Missionaries and Marian

“The specific charism of our Institute requires all its members to work in supreme docility to the Holy Spirit and according to the example of the Virgin Mary.… This charism is the grace to work to extend the presence of Christ … fulfilling our essential call to be missionaries and Marian”

We profess to be essentially missionaries and Marian, and we desire to work “in supreme docility to the Holy Spirit and according to the example of the Virgin Mary,”[1] to make “a fourth vow of slavery to Mary according to the spirituality of St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort … [which will] secure her indispensable help in perpetuating the Incarnation in all things.”[2]

Our spirituality “that longs to be of the Incarnate Word”[3] is “marked with a special prominence”[4] because of our consecration to Mary “‘in maternal slavery of love’ according to the admirable method taught by St. Louis Grignion de Montfort” [5] in professing our fourth vow, “so as to ‘marianize’ our whole life.”[6]

This is what we say in the fundamental code of our spirituality: “Not Jesus or Mary; not Mary or Jesus. Neither Jesus without Mary; nor Mary without Jesus. Neither only Jesus, but also Mary; not only Mary, but also Jesus. Always Jesus and Mary; always Mary and Jesus. To Mary through Jesus: Behold, your mother! (Jn 19: 27). To Jesus through Mary: Do whatever he tells you (Jn 2: 5). Everything through Jesus and through Mary; with Jesus and with Mary; in Jesus and in Mary; for Jesus and for Mary. In short, simply: Jesus and Mary; Mary and Jesus. And through Christ, to the Father, in the Holy Spirit.”[7]

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For us as religious of the Incarnate Word, this fourth vow[8] implies, on the one hand, surrendering to the Mother of God with great courage all that we are, all that we have, “as well as everything we shall acquire in the future in the order of nature, of grace, and of glory in heaven. This we do without any reservation … and for all eternity without claiming or expecting, in return for our offering and our service, any other reward than the honor of belonging to our Lord through Mary and in Mary.”[9] We place absolutely everything in her hands because we recognize ourselves as her slaves of love.  And on the other hand, this consecration by means of a vow implies that it “is our desire, our explicit intention to marianize our entire lives, which means doing all things through Mary, with Mary, in Mary, and for Mary, so as to do all through Jesus, with Jesus, in Jesus, and for Jesus … entering into that mysterious current of life which was brought to us by our Heavenly Mother, and with her to learn to give glory to our Heavenly Father by the grace of the Holy Spirit.”[10]

Since Marian devotion is an essential part of evangelization, we follow the splendid motion of St. Louis Marie: “Since we have given ourselves completely to her service, it is only right that we should do everything for her … [and] like every good servant and slave we must not remain idle, but, relying on her protection, we should undertake and carry out great things for our noble Queen.”[11]

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[1] Constitutions, 30.

[2] Constitutions, 17.

[3] Directory of Consecrated Life, 413.

[4] Directory of Spirituality, 19.

[5] Constitutions, 83.

[6] Directory of Spirituality, 19.

[7] Directory of Spirituality, 325.

[8] Explained in our Constitutions, nn. 82-89.

[9] St. Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort, Treatise of True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, 121.

[10] Fr. Carlos Buela, IVE, Homilía “Todo lo hace Ella”.

[11] Cf. St. Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort, Complete Works, Treatise on True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, 265.

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