PRAYER ON THE PRESENTATION OF MARY
O beloved Mother of God,
most amiable child Mary,
O that, as thou didst present thyself in the temple,
and with promptitude and without reserve,
didst consecrate thyself to the glory and love of God,
I could offer thee, this day,
the first years of my life,
to devote myself without reserve to thy service,
my holy and most sweet Lady!
But it is now too late to do this;
for, unfortunate creature that I am,
I have lost so many years in the service of the world and my own caprices,
and have lived in almost entire forgetfulness of thee and of God:
Woe to that time in which I did not love thee!
("Vae tempori illi, in quo non amavi te!")
But it is better to begin late than not at all.
Behold, O Mary,
I this day present myself to thee,
and I offer myself without reserve to thy service
for the long or short time that I still have to live in this world;
and in union with thee I renounce all creatures,
and devote myself entirely to the love of my Creator.
I consecrate my mind to thee,
that it may always think of the love that thou deserves,
my tongue to praise thee,
my heart to love thee.
Do thou accept,
O most holy Virgin,
the offering which this miserable sinner now makes thee;
accept it, I beseech thee,
by the consolation that thy heart experienced when thou gavest thyself to God in the temple.
But since I enter thy service late,
it is reasonable that I should redouble my acts of homage and love,
thereby to compensate for lost time.
Do thou help my weakness with thy powerful intercession,
O Mother of Mercy,
by obtaining me perseverance from thy Jesus,
and strength to be always faithful to thee until death;
that thus always serving thee in life,
I may praise thee in Paradise for all eternity.