"And when the Prince of the shepherds appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory." (I Peter 5:4)
As we enter the month of May, we remember that this is the month of Mary! We also remember the many May Crownings over the long years of my life. How wonderful it is when Catholics gather around an image or statue of Our Lady to proclaim her Our Queen, our Mother! In this crowning we are repeating in our own small way what Almighty God did for Mary when He crowned her as Queen of Heaven and Earth!
We know that God crowned Mary with justice. The giving of a crown is usually done in recognition of some deed or of some merit. We crown those who win victories. We crown those who have won success. In every way Mary merited great reward. Her whole life was spent in the service of God. What she said to the Angel, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word (St. Luke, 1:38), was the theme and object of her entire life -- the humble, loving service of the Almighty. Furthermore, Mary merited recognition from God by the fact that freely and out of pure love she consented to conceive and bring forth the Redeemer. In this way she gave the Savior to the world. God would recognize this obedience, this cooperation.
The crowning of Mary in heaven proves that God does reward every good deed. It is expressed for us by St. Paul:
"There is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord, the just Judge, will give to me in that day." (II Timothy 4:8).
God crowned Mary with power. King Solomon placed his mother on a throne beside himself, assuring her that he would grant her every request. Christ has placed His Blessed Mother on a throne beside Himself, assuring her of a share in His power. Jesus has power by the fact that He is God; Mary has power by the fact that she is the Mother of God. Only those who never honor Mary make the mistake of thinking that we honor her as a god or a goddess. We honor Mary because God honored her. We crown Mary because God crowned her.
The power with which God crowned her extends to this earth, to those struggling still along the pathway to heaven.
What a consolation, what an encouragement to know that we have a Queen who has received a share in the power of God Himself, power over things of sense, power over things of the spirit!
As we take part in the solemn crowning of Mary, let our hearts fly up to the heavenly throne and the heavenly Queen. The crown we place on Mary's head represents the justice and the glory and the power which Almighty God gave to the Mother of His Son. Oh, as we look at that crown, let it remind us of the justice of Almighty God. Let it remind us of the glory which God will give to those who serve Him. Let it remind us of the power which God has given to His Mother for our sake!
In the spirit of all the citizens of heaven and all Christians of all centuries, you and I who love our heavenly Queen, at the foot of her image, repeat our consecration to her Immaculate Heart: "We want you for our Queen and our Mother! We dedicate our lives for your holy cause upon the earth; the triumph of your Immaculate Heart and the reign of Christ in the hearts of all mankind!" Amen.