Home. It is a magical word that resonates with all of us. Even those from broken homes, or homes that no longer exist, there is still something in the idea that is sought after. Home is that place where we are meant to be safe, nurtured, known for who we are, to freely live and love.
Both radical feminism and homosexuality have no use for healthy, ordered, loving men and women, parents, and children.
By Carrie Gress, Ph.D.
In 1917, during one of Our Lady’s apparitions at Fatima, the three shepherd children were given a vision of Hell. Our Lady warned that if people didn’t stop offending God then another war would come. In reparation, Our Lady asked “for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays.” She added, “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.”
What, then, were the errors of Russia that she was referring to? Most of us think of Russian errors largely as communist and Marxist ideologies. This is generally correct, as Marxism is behind most of the ideologies we face today either openly or surreptitiously.
But could there be more to it than just that? Something deeper than Marx and crew?
It has been 50 years. That’s how long ago the Sexual Revolution took the West by storm. This year brought another revolution: the #MeToo movement, which exposed some ugly facts. Sexual assault and harassment are far more widespread than we’d admitted. But are these two realities unconnected? Or did the first storm lead to the second?
These three small words were like a switch, moving me from my interior Martha, to whom Christ says, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things,” to becoming more like Mary, who chose just to focus her thoughts on Christ. Of her, Our Lord says, “Mary has chosen the better part” (Luke 10:41-42).
I just don’t feel a connection with Mary.” I have heard this over and over again from women, particularly in the last year since the release of my book The Marian Option. “Yes, I understand,” is always my response. For years and years, this is exactly how I felt.
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Last Fall, I published a prayer, the Litany of Light, that came to me one night. I wrote at the National Catholic Register:
It has become something of a nightly routine for one of my children to wake me up between 2-4 a.m. I can often get back to sleep quickly, but on one of those nights I found it difficult. I started thinking about all of the things that need prayer and charity in this world. “If only I could bring some light to these places,” I thought, feeling limited by my humanity and vocation to the four tiny souls entrusted to my care.
Over this last year, I have been studying beauty and the role of light in medieval thought. Through the likes of St. Hildegard of Bingen, Bishop Robert Grosseteste, St. Bonaventure, St. Thomas Aquinas and others, I have come to appreciate anew the role that Christ’s light plays here on Earth. Christ as the light of the world is a major theme of medieval thought. We have lost a sense of light’s importance in our own day largely because we can easily chase the dark away with the flip of a switch. This is, however, a relatively new development, even if most of us never experienced life any other way. But the medievals were fascinated by light, by the gift of it and by its transforming power physically, morally and spiritually. They spent copious amounts of precious ink trying to articulate the profound relationship between light and God, and what we can learn about the latter from the former.
So there in the darkness in the wee hours of the night, the thought hit me that even if I can’t go to these places and help, I could ask the Source of all light to go to them. I realized that I could send Christ to illuminate the very dark corners of the earth. The Litany of Light below is the fruit of these meager prayers. The saints included were all champions of sorts of Christ’s light. And the places of great darkness will be familiar to us all, in one form or another. Bishop Liam Cary, of the Diocese of Baker in Oregon, has graciously given it his imprimatur.
As our world seems to descend into greater darkness, we can be confident that our Advocate and Savior is with us and that He is “the light that shines in darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5).
Bishop Liam Cary, of the Baker Diocese in Oregon, issued an imprimatur for my prayer (which can be seen at NCR). Shortly after blogging about the Litany of Light, Marian Press reached out to me to print the litany and share it with others in print form.
The folks at Marian and I have worked together to improve the litany with changes here and there and a new imprimatur was issued. So this little prayer, that came to me in the darkness almost a year ago, is now seeing the true light of day.
To order your own copy to bring more light into the world, find them at Marian Press.