"She was a virgin from a poor family in an obscure village in Galilee. Her responses to Gabriel reveals a young woman of unusual faith and humility. Her unqualified 'yes' to God's plan for her life entailed great personal risk and suffering. She must have endured seasons of confusion, fear, and darkness as the events of her life unfolded. She is honored, not only as the mother of Jesus, but as his first disciple" (Spengler 275).

The month of May is dedicated to Mary, mother of Jesus. Catholics honor her by offering days of prayer, song, and special events to give her name of Mary, mother of Jesus.

When I think of prayer I think of the Rosary. When I think of songs: On This Day Oh Beautiful Mother, Our Lady of Fatima, and Ave Maria (the Hail Mary.)

The Rosary consists of twenty mysteries mostly about the events in Jesus' and Mary's lives.

Since May is such a joyful time with events honoring Mary, and as an example, groups of young children making First Communion, the Joyful Mysteries are appropriate.

Mary, Mother of Jesus
Mary, Mother of Jesus

  1. The Annunciation
  2. The Visitation
  3. The Nativity
  4. The Presentation
  5. The Finding of Jesus in the Temple

Rather than explain each mystery, if necessary, I suggest you look them up in a Catholic source.

I have mention my familiarity with the rosary.

After our evening dinner and dish clean up, my mother made the family kneel and pray the Rosary. My little sister suggested it after the nuns at school talked of family Rosary. I was not a happy teenager.

When the weather is kind, I now pray the Rosary at the grotto on the St. Paul Monastery grounds.

The last days of my mother's life in the hospital, December 1989 through January 1990, she wanted someone with her at night. I drove to Iowa to do just that. The day I left Iowa, after spending seven nights with her, I said, "Mother, I am leaving to go back to Minnesota."

Her answer, while her hands were entwined in her Rosary was, "Don't bother me Karen. I am praying."

She passed away a few days later.


Spengler, A. & Syswerda J. (2015). Women of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Women in Scripture. Zondervan.

Mary, Mother of Jesus

Karen Fleming is a longtime companion and friend of
St. Paul’s Monastery and is a frequent contributor to
St. Paul’s Monastery communications.