A thought for each Hail Mary,
taken from the "Mystical City of God,"
by Sister Mary of Jesus of Agreda
JOYFUL MYSTERIES: The Annunciation.
The first day: God makes the most holy Mary a participant of his wisdom.
The second day: He makes her a participant of the divine omnipotence.
The third day: He manifests to her the desire of his divine love to come to the aid of men.
The fourth day: He manifests to her the new law of grace.
The fifth day: the Princess is instructed in the great mysteries regarding the number of the predestined and the reprobate.
The sixth day: The Most High manifests to Mary, our Mistress, additional mysteries and shows her the works of the sixth day of creation.
The Most High celebrates a new espousal with the Princess of Heaven, in order to inaugurate the nuptials of the Incarnation.
The great Queen pleads for the hastening of the Incarnation.
The Most High manifests to her the fabric of the universe, and makes her Sovereign and Queen of all.
Mary listens to the message of the holy angel; the mystery of the Incarnation is enacted by the conception of the eternal Word in her womb.
Mary and Joseph journey to Juda: "The Lord be with you, my dearest cousin."
The Redeemer justifies the soul of John; Mary says: "May God save thee, my dearest cousin, and may his divine light communicate to thee grace and life."
Elizabeth and John see the Word made man, and extol Him and his Mother.
Elizabeth and Mary, like two seraphim, discourse on these mysteries.
A sweet competition arises between the two cousins.
The heavenly Princess converses with her angels.
Our Queen obtains pardon and remedy for a servant of the house, and the love of chastity for a woman living in the neighborhood.
The Queen receives in her arms the new-born Precursor.
St. Elizabeth secures the good counsel and instruction of the Mother of wisdom.
Most holy Mary commands the dumbness of Zacharias to leave him.
The ten thousand angels accompany Mary and Joseph, composing new songs in honor of the Lord.
The heavenly Lady exercises heroic virtues in return for the in-hospitality of mortals.
The Virgin Mother beholds the Godhead itself for over an hour.
At the end of the rapture, the most exalted Lady gave to the world the Onlybegotten of the Father.
She received her Son in her arms from the hands of the holy an-gels and said: "My sweetest love and light of my eyes, Thou hast arrived in good hour into this world as the Sun of justice, in order to disperse the darkness of sin and death! True God of the true God, save thy servants, and let all flesh see him, who shall draw upon it salvation."
The shepherds come to adore the Lord.
The most holy name of Jesus is brought from heaven by two cohorts of angels.
The divine Infant is circumcised and receives the name Jesus.
There is an interchange of caresses between the Infant and His Mother.
The three kings of the Orient come to adore the Word made man in Bethlehem.
The Holy Family journeys to Jerusalem, accompanied by many angels in visible human forms.
Simeon and Anne are enlightened and send the chief procurator to receive the holy Travelers.
The great Princess passes the night in divine colloquies.
Upon entering the temple, the most blessed Mother is immersed in an intellectual vision of the most holy Trinity.
Simeon offers the Infant Jesus up to the Eternal Father and ad-dresses himself to the most holy Mother.
The heavenly Lady begins a novena in the temple, and on the fifth day the Divinity reveals itself to her.
The angel of the Lord appears to St. Joseph.
The ten thousand heavenly courtiers accompany Jesus, Mary and Joseph as they set forth from the portals of the city.
An angel proceeds to inform the fortunate and blessed Elizabeth of all these events.
Most Holy Mary entertains the poor in Gaza, and interchanges canticles of praise in honor of the infinite essence of God.
The Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple.
The Lord tries the most holy Mary for thirty days.
The sweetest Jesus, most pure Mary, and Joseph go up together to the feasts of the unleavened breads, accompanied by ten thousand angels.
Jesus and Mary perform heroic works of charity for the benefit of mortals.
The afflicted Mother returns to Jerusalem, questioning the ten thousand angels.
She searches the byways and hospital of Jerusalem.
The most holy Mother and St. Joseph arrive at the temple and she approaches her most loving Son and speaks to him the words recorded by St. Luke.
At some distance from Jerusalem, the most prudent Lady kneels before her Son and his soul is revealed to her.
Upon arriving at Nazareth, the great Lady responds to the obedience and subjection of her most holy Son by heroic works.
The great Queen has a vision of the Divinity, in which she perceives that the holy Trinity decrees that she is to receive the New Testament.
The Lord enlightens the most blessed Mother by giving her a knowledge of the whole militant Church, the Sacraments, the doctrines, and all the Scriptures.
SORROWFUL MYSTERIES: The Agony in the Garden.
The Lord washes the feet of the disciples.
The Lord celebrates the sacramental supper.
The Lord's prayer in the garden, and His sorrow at the reprobation of so many.
The Eternal Father sends the Archangel Michael.
Christ returns to visit the Apostles and weeps over their sloth and negligence.
Christ is delivered into the hands of his enemies by the treason of Judas.
The Lord spoke to the soldiers: "I am He," and they all fell back-wards to the ground.
The apostles flee, and most holy Mary from her retreat sees them and prays for them.
Jesus the Savior is dragged to the house of Annas, where the wicked servant strikes Him in the face.
Christ is dragged to the house of Caiphas, and proclaims that He is the Son of God.
The Scourging at the Pillar.
Frightful insults were heaped upon the Redeemer, during which He established the beatitudes, which He had promised and proposed some time before.
The Savior is locked in a dungeon and the ministers of wicked-ness insult Him again.
The council convenes and condemns Christ to death.
The executioners bring Christ to the house of Pilate; the Blessed Virgin goes forth to meet Him, and prostrates herself before His sovereign Person.
Christ is sent to Herod and mocked.
Herod sends the Lord back to Pilate, during which the multitudes trod Him underfoot and kicked Him.
Christ is stripped and bound to one of the columns.
The first pair of executioners scourged the innocent Savior with thick cords, full of rough knots.
The second pair continued the scourging with hardened leather thongs.
The third pair of scourgers beat the Lord cruelly with extremely tough rawhides, and they also beat Him in the face and in the feet and hands, leaving unwounded not a single spot.
The Crowning with Thorns.
Jesus is clothed in a purple mantle.
A cap of woven thorns is placed on His head.
A contemptible reed is placed in His hand.
A violet-colored mantle is placed over His shoulders.
The soldiers bent their knees and buffeted Him.
Then they snatched the cane from His hands and struck Him.
They ejected their disgusting spittle.
Pilate showed Him to the people and said: "Ecce homo!" Mary fell upon her knees and openly adored Him as the true God-man. The same was also done by saint John and the holy women.
Pilate decrees the sentence of death against the author of life.
The Redeemer addressed the Cross with a countenance full of extreme joy.
The Carrying of the Cross.
The sorrowful Mother feels in soul and body the same torments as her Son.
The heavenly Mother hinders Lucifer and his companions.
She meets her Son face to face.
The sorrow of the most sincere Dove and Virgin Mother was be-yond all human thought while She witnessed with her own eyes her Son carrying the Cross.
The sweetest Jesus speaks to the women.
Simon of Cyrene carries the Cross.
The invincible Mother prays on Mt. Calvary and offers her Son to the Eternal Father as a sacrifice for the redemption of man.
The Savior is stripped of the seamless tunic.
With inhuman cruelty He is nailed to the Cross.
His bones are dislocated.
When the Queen of the angels perceived the insults heaped upon her Son, she was inflamed with a new zeal. By virtue of her prayer, all the elements were changed during the cruci-fixion and the hearts of the bystanders were enlightened.
Christ our Lord makes His testament in His prayer to the eternal Father, bestowing on the elect their inheritance, and disinheriting the reprobate.
"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."
"Woman, behold thy son!" "Behold thy Mother!"
The side of Christ is opened with a lance.
The body of the Lord was taken down from the Cross and placed in the arms of most holy Mary.
The sacred body was embalmed with the aromatic ointments, and placed on a bier. The heavenly Queen, accompanied by many angels and by some of the faithful, proceeded to the sepulchre, and therein placed the sacred body of Jesus.
She passed the night in the deep consideration of these mysteries.
She consoles the Apostles.
She contemplates the soul of her Son descend into limbo.
GLORIOUS MYSTERIES. The Resurrection.
The Savior arose from the grave, and in the presence of the saints and Patriarchs He promised universal resurrection to all men. The great Queen was aware of this and participated in it from her retreat in the Cenacle.
Accompanied by the saints and Patriarchs, our Savior appeared to the most blessed Mary, and she enjoyed briefly the beatific vision.
Still remaining in her exalted state, the great Lady turned to the holy Patriarchs and all the just, and spoke to each in succession.
The Lord appeared to Mary Magdalen and the holy women. Then they sought the Queen of Heaven to tell Her of the events.
The Lord appeared to Cleophas and St. Luke on the road to Emmaus.
The Lord appeared to the Apostles and later to St. Thomas. They immediately sought most holy Mary in order to relate to Her what had happened.
The Lord appeared at the sea of Tiberias to St. Peter, Thomas, Nathanael, the sons of Zebedee and two other disciples. Most holy Mary had a full intelligence of these mysteries and preserved them within her most prudent and chaste heart.
The great Lady persevered in her retirement for the forty days after the Resurrection and there enjoyed the sight of her divine Son and of the angels and saints.
Amid all the delights and jubilations of her retreat, the kindest Mother did not forget the misery of the children of Eve, and like a true Mother of mercy, offered for all of them her most fervent prayers.
The Eternal Father and the Holy Ghost appeared in the Cenacle upon a throne of ineffable splendor, surrounded by the choirs of angels and saints there present, and they entrusted Mary with the care of the Church and the new law of grace.
On the day of the Ascension, while the Lord was at the table with the eleven Apostles, other disciples and pious women gathered at the Cenacle, and the Lord bade them not to leave Jerusalem until He should send the Holy Spirit.
With this little flock Jesus left the Cenacle and conducted them all through the streets of Jerusalem to mount Olivet.
Jesus, His countenance beaming forth peace and majesty, joined his hands and, by his own power, began to raise Himself from the earth, drawing after Him also the celestial choirs of the angels and the holy Patriarchs. The most blessed Lady was raised up with her divine Son and placed at his right hand.
The entire divine procession arrived at the supreme regions of the empyrean, and the angels repeated the words of David: "Open, ye princes, open your gates eternal; let them be raised and opened up, and receive into his dwelling the great King of glory, the Lord of virtues, the Powerful in battle, the Strong and Invincible, who comes triumphant and victorious over all His enemies."
The Eternal Father placed upon the throne of his Divinity at his right hand, the incarnate Word, and in such glory and majesty, that He filled with new admiration and reverential fear all the inhabitants of heaven.
The great Queen hovered at the footstool of the royal throne, and prostrate she adored the Father and broke out in new canticles of praise for the glory communicated to His Son.
The Redeemer sent down two angels in white and resplendent garments, who appeared to all the disciples to console and encourage them.
After having remained in heaven for three days, enjoying in body and soul the glory of the right hand of her Son and true God, the most holy Mary departed with the benediction of the blessed Trinity from the highest empyrean and returned to the earth. She was enveloped in a cloud or globe of most resplendent light, and was borne downward by the seraphim, amid great splendor.
The three days in which the great Lady enjoyed the after-effects of glory and while the redundance of its splendors gradually lessened, She spent in most ardent and divine sentiments of love, gratitude and ineffable humility.
She began to converse with the faithful, offering prayers for all who in future ages were to receive the grace of the holy Catholic faith.
The Descent of the Holy Ghost.
A few days later she spent five hours with the Incarnate Word, enjoying His presence.
She instructed and prepared the Apostles and disciples for the advent of the Holy Ghost.
Prostrate in the form of a cross, she saw the petition of the Savior to send the Holy Ghost.
The Holy Ghost is sent, and the Blessed Virgin enjoys briefly the beatific vision.
The Apostles preach, and three thousand are converted.
The Blessed Mother speaks words of consolation to the new converts.
The catechumens are baptized; St. Peter celebrates the first Mass.
From her retirement the great Lady by especial vision saw the martyrdom of saint Stephen and his entrance into heaven.
She fasted for forty days, in preparation for the formulation of the Creed.
She prayed for the conversion of St. Paul, and witnessed it by an especial vision.
The most blessed Mary takes leave of the holy places and of the Holy Church; she makes her will.
Three days before, St. Peter arrives; he speaks to the assembly.
The Blessed Virgin kneels before St. Peter and St. John, and takes leave of the entire assembly.
The Incarnate Word descends from heaven; the angels sing the canticles.
Surrounded by the Apostles, the most blessed Mother dies of love.
The assembly sings hymns and psalms; great miracles occur.
The Apostles bear her body in procession to the valley of Josaphat and place it in a sepulchre.
The soul of Mary is received into glory and placed upon the throne of the most Holy Trinity.
Christ descends from heaven, accompanied by many angels and saints; Mary's soul resuscitates her body.
The saints and angels formed a solemn procession and ascended into heaven; the most blessed Mary arrived at the throne of the most blessed Trinity and was received by the three divine Persons with an embrace eternally indissoluble.
The most blessed Mary was assigned to the supreme position and state on the throne of the most blessed Trinity.
The eternal Father spoke to the angels and saints and said: "Our daughter Mary was chosen according to Our pleasure from among all creatures. We recognize Her dominion by crowning Her as the legitimate and peerless Lady and Sovereign."
The Incarnate Word said: "Of all things over which I am King, She too shall be the legitimate and supreme Queen."
The Holy Ghost said: "Since She is called my beloved and chosen Spouse, She deserves to be crowned as Queen for all eternity."
The three divine Persons then placed upon the head of the most blessed Mary a crown of such new splendor and value, that the like has been seen neither before nor after by any mere creature.
At the same time a voice sounded from the throne saying: "My Beloved, chosen among the creatures, our kingdom is Thine; Thou shalt be the Lady and the Sovereign of the seraphim, of all the ministering spirits, the angels and of the entire universe of creatures. Receive now the supreme dignity deserved by Thee and the dominion over all creatures."
The Almighty commanded all the courtiers of heaven, angels and men, to recognize Her as their Queen and Lady, and all rendered homage to her, especially saints Joseph, Joachim and Anne, and the thousand angels of her guard.
Within her body, over her heart, was visible a small globe or monstrance of singular beauty, in testimony of her having received holy Communion so worthily and holily.
St. Peter calls the Apostles and disciples, and decides to remove the stone from the sepulchre; he takes out the tunic and mantle and they sing psalms and hymns in honor of Mary.
An angel of the Lord descends from heaven to console the Apostles, and from her throne Mary takes care of them and protects them in their wanderings and at the hour of their martyrdom.
MARY OF AGREDA
Mary of Agreda, also known as Venerable Mary of Jesus of Agreda, was born in Agreda, province of Soria, Spain, in 1602, and died there in 1665. Mary was one of the eleven children of Francisco Coronel and Catalina de Arana. She had a desire for the religious life from early youth. In 1619 she became a Poor Clare Conceptionist at Agreda. Her mother and one of the sisters entered with her. Her father, although 60 years of age, took the Franciscan habit and thus made her mother's admission possible.
Mary was made abbess at the age of 25 by papal dispensation. Except for a period of three years, she remained in office for life. In 1633 she founded a new monastery outside Agreda, to which she transferred her nuns. In 1672, seven years after her death, Mary's cause was introduced in Rome, and she was declared Venerable.
After Mary became abbess at the age of 25, the most holy Virgin Mary frequently appeared to her and promised to help her in the government of her community. For a period of ten years She also revealed her life in many visions, and she commanded Sister Mary to write it down. She resisted these commands for many years, considering herself unworthy and incapable of such a sublime task. Finally, after being commanded to do so by her ecclesiastical superiors, she wrote the life of the most holy Virgin Mary, entitling it: Mystical City of God--the Divine History of the Virgin Mother of God, finishing it in 1660. As soon as it appeared in print, it was welcomed and extolled as a most wonderful work, and has inspired many souls to a life of greater perfection.
Bedsides the Mystical City of God, Mary of Agreda is remembered for her letters to king Philip IV of Spain. For a period of 22 years she advised the king about important matters of Church and state.
She is also remembered for her miracles of bilocation. For eleven years she appeared to the Indians of New Mexico, and taught them the truths of the Catholic faith.
A shortened version of the Mystical City of God is available on the Internet. Click here.
Life of Mary of Agreda
Divine Mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary
Divine Mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary. Taken verbatim from the Mystical City of God, by Mary of Agreda. Inspiring and beautiful help, for all those who wish to understand the depth and meaning of the Rosary. 600 pgs. Softcover. – $5.00 + 4.00 shipping. J.M.J. Book Company, P.O. Box 15, Necedah, WI 54646 ----- Tel. (608) 565-2516
The Mystical City of God, by Mary of Agreda, is available in PDF format from: Saints' Books -- Vol. I The Conception. -- Vol. II The Incarnation. -- Vol. III The Transfixion. -- Vol. IV The Coronation.
12-page booklet: Rosary Meditations from Mystical City of God. • Rosary Meditations
The Assumption from the Mystical City of God by Agreda.