Rorate Caeli

Devotion to Mary: the sure way to Christ

Orlando di Lasso
Alma Redemptoris Mater
Jesus, our Savior, true God and true man, must be the ultimate end of all our other devotions; otherwise they would be false and misleading. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and end of everything. "We labor," says St. Paul, "only to make all men perfect in Jesus Christ."

For in him alone dwells the entire fullness of the divinity and the complete fullness of grace, virtue and perfection. In him alone we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing; he is the only teacher from whom we must learn; the only Lord on whom we should depend; the only Head to whom we should be united and the only model that we should imitate. He is the only Physician that can heal us; the only Shepherd that can feed us; the only Way that can lead us; the only Truth that we can believe; the only Life that can animate us. He alone is everything to us and he alone can satisfy all our desires.

We are given no other name under heaven by which we can be saved. God has laid no other foundation for our salvation, perfection and glory than Jesus. Every edifice which is not built on that firm rock, is founded upon shifting sands and will certainly fall sooner or later. Every one of the faithful who is not united to him is like a branch broken from the stem of the vine. It falls and withers and is fit only to be burnt. If we live in Jesus and Jesus lives in us, we need not fear damnation. Neither angels in heaven nor men on earth, nor devils in hell, no creature whatever can harm us, for no creature can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. Through him, with him and in him, we can do all things and render all honour and glory to the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit; we can make ourselves perfect and be for our neighbour a fragrance of eternal life.

If then we are establishing sound devotion to our Blessed Lady, it is only in order to establish devotion to our Lord more perfectly, by providing a smooth but certain way of reaching Jesus Christ. If devotion to our Lady distracted us from our Lord, we would have to reject it as an illusion of the devil. But this is far from being the case. ...[T]his devotion is necessary simply and solely because it is a way of reaching Jesus perfectly, loving him tenderly, and serving him faithfully.
Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort
Treatise on True Devotion


  1. Anonymous9:05 PM

    Dear Rorate,

    Another picture seemingly portraying the Most Holy Mother of God and Her Son, God Almighty - but as so often on Rorate the picture lacks the symbol that would distinguish it as definitely of Holy/Saintly Persons - quote:

    "worship of veneration (cultus duliae) is due to the Saints; their image must be surrounded with a halo: [“Dictionary of Dogmatic Theology”, Fr. P. Parente, Bruce, 1952, p.37, under Canonisation]

    Why not teach Catholics the truth and help them to arrive at a fine conscience - away from the world's natural conscience of convenience?

    And BTW - images without halos could be those of any character of persons - there is only wishful thinking to see them otherwise - let's be Catholic as were Our Fathers.

    Secondly - also from time to time on Rorate - and so often of many Catholic Sites - even Traditional - is portrayed a naked infant Christ - this again was an artists aberrant conscience or ignorance - but this is at least highly irreverent - quote: Re Nude images Nudity nakedness especially of Jesus:

    "One of the allocutions which the servant of God heard had reference to the representations of children in an indecently naked condition. As the poor woman contemplated the mystery of the Incarnation in front of a picture in the church of St. Silvester in the Quirinal, Our Lady complained of this abuse, which is at variance alike with holy purity and the Gospel facts. ["Wife, Mother And Mystic. Blessed Anna-Maria Taigi", A. Bessieres S.J., Transltd by Rev. S. Rigby p 69-70]

    Best - Ad

  2. Thanks, Ad. I will surely ask Bellini not to do that again!!!!

    The Madonna del Prato is known for its iconography of the Pietà, which is why the Lord is depicted sleeping and without his clothes, but most respectfully - being worshipped by his Blessed Mother.

    OK, if this is the only comment on this post (did Ad actually read the text?), I'm cancelling future posts on the subject.


  3. Ad, you accuse Catholic master artists of having an aberrant conscience, but if you really have some kind of a hang-up over paintings of a naked Infant Jesus, I think you might want to examine your own conscience.

  4. That wretched Bellini has failed again. I must stop admiring his wonderful Madonna del Prato it is so lacking in symbolism. never mind, we will just have to put up with him as he is. Thank you for di Lasso which accompanies the Bellini most admirably.


Comment boxes are debate forums for readers and contributors of RORATE CÆLI.

Please, DO NOT assume that RORATE CÆLI contributors or moderators necessarily agree with or otherwise endorse any particular comment just because they let it stand.


(1) This is our living room, in a deeply Catholic house, and you are our guest. Please, behave accordingly. Any comment may be blocked or deleted, at any time, whenever we perceive anything that is not up to our standards, not conducive to a healthy conversation or a healthy Catholic environment, or simply not to our liking.

(2) By clicking on the "publish your comment" button, please remain aware that you are choosing to make your comment public - that is, the comment box is not to be used for private and confidential correspondence with contributors and moderators.

(3) Any name/ pseudonym/ denomination may be freely used simply by choosing the third option, "Name/URL" (the URL box may be left empty), when posting your comment - therefore, there is no reason whatsoever to simply post as "Anonymous", making debate unnecessarily harder to follow. Any comment signed simply as "Anonymous" will be blocked.

Thank you!