Preparation for Total Consecration according to Saint Louis de Montfort
Preparation for Total Consecration according to Saint Louis Marie de Montfort was inspired by Louis de Montfort and published in 2001. Saint Louis dedicated his life to following and praying to the Virgin Mary. His devotion to Mary was even considered “the best and most acceptable form of devotion to Our Lady” by Pope Pius IX. Four of his performed miracles were examined by the Sacred Congregation. Saint Louis de Montfort was canonized by Pope Pius XII on July 20, 1947, over two hundred years after his death. The process took a very long time due to his lack of followers and the unfortunate era in which he died. His two biographies, one by Grandet and the other Father de Clorivière, both dated in the 1700s, which was a time of “immense social and religious upheaval.”
Saint Louis de Montfort found it his life’s mission to be devoted to Mary. He believed that in order to thoroughly follow Jesus, one had to go through Mary first. The process of total consecration to Jesus through Mary came to light. Preparation for Total Consecration according to Saint Louis Marie de Montfort was published by Montfort Publications in Bay Shore, New York, in 2001.
The purpose of the consecration is to rid the self of the spirit of the world and to become completely in tune with the lives of Jesus and the Mother Mary. This particular consecration is a thirty-three-day-long process in which the final day falls on a feast day of the Blessed Virgin.
Part I: Twelve Preliminary Days
The first twelve days of the consecration are set aside as the preliminary days, meant to rid one’s self of all outside hindrances. Saint Louis de Montfort declares that this “part of the preparation should be employed in casting off the spirit of the world which is contrary to that of Jesus Christ.” After a short introduction to the preliminary days is given, Saint Louis provides a list of three prayers that should be said daily. These prayers include Veni Creator, Avi Maris Stella, and the Magnificat. Each day also entails a short meditation meant to be reflected upon before the prayers. The daily meditations tend to include one or two bible verses accompanied with a couple reflective words from the saint himself.
Part II: Knowledge of Self
After the twelve days are completed, the consecration moves on to Part II: Knowledge of Self. In this section, Saint Louis de Montfort’s goal for the consecrator is to “consider not so much the opposition that exists between the spirit of Jesus and ours, as the miserable and humiliating state to which our sins have reduced us.” The prayers for this period are a bit longer, consisting of the Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin, and the Ave Maris Stella.
Part III: Knowledge of Mary
Once the Knowledge of Self week is complete, the next section of the consecration to be prayed is Part III: Knowledge of Mary. During this period, it is important to reflect upon “the interior life of Mary, namely, her virtues, her sentiments, her actions, her participation in the mysteries of Christ and her union with Him.” The prayers said for this section include the same as the previous. However, the consecrator is to say a daily rosary amid everything else. This week is a more challenging part for consecrators, as it leads to an hour to two hours of prayer and reflection.
Part IV: Knowledge of Jesus Christ
The fourthand final part of Saint Louis de Montfort’s consecration is the Knowledge of Jesus Christ. The prayers for this section include Litany of the Holy Ghost, Ave Maris Stella, Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus, St. Louis de Montfort’s Prayer to Jesus, and O, Jesus Living in Mary. At the finish of the consecration, usually the consecrator is to purchase a chain that can be worn around the wrist as a constant reminder of one’s slave hood to Mary and Jesus. In order for the consecration to be complete, the consecrator must attend Mass on the final day, partake in confession either the week before or after, and do a personal penance for Mary.
- St. Louis de Montfort, True Devotion to Mary (Rockford, Illinois: Tan Books and Publishers, Inc., 1941) p. v
- Jesus Living in Mary: Handbook of the Spirituality of St. Louis de Montfort (Litchfield, CT: Montfort Publications, 1994) http://www.ewtn.com/library/Montfort/Handbook/Canonize.htm
- Preparation for Total Consecration According to Saint Louis Marie de Monfort, (Bay Shore, New York: Montfort Publications, 1996) p. 1
- Preparation for Total…, p. 21
- Preparation for Total…, p. 38