Mystical City of God - Virgin Mary

By Sor Maria of Agreda


  INDEX   Book 3  Chapter  21    Verses:  261-269

261. Already two months had passed since the coming
of the Princess of heaven into the house of holy Elisa
beth ; and the discreet matron was even now filled with
grief at the thought of the departure and of the absence
of the Mistress of the world. She dreaded the loss of
so great a blessing as her presence was, and with reason,
since she knew, that it could not come within the range
of human merits; in her holy humility she scrutinized
her heart, fearing lest any fault of hers might be the
cause of the setting of that beautiful moon and of the
Sun of justice within the virginal Womb. Sometimes
She wept and sighed in private, because she could find
no means of prolonging their stay, which had shed much
clear light of grace in her soul. She asked the Lord
with many tears to inspire her Cousin, the most holy
Lady Mary, not to forsake her ; at least, not to withdraw
so soon her sweet company. She served Her with great
reverence and solicitude and studied to oblige Her. It is
no wonder, that so saintly, attentive and prudent a woman
should ask for that which even the angels coveted. For
in addition to the divine light, which she had received
from the Holy Ghost concerning the supreme dignity
and sanctity of the Virgin Mother, she had the personal
experience of her most sweet intercourse and conversa
tion, and all this combined had ravished her heart, so that
without divine aid, she could not have survived the part
ing, after once having known and conversed with the
blessed Lady.
262. In order to find some consolation, saint Elisa
beth resolved to open her heart to the heavenly Lady,
who was, however, not ignorant of her sorrow; and she
said to Her in great submission and humility : "Cousin,
dear Lady, on account of the respect and consideration,
with which I am bound to serve Thee, I have not until
now dared to speak of my desire and of the sorrow in
my heart; give me now the permission to relieve it by
making them known. The Lord has condescended in
his mercy to send Thee hither, in order that I might have
the unmerited blessing of conversing with Thee and of
knowing the mysteries, which his divine Providence has
entrusted to Thee, my Mistress. Unworthy I am to
praise Him eternally for this favor (Dan. 3, 53). Thou
art the living temple of his glory, the ark of the Testa
ment, containing the Manna, which is the food of the
angels (Heb. 9, 4). Thou art the tablet of the true
law, written in his own Being (Ps. 77, 25). I appreciate
in my lowliness how rich his Majesty has made me, that
without my merit I should entertain in my own house
the Treasure of heaven and Her, whom He has chosen
as his Mother among all women. I justly fear that I
displease Thee and the Fruit of thy womb by my sins,
and that therefore thou wilt forsake thy slave, with
drawing the great blessing, which I now enjoy. Pos
sibly, if it be thy pleasure, I might have the happiness
of serving Thee and remaining with Thee all the rest
of my life. If it is a hardship for Thee to return to thy
dwelling, it will be most convenient for Thee to stay in
my house. If Thou wilt call thy holy spouse Joseph and
live with him here as my masters, I will serve you with
affectionate readiness of heart. Although I do not merit
what I ask, I beseech Thee not to despise my humble
petition, since the Lord can surpass by his mercies all
my merits and desires."
263. The most holy Mary heard with sweetest com
placency the petition of her cousin Elisabeth and an
swered her : "Dearest friend of my soul, thy holy wishes
are acceptable in the eyes of the Most High. I also
thank thee from my heart; but in all our undertakings
and resolves it is necessary that we conform to the divine
will and entirely subject ourselves to it. Although this
is the duty of all creatures, thou knowest, that it is my
duty before all others, since by the power of his arm He
has raised me from the dust and in boundless love has
looked upon me (Luke 1, 53). All my words and move
ments must be guided by the divine will of my Lord and
Son and I must not desire anything except what is ac
cording to his pleasure. Let us present to his Majesty
thy desires, and whatever He in his goodness shall or
dain, that let us execute. I must also obey my spouse
Joseph, for without his order and consent, I can neither
decide upon my occupations, nor upon my dwellingplace;
it is just, my dearest, that we obey our superiors."
264. Saint Elisabeth yielded to the persuasive words
of the Princess of heaven and answered with humble
submission : "My Lady, I am ready to obey thy will
and revere thy teaching. I wish only once more to com
mend to Thee my sincere affection and heartfelt devo
tion to thy service. If my wishes cannot be fulfilled and
are contrary to the will of God, I desire at least, if pos
sible, that Thou, my Queen, do not forsake me until my
son shall come forth to the light; in order that, just as
within my womb he has adored and recognized his Re
deemer in thy own, so he may enjoy his divine presence
and enlightenment before any other creature; and that
he may receive thy blessing for the first advances in life
(Prov. 16, 9) by the presence of Him, who is to direct
his footsteps. And do Thou, the Mother of grace, pre
sent Him to the Creator and obtain from his goodness
the perseverance in that grace, which he received at
the sound of thy sweetest voice, when it came to my
unworthy ears. Let me behold my child in thy arms,
where the God, who made and preserves heaven and
earth, is likewise to rest (Is. 42, 5). Let not thy mater
nal kindness be strained or diminished by my sins ; deny
not this consolation to me, nor to my son this great hap
piness, which as a mother I ask and unworthily desire
for him."
265. Most holy Mary did not wish to refuse and She
promised to pray the Lord for the fulfillment of this
request of her cousin, asking her at the same time to
unite her prayers with hers in order to knov Ms most
holy will. Accordingly the two mothers of the two most
holy Sons born into the world betook themselves to the
oratory of the heavenly Princess and presented their peti
tions to the Most High. Most pure Mary fell into an
ecstasy, wherein She was enlightened anew concerning
the mysterious life and the dignity of the Precursor and
concerning his work in preparing the hearts of men for
the reception of their Redeemer and Teacher, and She
made known to saint Elisabeth these sacraments in as
far as it was proper. She was informed of the great
sanctity of her saintly cousin, also, that she had only
a short while to live and that Zacharias would die before
her. The kind Mother lovingly besought -the Lord to
assist her at her death and to fulfill her wishes in regard
to her son. In regard to the other fond desires, the most
prudent Virgin made no request, for in her heavenly wis
dorn She immediately saw, that to live always in the
house of her cousin was not advisable, nor according to
the will of the Most High.
266. To these petitions his Majesty answered: "My
Spouse and my Dove, it is my pleasure that thou assist
and console my servant Elisabeth at her childbirth, which
is to be very soon; for there are only eight days left
before that event. After her son shall be circumcised,
thou shalt return to thy home with thy spouse Joseph.
After his birth thou shalt offer to Me my servant John
in pleasing sacrifice; and continue, my Beloved, to pray
to Me for the salvation of souls." Saint Elisabeth united
her prayers with those of the Queen of heaven and earth,
beseeching the Lord to command his Mother and Spouse
not to forsake her during her confinement. During this
prayer the Lord revealed to her, that her confinement
was close at hand, and informed her also of many other
things for her relief and consolation in her anxiety.
267. Most holy Mary issued from her trance and, hav
ing finished their prayer, the two mothers conferred upon
the nearness of the confinement of saint Elisabeth as made
known to them by the Lord; and anxious to make sure
of her good fortune, the holy matron asked our Queen :
"My Lady, pray tell me, whether I shall have the hap
piness of thy assistance at my impending confinement?"
Her majesty answered: "My beloved cousin, the Most
High has heard our prayers and deigned to command
me to assist on that occasion. This I will do, not only
remaining till then, but also until the circumcision of thy
child, which will take place in fifteen days." At this
resolve of the most holy Mary the joy of her cousin
was renewed; she acknowledged this great favor in
humble thankfulness to the Lord and to the holy Queen.
Thus rejoiced and enlivened by mutual conferences, the
holy matron began to prepare for the birth of her son
and for the departure of her exalted Cousin.
268. My daughter, whenever our desires arise from
loving affection and are accompanied by a good inten
tion, the Most High is not offended at our making them
known, as long as it is done with submission and resigna
tion to the dispositions of his divine Providence. When
the soul presents itself before the Lord with such senti
ments, He looks upon it as a Father and grants to it
what is proper, withholds what is improper or does not
conduce to its true welfare. The desire of my cousin
to remain with me all her life arose from a pious and
praiseworthy zeal; but it was not in harmony with the
plans of the Most High, by which He had already ar
ranged the conduct, travels and events of my life. Though
the Lord denied her this request He was not displeased,
but granted her whatever would not hinder the decrees
of his infinite wisdom and whatever would benefit her
or her son John. On account of the love shown toward
me by the mother and son, and on account of my inter
cession, the Almighty enriched them with many blessings
and favors. For to ask Him with upright intention
and through my mediation, is always the most efficacious
means of moving his Majesty.
269. I wish that thou offer up all thy petitions and
prayers in the name of my most holy Son and my own ;
and be assured without doubt, that they will be heard, if
they are joined with the upright intention of pleasing
God. Look upon me with loving affection as thy Mother,
thy refuge and thy help; trust thyself to my devoted
love, and remember, my dearest, that my desire for thy
greater good urges me to teach thee the means of ob
taining great blessings and favors of divine grace at
the most liberal hands of God. Do not make thyself
unfit for them, nor hinder them by thy timidity. And
if thou wishest to induce me to love thee as my muchbeloved
daughter, rouse thyself to a fulfillment of what
I tell thee and manifest to thee. Toward this direct thy
careful efforts, resting satisfied only when thou hast
labored hard to put my teachings into practice.
the Work of God Apostolate - mcog #72                                                

INDEX  Page up ^^


 The Work of God

 Mistical City of God