Day Nine – December 7, 2023 – Immaculate Conception Novena

The Blessedness of Dependence on Mary

If Jesus only preached eight beatitudes in His inaugural sermon, where does the ninth beatitude come from?

For the sake of this novena, the ninth beatitude is a uniquely Marian one. It can be found at the beginning of Luke’s Gospel. Upon reaching the house of her cousin Elizabeth, Mary was greeted with the words, blessed. Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! (Lk 1:42)

What Luke captures is the beatitude of Marian slavery love, or what we can call the blessedness of dependence on Mary. This beatitude lies at the heart of St. Louis de Montfort’s true devotion to Mary. In his treatise bearing the same title, Montfort gives several motives for making a perfect consecration to Jesus, through Mary. The second motive is today’s Marian beatitude. Uniquely Marian, it is also uniquely Christian. For the He who inspires it is Christ Himself. Montfort writes,

This good Master has not disdained to shut Himself up in the womb of the Blessed Virgin, as a captive and as a loving slave, and to be subject and obedient to her for thirty years.

It is here, I repeat it, that the human mind loses itself when it seriously reflects on the conduct of the Incarnate Wisdom, who has not willed, though He might have done so, to give Himself to men directly, but through the Blessed Virgin.

He did not will to come into the world at the age of a perfect man, independent of others, but like a poor and little babe, dependent on the cares and nourishment of this holy Moth- er.

He is that Infinite Wisdom, who had a boundless desire to glorify God His Father, and to save men; and yet He found no more perfect means, no shorter way to do it, than to submit Himself in all things to the Blessed Virgin, not only during the first eight, ten, or fifteen years of His life, like other children, but for thirty years!

He gave more glory to God His Father during all that time of submission and dependence to our Blessed Lady than He would have given Him if He had employed those thirty years in working miracles, in preaching to the whole earth, and in converting all men, seeing that His heavenly Father and Himself had ruled it thus. Oh! how highly we glorify God, when, after the example of Jesus, we submit ourselves to Mary![1]

In all honesty, nothing more needs to be said. On this last day of our Immaculate Conception Novena we simply need to take this ninth beatitude to prayer, contemplation, and examination.

Jesus in the womb of Mary! Jesus, dependent on Mary for 30 years! How blessed He is by this act of humble dependence! How blessed, how docile we would be to grace if we would humbly depend on Mary as He depends on Her!

The great secret to living out our Consecration to Mary lies within this great mystery, within this ninth beatitude.

Seize the day and make it all Hers!


Fr. Christopher Etheridge, IVE


[1] True Devotion to Mary, 139.