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Janis Clarke

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Our Lady of Littleness and the fight to end abortion

Janis Clarke

July 16, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — If you were God, how would you respond to the crisis in the Church and the world today? God’s response to crises is utterly counterintuitive. He sends His mother to little ones, she urges them to pray and do penance for souls, and big things happen. The Holy Spirit comes in power. People are miraculously healed. Millions receive the gift of repentance and conversion. He scatters the proud in the conceit of their hearts and lifts up the lowly — through his little mother.

The scourge of abortion and euthanasia that is threatening all of humanity and targeting the weakest and most vulnerable among us is unprecedented in its scope and power. It is reaching out to grab us and our families in the places where we live. While praying at a late-term abortion clinic in my neighborhood one day, I perceived interiorly an image of a huge octopus hovering over the building, with deadly tentacles stretching out as far as the eye could see. I sensed the Lord saying, “This is a spiritual battle.” And He showed me how to fight in the power of the Holy Spirit. The sidewalk counselors had left for the day because the mothers seeking abortions were all inside the clinic. I stepped out in faith and approached an SUV in the parking lot, began singing to the children inside, and invited their caretaker to pray with me for their mom. The joyful response of those precious children together with our prayers completely transformed the atmosphere. It bolstered my faith that God would act. And before long, the mother of these very children, 29 weeks pregnant, walked out of the clinic! With an open heart, she received prayer for herself and her unborn baby and gladly accepted information on where to turn for help. She had come the week before and left after speaking to the counselors. This time, she left and never returned.

On another occasion, I organized an event in Washington, D.C., for children and the elderly to unite in prayer with Little Sisters of the Poor for the sisters’ upcoming Supreme Court case. Many people had been praying and working long and hard for the sisters, who had gone to court to avoid being forced to cover abortion-inducing drugs and devices in their health insurance plans. Within a week of the “youth and aged” Rosary Hour, the Supreme Court issued a ruling favorable to the sisters.

Inspired by the prayers of little ones to help get things over the finish line, I founded “Youth and Aged for Life” with the Little Sisters. While introducing this new initiative in homes for the elderly, I met some special needs children who had come to pray with the residents. As they entered the room, I experienced what I can describe only as a visit from “Our Lady of Littleness.” She visited me through these children, through the little ones. The experience was so profound that I immediately began to weep. The littleness of Our Lady was beyond anything I had imagined: so vulnerable, joyful, and disarming. It exposed all my lack of littleness: my self-concern, pride, and hardness of heart. But in that moment, I understood that no matter how much I hurt her and her Son, she would never draw back. She would only come closer, with the sweetest smile that just broke my heart. It struck me that the hardest heart could not resist such disarming love and lowliness — Our Lady of Littleness, coming to rescue us in this time of great crisis, through the little ones.

After that encounter, I sensed the Lord calling me to commission a painting and prayer for a holy card dedicated to Our Lady of Littleness. In the painting she is gazing on wildflowers gathered in her veil which represent the little ones, who also form her crown. The Holy Spirit hovers above, drawn by her lowliness. Our Lady of Littleness helps us receive the little ones whom Jesus sends in a way that draws the Holy Spirit and helps us become little, to prepare us for heaven (Mt. 18:3).

While leading a mission at an elementary school in Calgary, I sensed that the Lord wanted us to hand out a rosary along with the holy card of Our Lady of Littleness to every student and teacher attending the final rosary event. There were over four hundred students, plus adults, and we had approximately 275 rosaries. It was too late to obtain more, so I placed a holy card on one of the rosaries and asked the Lord to provide through Our Lady of Littleness. After the singing rosary, every student and adult received a rosary with their holy card, with enough left over for a class that was not able to attend.

Here below is the little prayer poem on the holy card, which was inspired on the Feast of the Holy Innocents. What a merciful God we serve, sending His lowly mother through the little ones to rescue us. For more information on Our Lady of Littleness, go to www.rosarymission.org

Our  Lady of Littleness

How can it be that one so small
Could be the mother of us all,
God’s mother, and my mother too?
O Mary, there is none like you.

My simple words cannot express
The mystery of your lowliness.
God chose you for His humble home.
Your arms of love, His little throne.

’Twas your profound humility
That drew the Holy Trinity
Into your frail humanity
That all might know divinity.

The Father gazed on you with love,
The Spirit leapt from heav’n above,
And God became your little Son,
In lowliness, salvation won!

Please help me to be more like you
That I might draw the Spirit too
As I receive your risen Son
In each and every little one.

And help me to be smaller still,
In everything, the Father’s will!
In Jesus’ name, with you I pray,
“Come, Holy Spirit, have your way!”

Imprimatur: +Christian Lépine – Archbishop of Montreal – January 6, 2018

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