Australians awoke Sunday morning to news that the Coalition government had been returned. A friend messaged a Youtube link of Gordon MacRae singing “O what a beautiful morning” to sum up his mood.
I could not have been more agreeable to those sentiments.
Still, while the election of the Morrison government may well feel like a reprieve, the task ahead is roughly the same as it would have been in the event of an ALP victory.
How can I say that? Because, as the historian Charles Coulombe tweeted this week, “The problems facing Europe, the West, and the World are religious, not political.”
So, what’s the answer?
How do we come to Jesus?
Through Mary; as has been the case since the Annunciation.
Mary, Help of Christians: Our Patroness
At Parousia, we tend not to get into politics, either civil or ecclesiastical, but keep the focus on living our Catholic faith. But I wondered if the election result occurring in the same week as Australia’s national patronal feast was a coincidence.
Pope Pius VII established the feast of Mary, Help of Christians, in 1815, a year after Our Lady rescued the pope from captivity at the hands of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Our Lady was chosen to be patroness of Australasia in 1844, when the colony was under the providential guidance of Archbishop Bede Polding.
The first country in the world to adopt Our Lady’s patronage under the title Help of Christians, Australians invoke Mary’s motherly intercession in liturgical solemnity on 24 May each year.
The Entrance Antiphon at Mass for the solemnity is taken from Song of Songs, reading thus,
Who is this, arising like the dawn fair as the moon, resplendent as the sun, terrible as an army with banners? (Sg 6:10)
Our Lady, in her humility, is a warrior. Living under her mantle gives us hope for the mission to make her Son known and loved in a society that has forgotten him.
A 3-Step Plan for Our Nation
I’d like to suggest three things that we can do to bring our families and our nation under Our Blessed Mother’s mantle.
1. Pray the Rosary daily
Pray the Rosary daily, in order to obtain peace for the world, and the end of war. These are the words of Our Lady of Fatima in 1917. They were spoken to the three little visionaries, but the message is for the world.
A few years earlier, Pope St Pius X, who re-established the practice of frequent reception of Holy Communion, said that
“The Rosary is the most beautiful and the most rich in graces of all prayers, it is the prayer that touches most the Heart of the Mother of God … and if you wish peace to reign in your homes, recite the family Rosary.”
2. Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary
The solemnity of Mary, Help of Christians is the perfect day to begin the 33 days of St Louis de Montfort’s total consecration to Jesus through Mary, culminating at the feast of Corpus Christi on 23 June.
3. Consecrate Australia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary
Urge the bishops of Australia to consecrate our nation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
There is no better time for them to do this as a united episcopate than at the Plenary Council in 2020.
And a good place for the bishops to find inspiration is the Act of Consecration to Our Lady of Fatima by Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP, Archbishop of Sydney, on the occasion of the centenary of Our Lady’s appearances at Fatima in 2017.
Consecration Prayer to Our Lady of Fatima, by Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP
“O Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of heaven and earth, and tender Mother of humanity, in accordance with your ardent wish made known at Fatima, I consecrate to you myself, my brothers and sisters of the Archdiocese of Sydney, and the whole human race.
We commit to you all the members of this local Church, beginning with the weakest ones, from the unborn to the sick, the disabled and the elderly.
We commit to you our families, our children, our young people, the single, the widowed and the lonely.
We entrust to your Immaculate Heart especially hurt and broken families, for those who seek the meaning of life but who are getting lost in a world of confusion, immoral influences, and distorted ideas.
Reign over us and teach us how to make the Heart of Jesus reign and triumph in us and around us, as it has reigned and triumphed in you!
Reign over us, dearest Mother, that we may be your children in prosperity and in adversity, in joy and in sorrow, in health and sickness, in life and in death!
O most compassionate Heart of Mary, Queen of Virgins, watch over our minds and hearts, and preserve them from the deluge of impurity which you lamented so sorrowfully at Fatima.
We want to be pure like you. We want to atone for the many crimes committed against Jesus and you.
We want to call down upon our city, our country and the whole world the peace of God in justice and charity!
Help us as we resolve to live according to the Gospel, to fulfil the Commandments of God and those of the Church, to receive the sacraments worthily, especially the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist, and to contribute to the building up of the Kingdom of your divine Son, in union with his most Sacred Heart.”
Comment below your prayers for our nation as we join together in prayer!