DAY 3: PRESENTATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

33 DAYS PREPARATORY PRAYER FOR THE RE-CONSECRATION OF NIGERIA TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY.

DAY 3
(September 10).
PRESENTATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY.

V. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

V. Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of the faithful.
R. And enkindle in them the fire of your love.
V. Send forth your spirit and they shall be created.
R. And you shall renew the face of the earth.

Let us pray: Oh God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever rejoice in his consolation, through Chris our Lord. Amen.

HYMN TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY.
1. O come to the throne of grace,
O come to the heart most pure!
To Mary, our hope of life,
In whom salvation is sure.

O Lady of Fatima, hail!
Immaculate Mother of grace;
O, pray for us, help us today,
Thou hope of the human race!

2. Immaculate Heart! we kneel
To consecrate all to thee:
The present, its pain and joy—–
The future, all it may be.

O Lady of Fatima, hail!
Immaculate Mother of grace;
O, pray for us, help us today,
Thou hope of the human race!

OPENING PRAYER.
Almighty and ever living God, we honour the memory of the Blessed Virgin Mary, whose hidden life brings light and warmth to the Church in every place. Her presentation in the temple at Jerusalem reveals her as a temple where God truly lives among us. May Mary’s example give us the strength to radiate that light and warmth in the Church, and help us to be dwelling places of God’s joyful presence on earth. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen

ROSARY

SCRIPTURE READING: Zachariah 2:14-17
Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion! For behold, I am coming and I will dwell in your midst, says the Lord. Many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and they shall become My people. And I will dwell in your midst. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you. And the Lord will take possession of Judah as His inheritance in the Holy Land, and will again choose Jerusalem. Be silent, all flesh, before the Lord, for He is aroused from His holy habitation!

REFLECTION:
The symbol of the daughter of Zion is the symbol of unity. That term is sometimes used to describe the people of God or the Church. It also says a lot about what our Blessed Mother Mary through whom God initiated the process of reconciling us back to himself after we have wandered away. Two days ago, we celebrated and reflected on the nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Today, we are called to reflect on her presentation in the temple while focusing on Zech 2:14-17. Most of the stories we have about that presentation were from extrabiblical sources especially the Protoevangelium of James otherwise known as the Infancy Gospel of James. The summary of the story is that Mary was consecrated to God by her parents after her birth. After that consecration, she remained entirely for God and brought joy to the world by giving birth to Christ and helping him in his work of redemption. We too, who have been baptised and presented to God, are called to move away from being nominal Christians to active discipleship like Mary. As we do so, may our life and expression of faith bring joy to all who shall encounter us in life. Amen

INTERCESSORY PRAYER:
a. For our families.
b. For the Church.
c. For Nigeria.

PRE-CONSECRATION PRAYER OF NIGERIA TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY

Lord God, we thank you for the gift of our country Nigeria. You made it a fertile ground for the work of missionaries, guided by the power of the Holy Spirit. Your Word is now firmly established in our land such that we have not only become missionaries to ourselves but also to other nations.

As your Son Jesus Christ reposed in the arms of the Blessed Virgin Mary, so have we reposed Nigeria in her arms by making her our Patron Saint. As a nation, we are going through turbulent moments, with hunger, pain, killing, kidnapping and many other atrocities being committed against each other. We believe that never was it known that anyone who fled to her protection, implored her help or sought her intercession was left unaided. And so we come before her again, sinful and sorrowful, and desiring to re-consecrate Nigeria to her Immaculate Heart. May she intercede on our behalf to stabilize our ship of state.

We present ourselves as a nation, renouncing our past faults and offences. We resolve to imitate the exemplary life of our Mother Mary. Help us to renew and rectify the vows of our Baptism; rejecting Satan and all his works and empty promises. Obtain for us the grace for a perfect consecration of our nation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We seek her continual intercession and maternal protection.

May this this re-consecration bring forth peace, unity and tranquility to the nation and foster communion and service so as to radiate the joy of the Gospel for the common good of our country.

We make our prayer through your son, our Lord Jesus Christ who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen

Our Lady Queen of Nigeria, Pray for us.
Our Lady of Fatima, Pray for us.

CONCLUDING PRAYER
All powerful and ever living God, you raised the sinless Virgin Mary, mother of your Son, body and soul to the glory of heaven. May we see heaven as our final goal and come to share her glory. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, One God forever and ever. Amen.

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