A Mary Garden Roses & Violets V

Therese’ self-identified as a small flower, a constant and major theme, from her earliest memories

Inspiration for GG, Pivotal Quote

“I wondered for a long time why God has preferences, why all souls don’t receive an equal amount of graces. I was surprised when I saw Him shower His extraordinary favors on saints who had offended Him, for instance, St. Paul and St. Augustine, and whom He forced, so to speak, to accept His graces. When reading the lives of saints, I was puzzled at seeing how Our Lord was pleased to caress certain ones from the cradle to the grave, allowing no obstacle in their way when coming to Him, helping them with such favors that they were unable to soil the immaculate beauty of their baptismal robe. I wondered why poor savages died in great numbers without even having heard the name of God pronounced.

Jesus deigned to teach me this mystery. He set before me the book of nature; I understood how all the flowers He has created are beautiful, how the splendor of the rose and whiteness of the lily do not take away the perfume of the little violet or the delightful simplicity of the daisy. I understood that if all the flowers wanted to be roses, nature would lose her springtime beauty, and the fields would no longer be decked out with little flowers.

And so it is in the world of souls, Jesus’ garden. He willed to create great souls comparable to liles and roses, but He has created smaller ones and these must be content to be daisies or violets destined to give joy to God’s glances when He looks down at His feet. Perfection consists in doing His will, in being what He will us to be.

… if all souls resembled those of the Holy Doctors who illumined the Church with the clarity of their teachings, it seems God would not descend so low when coming to their hearts. But He created the child who only knows how to make his feeble cries heard; He has created the poor savage who has nothing but the natural law to guide him. It is to their hearts God deigns to lower Himself. These are the wildflowers whose simplicity attracts Him. When coming down this way, God manifests His infinite grandeur.”[1]

The Little has one rose, profoundly beautiful, does all he can do to save her. Sees the beauty is there.  Gift. Not merited. Daisy, daisy through the winter snow, immediate lift of the soul. Heart & mind away from the cold, sleeping of the world. Revival of hope.

  1. Mary’s Virtues (10) by St. Alphonsus Liguori[2] Expressed in Flowers
  2. Ardent Charity Red Rose p 334-340 Love of God & Love of Neighbor. Loving God above all things and loving our neighbor for His sake. The ability to Love God and then one’s neighbor is tied directly to a pure heart.

St. Thomas Villanova says that the bush seen by Moses, which burned without being consumed, was a true symbol of Mary’s heart

The heart of Mary became all fire and flames, as we read of her in the sacred Canticles (Cant 8:6); fire burning within through love as St. Anselm explains it, and flames shining without by the example she gave in the practice of virtue.

Our Lady revealed to St. Brigid that she never had any thought, desire, or joy in this world, but only in and for God: “I thought of nothing but God; nothing pleased me except God.” Since her blessed soul almost continually contemplated God while on earth, the acts of love she performed were innumerable. Father (Francisco) Suarez S.J. writes: “The acts of perfect charity Mary performed in this life were without number. Practically speaking, her whole life was spent in contemplation, and while she was in that state she constantly repeated acts of love.”

Fr. Francisco is considered by some to be the greatest scholastic after Aquinas. According to Christopher Shields and Daniel Schwartz, “figures as distinct from one another in place, time, and philosophical orientation as LeibnizGrotiusPufendorfSchopenhauer and Heidegger, all found reason to cite him as a source of inspiration and influence.”[3]

As Saint Peter Damian says:” The duties of an active life did not prevent her from loving, and love did not prevent her from performing her duties.”

[Mary] also said to St. Brigid: “If you want to love me, love My son.” Mary desires nothing more than to see her beloved, who is God, loved.[4]

Modern science removed certain features of the rose to the advantages of another. Beautiful to eyes, lose aroma, no thorns, lose beauty and aroma perhaps. Mary content to be rose of cetaion of creation and manipulation. All the beauty, thorns, scent. Rumer Godden Five for Sorrow, Ten for Joy

1/3 of rose is sorrow, thorns, but 2/3 is scent or the eye.

Lady lived those three elements so beautiful. Willing to be able to endure the sorrow. Present to them.

As Saint Peter Damian says:” The duties of an active life did not prevent her from loving, and love did not prevent her from performing her duties.”

[1] John Clarke, o.c.d. Story of a Soul: The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux (ICS: Washington D.C. 1976) 13-14

[2] Alphonsus Liguori, The Glories of Mary (Liguori: Liguori, Missouri 2000)

[3]  Shields, Christopher and Daniel Schwartz, “Francisco Suárez” in The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Accessed April 7, 2022

[4] http://www.catholic-saints.net/saints/st-bridget/st-bridget-of-sweden.php  Chapter 8-9

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