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FRIDAY OF THE THIRD WEEK OF EASTER, APRIL 28, 2023 OPTIONAL MEMORIAL ST LOUIS DE MONTFORT


Born: 31 January 1673; Montfort-sur-Meu, France

Died: April 28, 1716 Saint-Laurent-sur-Sèvre

"God Alone"




Responsorial Psalm

"Go out to all the world and tell the Good News."


REFLECTION


The anti God forces of the French Revolution 1793 were determined to wipe out the Catholic Church. Many priests and religious were guillotined if they refused to swear an oath making them servants of the secular state. There was a particular village by the name of Vendée that had been evangelized and radically changed by a vagabond preacher and Marian missionary by the name of Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort. He had radically changed the spirituality of the region. Vendée resisted this evil force more than other areas. Many were slaughtered.


Born in the Breton village of Montfort, close to Rennes, France, as an adult Louis identified himself by the place of his baptism instead of his family name, Grignion. He was the second child of 18. After being educated by the Jesuits and the Sulpicians, he was ordained a diocesan priest in 1700. It was during his seminary days that he began to develop his strong devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and love for the poor.

As he walked to the seminary with brand new clothes, he gave all his clothes to the poor whom he saw on his way. By the time he made it to the seminary, he was threadbare.


He founded the Montfort Fathers to continue his mission and retreat work and to spread devotion to Mary. Many of his contemporaries did not understand him, so he was ridiculed and mocked by the donors and fellow priests.


He was not allowed to go out and preach. Several times he got into trouble with the bishop and fellow priests because of his preaching. Frustrated he visited the Pope regarding his future endeavors. In this special meeting, St Louis de Montfort asked the Pope's permission to be an itinerant missionary to the poor in North America. However, Pope Clement XI told him he was needed in France. He named him apostolic missionary for France in 1706. He spent the rest of his life preaching missions among the poor in western France. He always walked from village to village. His particular spirituality was founded on the mystery of the Incarnation of Jesus Christ.


St. Louis-Marie adopted as his motto these simple words: "God Alone." He sang: "God alone is my tenderness, God alone is my support, God alone is my every good, my life and my wealth."1


He formed the Company of Mary, a small company of priests to preach missions and retreats under the protection of the Blessed Virgin. He was chaplain of the hospital of Poitiers for the poor. He also formed the Daughter of the Wisdom congregation.


He was also known for his veneration of the holy angels. "The good Father from Montfort" attracted many people to help him in the service of the poor.


He wrote a lot, as well, in the field of Mariology. Some of his books are Secret of the Rosary , True Devotion to Mary ,The Secret of Mary and Total Consecration.


He walked everywhere, even to Rome to visit the Pope. Worn out by hard work and sickness, he died having been a priest for only 16 years. His last sermon was on the tenderness of Jesus and the Incarnate Wisdom of the Father.


"....of all creatures the one most conformed to Jesus Christ, it follows that among all devotions that which most consecrates and conforms a soul to our Lord is devotion to Mary, his Holy Mother, and that the more a soul is consecrated to her the more will it be consecrated to Jesus Christ." (St Louis de Montfort)


In PAPA we want to see priests with the same zeal St Louis-Marie de Montfort had for preaching, helping the poor and leaving all to God. Please pray for this Patron of Preachers to be a profound example for our priests. "Go out to all the world and tell the Good News."


References:

EWTN: Jesus Living In Mary - The Life Of St Louis Marie De Montfort


God Bless You


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