• Sarah Raad


“Mary having cooperated in our redemption with so much glory to God and so much love for us, Our Lord ordained that nobody shall achieve salvation except through Her intercession.” (Saint Alphonsus Liguori).

Madonna del Popolo (Our Lady of the People) (Federico Barocci)

Last week – for the first time in the history of Australia – Australia Post called a hiatus on collection of the mail in certain places in NSW so that they could catch up on the significant backlog caused by a myriad of issues exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The timing of the hiatus was unfortunate for me, because I had just popped a small package into the mail for a young person who was suffering tremendously with his mental health.

In the package were a few scapulars, some prayer cards and a couple of rosary beads – all blessed… This may not seem like a lot for someone who was hospitalised for their mental health, but I consider this package ESSENTIAL.

Imagine my disappointment, when I realised that the package would be delayed and he would be unable to receive it for a period of time, when it was so urgently needed! “Oh well,” I thought to myself, “I shall simply have to pray that it arrives soon…” Lucky for me – God hears the prayers hat I should be praying as well as the prayer that I actually pray.

Because the package did not arrive SOON – it arrived PERFECTLY!

Guess when that package arrived? On the Feast of Our Blessed Mother’s Birthday – that is when!

Now, bear in mind that this young man and his family are not Catholic. In fact, I have no idea what – if any – religion they subscribe to. I have never spoken to them about God before – the subject just never came up.

So, you might imagine my trepidation in sending such a package as this to a family in crisis.

In the days before my conversion – which occurred through Grace and no merit of my own – I would never have done such a thing… I would have been too aware of judgement, and for fear of that judgement, I would have stayed silent and prayed for them only in my heart.

Now things have changed... Now, I am even more aware of judgement – God’s judgement. And with the Holy Spirit’s gift of the “Fear of the Lord”, now – though I pray for them in my heart – I also share those prayers with them and I speak of God to them.

Imagine my trepidation in sending these prayers that are so focused on the intercession of the Blessed Virgin to people who may be Christian with a misguided aversion to honouring Our Heavenly Mother, or people who reject God in His entirety...

And so, it was with a heavy heart that I offered to send my package, and though they are not Catholic, it was with a desperate heart that they consented to receive it…

And so, I sent it – I felt compelled to send it, though perhaps compelled is the wrong word – for LOVE does not compel, it MOVES – and I felt MOVED to send it.

And it was received, NOT soon, but at the perfect time… On the Feast of the Birth of Our Blessed Mother – that package was received as Her Heavenly Gift to this child on Her birthday – which she shared with him.

For Our Heavenly Mother is always giving – that is the job of an advocate – to continually give Her voice and Her time for us... Saint Irenaeus said, “As Eve was seduced by the word of an angel and so fled from God after disobeying his word, Mary in her turn was given the good news by the word of an angel, and bore God in obedience to His Word. As Eve was seduced into disobedience to God, so Mary was persuaded into obedience to God; thus the Virgin Mary became the advocate of the virgin Eve.”

For it seems only right to acknowledge the truth about Our Blessed Mother to everyone so that they can be saved. And as Saint Alphonsus Liguori said, “Mary having cooperated in our redemption with so much glory to God and so much love for us, Our Lord ordained that nobody shall achieve salvation except through Her intercession.”

And so – as I pray for this beautiful young soul and for his family – I ask the intercession of his mother – not his earthly mother, but his Heavenly One! For through Her intercession – all of us are saved!

For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.

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