1. How She Prays — With a holy curiosity, peek through the window of the house in Nazareth and find Mary absorbed in prayer. — What a sight! — Look at Her exterior demeanor, unexaggerated, without dramatic postures… kneeling… prostrated with Her forehead on the ground… Her hands folded or crossed over Her chest… Her eyes lowered and modestly composed or uplifted to fix Her gaze on Heaven. — Penetrate even further in order to see Her interior fervor; could there be room in Her for distractions, untimely thoughts, weariness, lukewarmness, boredom, etc.? — Look at Her well. She is your Teacher of prayer… the angels are astounded by Her and are attentive to Her prayer. — God rejoices in Mary and He communicates Himself to Her with an increase in grace; as fruit of Mary’s prayer, He grants benefits and favors to the world. — And you? Will you not learn to copy something of your Mother’s fervor?
2. What She Prays About — Jesus Christ later teaches us to pray for “the kingdom of God and its justice,” and this is what Mary prays for… that the Savior might now come… that God might send the Messiah… that the time of Redemption might come as soon as possible. She prays and pleads in such a way that God is pleased and, though She knows it not, He cannot deny Her prayer… thanks to Her prayer He anticipates the hour. — Remember the Wedding Feast at Cana. — Christ also says then, “my hour has not yet come,” but through Mary’s intercession, He goes ahead and works a miracle. — Think of God, changing His plan and anticipating the hour of sending His Son… the hour of manifesting Himself publicly in Cana with His first miracle, the hour of redeeming the world on the Cross… the hour of resurrecting early in the morning on Resurrection Sunday… and all because Mary prays for it.
3. Why She Prays — She prays because prayer is not only useful, but necessary. — She did not need it for Herself — neither did Christ — and yet, Jesus and Mary’s prayer is unending. — The first time that the Gospels refer to Mary, they present Her in prayer… and during Her prayer, She receives the angel’s visit. The last time that the evangelists mention Her, it is to tell us that She taught the disciples in the Upper Room to pray, and to prepare themselves, through prayer, to receive the Holy Spirit. — Mary begins and finishes Her story in prayer. — What examples God gives you to imitate! — In addition, with Her prayer, She prepares Herself to be the Mother of the Messiah, and because of this, while in prayer, She receives the angel’s visit. — All the work of the Incarnation is related to Mary’s prayer.
4. Your Prayer — In the presence of this sublime model, think: a) How necessary prayer is for you; passions, sins, imperfections and your own miseries, unceasingly remind you of this; b) The fruit that you could bear if you were a soul of prayer… the communication with God and the joy of spiritual things… perfection itself and holiness depend upon it; c) How you pray and how you should pray if you compare yourself with Mary… lack of fervor… internal and external attention… your weariness and routine… excuses to stop or cut down on prayer time, maybe precisely when you need it most; d) Examine your vocal prayer, how you pray the Little Office… the Rosary… the Litanies… your Marian devotions, etc.
Pray that you might have a great spirit of prayer. And pray that, by the prayer of good souls, the Lord might grant life to the world and form many children of Mary.