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  • Marian Reflections

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Marian thought for July

The devotion to the Brown Scapular "has brought down a copious stream of spiritual and temporal graces upon the earth” (Pope Pius XII, August 6, 1950).

In 1246 St. Simon Stock was named Prior General of the Carmelite Order. St. Simon understood that, without the Virgin Mary’s intervention, the order was not going to last very long. He turned to Mary and placed the order under her protection, for they belong to Her. In his prayer he addressed Her as Flower of Carmel and Star of the Sea, begging Her to protect the community. In response to this fervent prayer, the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Simon Stock on July 16, 1251, and gave him the Scapular and the following promise: “This shall be a privilege for you and all Carmelites, that anyone dying in this habit shall not suffer eternal fire.”

St. Bonaventure

s buenaventura

“Men do not fear a powerful hostile army as the powers of hell fear the name and protection of Mary.”

St. Bonaventure was born in Bagnoregio, Italy, in 1221. After taking the habit in the Franciscan Order, he left to study at the University of Paris. From 1248 until 1257 he taught theology and Sacred Scripture at this university. In 1257, St. Bonaventure and St. Thomas Aquinas received the title of doctor together. He was the author of several treatises, including one on the "Holiness of Life." Also in 1257 he was elected superior general of the Friars Minor. He was elected during a difficult time for the Franciscan Order due to a division between those who preached an inflexible severity and those who solicited a mitigation of the original rule. For this reason, he wrote a letter to the provincials demanding of them perfect observance of the rule and the reform of those relaxed. St. Bonaventure governed the Franciscan Order for 17 years, which is why he is known as the second founder. In 1266, Gregory X named him Cardinal Bishop of Albano, ordering him to accept the position out of obedience. St. Bonaventure is characterized by his simplicity, humility, and charity. He won the title of Seraphic Doctor for his angelic virtues, was canonized in 1482, and declared Doctor of the Church in 1588.

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