As with many 'modern changes' to classic prayers/devotion's this TOTALLY misses the mark in the preparation for a consecration to Our Blessed Mother. St. Louis DeMonfort's preparation is steeped in Scripture and prayer to Our Blessed Lord and His mother Mary ... Fr. Gaitley's preparation is built on people ... individuals who had a great devotion to Mary ... with minimal prayer involved ... and no formal prayer at all. The books reflections would be ok as an addendum to the daily reading and prayers of DeMonfort's work, but as a stand alone preparation its lacking. After the 2nd week I reevaluated my progress, reset my day for Consecration, and began my preparation again using the True Devotion To Mary. There is no short cut here ... You must go through the crucible. The 1 star is for the prayers at the end of the book.
Father Michael has done an amazing job with this book and it is partly because the Holy Spirit guided him in completing this book. If you find Consecration with Louis de Montfort a bit dry and too theological, this is the best alternative! We have also bought DVD with Father Mike's talk for each of your weeks reading. If you are truly committed to Consecrating yourself to Jesus through Mary, this book is definitely the best resource to prepare you for the new Glorious Morning that will come after your Consecration. I have experienced divine peace of knowing that Mary is always by my side guiding and leading me on the right path towards heaven, giving Her protection against satan and his temptations - I have found victory over one addiction that has been hunting me down for all my life and I know that it is Mary's help since She wants me to be a clean temple of the Holy Spirit and have a pure heart so that Jesus may rest in it.
I really liked the layout of the book. Because I work in the evening and homeschool my kids in the morning I have very little free time. This book allowed me to read the section for each day in the morning so at any time throughout the rest of the day I could think more about it. Though each days reading is short it is meaty enough to dwell on throughout the day.
I didn't honestly expect to feel any different after completing the consecration but I do have a greater sense of peace. It is one of those things you have to experience for yourself to fully appreciate.
I consider myself a devout Catholic, and have done the St. Louis de Montfort 33 Day Consecration many years ago using the classic de Montfort spiritual writings. This book is able to be used in class form or privately. My husband and I did it as part of a class at our parish. We were greatly edified and uplifted. The daily meditations, readings and prayers are rich with the writings of the four saints used for this book: St. Louis de Montfort, St. Teresa of Calcutta, St. John Paul II, and St. Maximilian Kolbe. I learned a lot of fascinating things about each of these saints lives that I did not know.
A note: be sure to buy the companion workbook that goes with it. It's pricey, but my class didn't use it for everyone, only the teachers. When it was my week to teach (each of us took one of the four weeks) I realized that the whole experience would have been much richer and spiritually deeper if all the class members had worked through the workbook and meditated on the exercises in the workbook.
33 Days to Morning Glory is the best hands-on book for Marian Consecration available today! Michael Gaitley presents in a way that is practical, insightful and efficient. It is excellent for anyone who does not have a lot of time, yet still desires to grow spiritually. In a mere 2-3 pages a day, the spiritual firepower of Blessed Mother Teresa, Blessed John Paul II, St. Maximilian Kolbe, and the remarkable St. Louis de Montfort is unveiled in a manner that is powerful, personal and straightforward for adults and teens alike. Whatever the age of the reader, this retreat is a great place to grow closer to Jesus through his devoted mother Mary. Mary's last words in the Gospel at the wedding feast of Cana seem fitting:
1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2 Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine ran short, the mother of Jesus said to him, "They have no wine." 4 [And] Jesus said to her, "Woman, how does your concern affect me? My hour has not yet come." 5 His mother said to the servers, "Do whatever he tells you."
Mary desires lead us to Jesus today, just as she wished to lead us to her son almost two thousand years ago. At Cana, she was concerned with helping out the wedding couple by interceding with Jesus. Jesus granted his mother's request, even though his 'hour' had not come. Mary is just as concerned with interceding for each of us with her son today. Imagine the great things Jesus could to do in our lives if we took Mary's advice, as the servers did, and did whatever he told us.
Similar to Gaitley's "Consoling the Heat of Jesus," which enjoys a perfect five-star rating on each and every one of its 31 customer reviews at Amazon.com at the time of this post, the appendices are phenomenal in this book! They provide excellent information on Marian prayers & devotions. I hope you get the opportunity to discover this treasure!
Thanks for reading.
Note: The Gospel of John, Chapter 2, was retrieved from the USCCB website