Imitating Mary’s 9 Amazing Virtues
Here are the 9 Virtues of Mary:
- Ardent charity
- Blind obedience
- Constant mental prayer
- Divine wisdom
- Heroic patience
- Lively faith
- Profound humility
- Surpassing purity
- Universal mortification
Indeed, Mary’s virtues may seem overpowering to us, but don’t panic. They’re not as overwhelming as they may seem. In this article, I will list out each of Mary’s virtues and list practical ways in which we can live by them in our daily lives.
1. Ardent Charity
- Meaning: Ardent – characterized by warmth of feeling or passion. Charity – the theological virtue by which we love God above all things for His sake.
- How Mary demonstrated Ardent Charity: Everything that Mary did for those around her was done out of love for the Lord.
- How to practice this virtue: Be like the Blessed Mother and take on the disposition of love for those around you by bringing Jesus to them, the true and perfect Lover.
2. Blind Obedience
- Meaning: Blind — Fully believing in God’s plan for our lives, even when we don’t fully understand it, acknowledging that He is Truth itself. Obedience— Obeying His commands as given by Holy Mother Church.
- How Mary demonstrated Blind Obedience: Mary was able to confidently give her fiat at the moment of the Annunciation, and also in every situation after that.
- How we can live out this virtue: We can believe and trust that God’s plan for us is good and loving. This is really hard, especially at times when life is not certain, but you are not alone in the turmoil. He is right there with you.
3. Constant Mental Prayer
- Meaning: In the words of Saint Mother Teresa: “Mental prayer is the essence of life for our soul and holiness is impossible without it.” It doesn’t mean praying in the chapel all day, but simply loving God and others in every little act we do.
- How Mary demonstrated Constant Mental Prayer: Mary’s entire life was a prayer, due to her constantly placing herself in the presence of the Lord, every moment of her life.
- How we can live out this virtue: Praise God. Have time for silence, for thanking Him, and for inquiring assistance to accomplish His Will. Bring Christ into every little thing, offering up all your thoughts, words, actions, joys, and sorrows.
4. Divine Wisdom
- Meaning: Divine – Coming from God. Wisdom: Knowledge of what is true and right, and has excellent judgment.
- How Mary demonstrated Divine Wisdom: Mary was able to see the beauty of God’s will in every moment. She didn’t run to others first; she always conversed with the Lord first, so that she could embrace His Will.
- How we abide by this virtue: Ask the Holy Spirit for the wisdom to see things through the eyes of Christ and not your own. Ask Our Lady, Seat of Wisdom, to pray for you!
5. Heroic Patience
- Meaning: Heroic — Acknowledging that God is Lord, no matter what difficulties are faced. Patience — Quiet perseverance and peaceful waiting, as you abide in His love and wait for Him to reveal His will when the time is right.
- How Mary demonstrated Heroic Patience: Mary gave her fiat, her “yes” to Christ. Mary’s patience culminated at the foot of her Son’s cross, where she truly became a martyr through her patient and finish suffering in union with Christ.
- How we can live out this virtue: Unite your sufferings with the pains of Our Lord and Our Lady of Sorrows. Pray for the gift of perseverance and establish silence in your life and in your heart.
6. Lively Faith
- Meaning: Lively – Full of life and spirited. Faith – When man totally submits his whole being to God, including his intellect and his will.
- How Mary demonstrated Lively Faith: Mary totally submitted herself to God in an energetic way. She joyfully gave herself to the Lord.
- How we can live out this virtue: Faith is a gift from God! To receive a gift, we must be in communion with the Giver. Decide to trust Him and practice receiving His gifts with humble, open palms.
7. Profound Humility
- Meaning: Profound – Penetrating or going deeply into subjects of thought or knowledge. Humility – Free from pride and arrogance; lowliness of mind.
- How Mary demonstrated Profound Humility: Mary perfectly conformed herself to God’s Will. She saw herself as God saw her: nothing more, nothing less.
- How we can live out this virtue: See yourself as God sees you! Pray the Litany of Humility, accept compliments gracefully and quietly, and don’t be disappointed to have made mistakes in front of others.
8. Surpassing Purity
- Meaning: Surpassing – More than what is typical in magnitude or degree. Purity – The state of being free from sin; oneness of heart and mind in desiring God.
- How Mary demonstrated Surpassing Purity: Everything in Mary was of God. Her mind and heart were pure. She lived her life with the unity of purpose, seeking only to love and honor with all her heart, all her mind, and all her soul.
- How we can live out this virtue: Live a life full of prayer and frequent the Sacraments. Work hard to keep your mind pure and focused on heavenly things rather than things of this world.
9. Universal Mortification
- Meaning: Universal – All-encompassing, applicable everywhere. Mortification – Dying to yourself and your own will.
- How Mary demonstrated Universal Mortification: Mary died to herself from the moment she said, “Not my will but Yours be done.” She continued this throughout her entire life, constantly dying to herself and totally uniting herself to her Son.
- How we can live out this virtue: Make sacrifices and offer them up for the greater good of someone else. Prepare yourself in little daily events, such as getting right away when the alarm goes off and not hitting the snooze button!
Mary’s 9 virtues are impressive to reflect on but don’t feel downcasted. The key to defeating any task is to start small. Try choosing one virtue each week, month, or year to intentionally focus on and practice emulating.