May is the month of Mary, and Mother’s day is right around the corner. Now is the perfect time to start a book on the Blessed Mother. Here are 7 excellent reads about Mary. Check out the other Seven Quick Takes on This Ain’t The Lyceum.
by Scott Hahn
Dr. Hahn is one of my favorite living authors (he’s also an amazing speaker if you ever get the chance to see him live!). This book is accessible for a modern audience with only a beginner’s knowledge of Mary.
I appreciate his viewpoint as a former Presbyterian minister. He discusses his own journey to the fullness of Marian doctrine with humor and ease. Dr. Hahn is a brilliant theologian, but also a warm and funny author.
by Fr. Michael E. Gaitley
Fr. Gaitley spends a week each on the Marian writings of four Saints: St. Louis de Montfort, St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. Mother Teresa, and St. John Paul the Great. Then the last five days are a synthesis of everything learned so far. Each day’s readings are no more than a few pages long. All in preparation for consecrating yourself to Jesus through Mary.
This is an immensely popular DIY retreat! Like everything though, it’s better with friends. That’s why I’m hosting a read-along group from May 22- June 24th on Facebook. I love these informal online book clubs. They are an excellent way to keep on track, get answers to questions, and engage with fellow Catholics.
By Fr. Mitch Pacwa
Father Mitch set up his book as a walk through Mary’s timeline in the Bible. He begins with the foreshadowing and promises of Mary (the new Eve) in the Old Testament. Then ends with her continued faithfulness and intercession, as a member of the body of Christ. You can read this individually or in a small group.
by Louis de Montfort
This book forms the Mariological foundation for “33 Days” above. It has inspired the devotion of countless saints through the centuries.
Most publications use the original and authoritative 1863 English translation. The language is sometimes challenging to follow. But St. Louis wanted his message to be received by farmers and miners as well as kings. St. Louis writes in such a clearly persuasive manner, you can almost hear the words aloud.
by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Tender and beautiful. The first part of the book, entitled “The woman the world loves,” chronologically covers Mary in the Bible. The second part, “The world the woman loves,” outlines our continued need for Mary’s example and prayers in the world today.
by Tim Staples
This is definitely a defense! If you feel unprepared for surprise debates others rope you into, then this is the book to study.
Tim Staples is a convert to Catholicism himself. He dismantles the common (and uncommon) objections others have to orthodox Marian doctrine.
by Raphael Brown
A reprint from the 1950s, this book draws on the private revelations of four mystics: St. Elizabeth of Schönau, St. Bridget of Sweden, Ven. Mary of Agreda, and Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich.
The author weaves them together into a chronological narrative of Mary’s life. It is intended to be “read as a religious novel, not a fifth Gospel,” as the foreword states.
The Church holds that public revelation ended with the death of the last apostle. When a mystic claims to have received visions or apparitions, their claims are tested against what is already known. Nothing can be added to the deposit of faith. These private revelations can greatly inspire true, pious devotion to God.