Thanks to the Tiber River review program, I've been able to review Following Mary to Jesus by Andrew Apostoli, CFR. This is a short, easy to read volume filled with "prayable" thoughts. Apostoli's basic thesis is that Mary leads us to Jesus and he explains how in this book, which is divided into three main sections.
Part one shows Mary as our mother, who brings life to her children. It describes her as the spouse of the Holy Spirit and then talks about how she is the new Eve. It ends with sections on how Mary brings Jesus to us, obtains faith for us, consoles us, prays for us, makes us the family of Christ and reveals herself to us. Something that struck me in this section was about the wedding at Cana. Because of Mary's intercession, Jesus performed a miracle which produced life-giving faith in his disciples.
Part two shows Mary as our teacher and tells us how we can learn from her to trust God. It points out that fear is the biggest enemy of trust--that we are afraid that if we give control to God He will ask more than we are capable of giving. One thought that struck me is that Mary wasn't among the women who went to anoint Jesus' body Easter morning; she trusted His word that He would rise.
The role of Mary as our advocate, preparing our hearts for God's mercy, is the subject of part three. Apostoli points out that God desires to show us mercy and that Mary helps us ask for that mercy. The chapter includes a call to conversion and reminder to frequently use the Sacrament of Reconciliation. It is pointed out that Mary helps us be merciful and helps us trust in God's mercy.
I enjoyed this book. It is one of those that can be read quickly for an overall impression or read in short pieces as an aid to meditation or other prayer. The 117 pages are divided into three parts, with a total of nine chapters. The longer chapters have sub-parts, so that there are a lot of logical dividers for those who want to savor the book a little at a time or pray about the ideas presented therein. I'd recommend the book to anyone who is trying to figure out why she or he should have a devotion to the Blessed Mother.