Saint Bernard de Clairvaux
“The Virgin’s name was Mary“, (Lk.1:27) which means ‘Star of the Sea.’ This admirably befits the Virgin Mother. …
She, I say, is that shining and brilliant star, needed so much, set in place above life’s great and spacious sea, glittering with merits, all aglow with examples for our imitation.
Oh, whosoever thou art that perceiveth thyself during this mortal existence to be rather drifting in treacherous waters at the mercy of the winds and the waves, than walking on firm ground, turn not away thine eyes from the splendour of this guiding star, unless thou wished to be submerged by the storm!
When the storms to temptation burst upon thee, when thou seest thyself driven upon the rocks of tribulation, look at the star, call upon Mary.
When buffeted by the billows of pride or ambition or hatred or jealousy, look at the star, call upon Mary. Should anger, or avarice, or fleshly desire violently assail the frail vessel of thy soul, look at the star, call upon Mary.
If troubled on account of the heinousness of thy sins, distressed at the filthy state of thy conscience, and terrified at the thought of the awful judgment to come, thou art beginning to sink into the bottomless gulf of sadness and to be swallowed in the abyss of despair, then think of Mary.
In dangers, in doubts, in difficulties, think of Mary, call upon Mary.
Let not her name leave thy lips, never suffer it to leave thy heart. And that thou mayest more surely obtain the assistance of her prayer, see that thou dost walk in her footsteps.
With her for guide, thou shalt never go astray; whilst invoking her, thou shalt never lose heart; so long as she is in thy mind, thou shalt not be deceived; whilst she holds thy hand, thou canst not fall; under her protection, thou hast nothing to fear; if she walks before thee, thou shalt not grow weary; if she shows thee favour, thou shalt reach the goal.
Thus thou shalt experience within thee the truth of these words: “The virgin’s name was Mary!”