THE return of May, when nature, awakened from her winter sleep, is clad in all her vernal beauty, reminds us that all should be fair and bright within us also, that our hearts ought to be adorned with fair virtues, so as to be pleasing to Jesus and Mary. Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, frequent meditation on her life and contemplation of her example, earnest endeavor to imitate her virtues — these are all excellent means of sanctifying the soul and of advancing in the love of God. And since the May devotions are intended to attain this laudable end, since they are commended to us by holy Church and enriched with indulgences, it especially behooves us, who are the adopted children of Mary and her devoted clients, to perform these exercises with a willing heart and in the spirit of piety. The following suggestions will serve as your guide.
1. If possible, receive the sacraments at the beginning of the month of May, in order that the meditations and devotions may bear more abundant fruit in your soul.
2. The chapters in the fore part and at the end of this book will furnish you with suitable matter for meditation and spiritual reading; to this you may add the Litany of Loreto and other prayers to the Blessed Virgin.
3. As your principal object propose to yourself to combat and thoroughly master some fault or bad habit, and to acquire the opposite virtue.
4. Every morning offer up your actions to Jesus and Mary, and endeavor earnestly to model your whole conduct by the example of the Blessed Virgin.
5. If you can manage to hear Mass daily, see that you do so; and if the May devotions are not held in public, perform them by yourself, either in church before the shrine of Our Lady, or at home before your own little altar of the Blessed Virgin.
6. Recite the Rosary frequently.
7. Finally, do your best to promote devotion to our blessed Lady amongst those with whom you come into contact.