Download Leader’s Guide: Going Deeper
Loving God, send your Spirit to open our hearts to Jesus. Guide us to a deeper conversion. Grant us a greater appreciation of the beauty and truth of our Catholic faith. Give us the courage and confidence to joyfully share our faith with others. May your Church be a beacon of light for all who seek your loving presence. Be with us now as we explore our relationship with Mary, Our Blessed Mother. Mary, faithful Mother of God, intercede for us. We make this prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
Luke 1: 26-38
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke: In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming to her, he said, “Hail, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” But Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” And the angel said to her in reply, “The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.” Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.
The Gospel of the Lord:
Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ.
Opening Song (or select your own song):
Perfect Love (Mary’s Song) with lyrics
CeeLo Green – Mary Did You Know (The Bible)
Video #1: Mary, Our Blessed Mother
- What are some of the knots in your life? When has God’s mercy unraveled a knot in your life?
- What struck you about Liz’s witness on the sorrows in her life? With which of the seven sorrows of Mary can you most identify? Why?
- What situation can you surrender over to God’s care?
Video #2: Faith Formation Session #5: Mary, Our Blessed Mother
- Several witnesses expressed their struggle with their relationship with Mary. What has been your journey toward Mary?
- Msgr. Bleich spoke of Mary allowing God to overshadow her and to use her body for the kingdom of God. In what ways have you given over your body to Christ? In what areas do you struggle to give over completely your body, mind, and spirit (human sexuality, material desires, attitudes, service, ascent of faith) to God?
- Many spoke of the power of the Rosary as a way of reflecting on the life of Christ—as well as our own. What has been your experience of praying the Rosary? Katherine spoke of praying with the Crowning of Thorns; with which mystery have you had a powerful connection?
Video #3: Faith Formation Session #5: Mary, Our Blessed Mother
- Mary has appeared in Mexico, Fatima, and Lourdes. Have you visited any Marian sites or shrines? What are your beliefs or experiences regarding Mary’s appearances?
- What struck you about the depth of devotion of our witnesses to Our Lady of Guadalupe, such as the remark, “She is everything to me!” Why do you think Hispanic men and women are so devoted to her?
- Most of those interviewed had a very real sense of “Mary as Mother.” How is your mother similar to the Blessed Mother?
Conclusion: What difference does it make in one’s life to have a devotion to Mary, Our Blessed Mother? Please be sure to make time for large group discussion:
1. What did you learn about Mary, Our Blessed Mother?
2. What did you like best about the session?
3. What is one thing you will share with someone at home or in your sphere of influence?
Prayer below (or recite The Magnificat):
Loving God, we thank you for the gift of your Mother, Mary. Grant us a deep desire to remain close to Mary, our Blessed Mother. May our devotion to Mary bring us ever closer to you. Give us the strength and courage to live as Mary’s children. Make us into a people who journey to you through Mary. Mary, Blessed Mother of the Word Incarnate, intercede for us. We make this prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit. one God, forever and ever. Amen.