s Heart.  As we shall see, Marian Consecration, with its corresponding devotions of the wearing of the Brown Scapular and the daily praying of the Holy Rosary, is truly the antidote to the spiritually infectious disease of Marxist Atheism, the “error” that has, indeed, been spread throughout the world and that has given rise to the great apostasy through which we have been living in recent decades.  In the second section, attention will be given to the cosmic battle taking place between the “Woman” of Genesis and Revelation and the “Huge Red Dragon,” “the Black Beast,” and “the Beast like a Lamb.” Continue reading

Celebrating the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

St. Anne, St. Joachim, and Mary (Public Domain)

On this day in the Liturgical Calender, the Church celebrates the great Marian Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Those who have consecrated everything they are and everything they have to Her, as well as those who have yet to make a solemn act of consecration to Jesus through Mary, must know that celebrating and reflecting upon this Feast of Mary’s Nativity is integral to a better understanding of that profound littleness and poverty of spirit which authentic Marian devotion ultimately leads us to.  For, it is precisely on this feast, which celebrates the “littleness” of our infant Mother Mary, that we learn from her the necessary virtues of littleness, humility,docility, meekness, obedience and silence – that constellation of virtues which the Lord finds so very pleasing, and which laid the foundation for the exalted role that Mary, as the New Eve, would play with her son, the New Adam, in the economy of salvation.  For, it is precisely through poverty of spirit, littleness, weakness, and the recognition of our radical dependence on God, a God Who not only loved us into existence, but, additionally, redeemed us from sin while we were still mired in sin, that the Spirit, the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is capable of working in those souls who, totally consecrated to Mary, are truly childlike.  For, as Christ states, “Amen I say to you, unless you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 18:3). It is through the gift of our total consecration, or entrustment, to Mary that the Immaculate Mother of God, through whom the Holy Spirit has freely chosen to work, forms within our souls the image of the silent, obedient, meek, humble and crucified Christ.  Let us, for a moment, revisit the great Canticle of Mary, or the Magnificat (recited each day toward the end of Evening Prayer, by all bishops,  priests, deacons and religious of the Catholic Church, in the Liturgy of the Hours), in order to better comprehend not only Mary’s own reaction to the knowledge of the exalted role that she had been chosen by God to play in the economy of salvation, but additionally to understand that true poverty of spirit which she necessarily leads all of her clients and consecrated children to, provided they adhere to the dictates of her Motherly Heart and the solemn promises made to her via their total consecration: Continue reading

St. Joseph Epitomizes Perfect Consecration to Jesus Through Mary

by Jayson M. Brunelle

Consecration to Jesus through Mary has become very popular amongst orthodox Catholics attempting to grow spiritually and more perfectly conform their intellect and will to the divine intellect and will of Christ.  As many know, Mary always points to her Son Jesus and repeats to us what she stated at the wedding of Cana: “Do whatever He tells you.”  Moreover, according to  the great Marian saint Louis de Montfort, Marian consecration is the quickest, easiest, perfect and most secure way of giving ourselves over to Jesus, who came to us through Mary.  We most surely return to Christ using the same pathway He used in coming to us – Mary.  Few will dispute the profound efficacy of Marian consecration in making strides in the spiritual life and most perfectly conforming ourselves to Christ through Mary.  Continue reading