Sunday, 24 March 2013

Our Lady Undoer of Knots

At the bottom of the laundry basket in the sacristy was a grubby, neglected cincture. I asked Father if he wanted me to wash it and give it some TLC, he enthusiastically gave me permission.  On getting it home I tried to untangle it only to find I was making the knotting worse.  There seemed to be much more complicating the tangling than the Roman Knot that the priest himself would have tied.  There is only one thing to do at times like this; pray to Our Lady Undoer of Knots.  Without a moment of hesitation, the cincture untied itself and placidly fell into my hands as a single rope.  I have many a tale of strengthening a priestly cuff or hem with bias and finding the thread I was using getting truly matted and argumentative.  Our Lady Undoer of Knots always comes to the rescue.

I am thrilled that the Holy Father is so fond of this devotion.  It is powerful because it is simple and also so profound.  It is more than just knotty threads and ropes that Our Lady sorts out.  It is a devotion to Our Lady; Bulwark Against Heresies.  It is a devotion of the love between Christ and His Church, in giving Her to us.  It is a devotion of true love between a man and a woman, united in Christ.  It is a devotion to Our Lady who undoes all the slithery, knotting and confusion wrought by the Serpent.  You can read the tale of this particular devotion here.  The image even alludes to the story of young Tobias and Sarah; what more could you want!
Of course there are times for proper knots; a properly tied cincture, the marriage knot, the tieing of the newly ordained priest's hands in the older rite and perhaps most importantly of all, the knot Our Lady ties in her removed mantle as she gives some dignity and modesty to Our Lord on the cross.

Pray to Our Lady Undoer of Knots for our priests this Palm Sunday, some seem a little weary, hassled and even grumpy. May the knots in their hearts be undone to that they can walk the path of Holy Week in all humility and obedience and be drawn with total submission into the Passion of God's Love.

Pray to Our Lady Undoer of Knots for ourselves, as we recollect our helplessness and befuddled, bewildered selves, so that we realise that by ourselves we cannot make sense of anything.  It is the Grace of God so often wrought through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother that undoes the knots in our thinking and loving, smooths out the creases and makes things new again.

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