The Three Hail Marys

Heaven Opened by the Practice of The Three Hail Marys!

Act of Consecration to Our Lady of the Blessed Trinity

With all my heart I praise thee, Most Holy Virgin above all angels and saints in paradise, beloved Daughter of the Eternal Father, and I consecrate to Thee my soul with all its faculties. [Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee! Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.]

With all my heart I praise thee, Most Holy Virgin above all angels and saints in paradise, beloved Mother of the Son of God. I consecrate to Thee my body with all its senses. [Hail Mary, etc.]

With all my heart I praise thee, Most Holy Virgin above all angels and saints in paradise, beloved Spouse of the Holy Ghost I consecrate to Thee my heart with all its affection, and beseech Thee to obtain for me from the Most Holy Trinity all the graces necessary for salvation. [Hail Mary, etc.]

Imprimatur: February 7, 1963 by Francis Cardinal Spellman, Archbishop of New York

* One of the greatest means of salvation, and one of the surest signs of predestination, is unquestionably, the devotion to the Most Blessed Virgin. All the holy doctors of the church are unanimous in saying with St. Alphonsus of Liguori: "A devout servant of Mary shall never perish."

The chief thing is to persevere faithfully till death in this devotion.

Can there be an easier or a more adaptable practice for all than the recitation each day of three Ave Marias in honour of the privileges conferred by the Adorable Trinity on the Blessed Virgin?

One of the first to say the three Ave Marias and to recommend them to others was the illustrious St. Anthony of Padua. His special aim in this practice was to honour the spotless Virginity of Mary and to preserve a perfect purity of mind, heart and body in the midst of the dangers of the world. Many, like him, have felt its salutary effects.

Later on, St. Leonard of Port-Maurice, the celebrated missionary, had the three Ave Marias recited morning and evening in honour of Mary Immaculate, to obtain the grace of avoiding all mortal sins during the day and night; moreover he promised in a special manner eternal salvation to all those who proved constantly faithful to this practice.

After the example of those two great Franciscan Saints, St. Alphonsus of Liguori adopted this pious practice and gave it his most ardent and powerful support. He counselled its use and even imposed it as a penance on those who had not adopted this good habit.

The holy Doctor exhorts, in particular, parents and confessors to watch carefully that children be faithful in reciting each day their three Ave Marias, morning and evening. Or rather, like St. Leonard of Port-Maurice, he earnestly recommends it to all, "to the devout and to sinners, to the young and the old."

Even persons commemorated to God will derive from this practice much precious and salutary fruit. Numerous examples may show how agreeable the three Ave Marias are to the Divine Mother and what special graces they draw, during life and at the hour of death, on those who never omit them for a single day.

This practice has been revealed to St. Melchtilde (XIIIth century) with the promise of a good death, if she was faithful to it, every day.

It is written, also, in St. Gertrude's revelations: "While this Saint sang the Hail Mary, at the matins of the Annunciation, she suddenly saw spring out of the Heart of the Father and the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, three bright flames which penetrated the heart of the Holy Virgin." Then she heard the following words: "After the Power of the Father, the wisdom of the Son, and the merciful Tenderness of the Holy Spirit, nothing approaches the Power, the Wisdom and the merciful tenderness of Mary."

His Holiness Benedict XV has raised the Confraternity of the Three Hail Marys to an Archconfraternity by according it precious indulgences with the power to aggregate to itself all Confraternities of the same kind, and to communicate them to is own indulgences.

Practice: Recite, morning and evening three Hail Marys in honour of the three great privileges, with this invocation at the end: for the morning: "O, my Mother, preserve me from mortal sin during this day"; and for the evening: "O, my Mother, preserve me from mortal sin during this night."

(Indulgence of 200 days granted by Leo XIII, 300 days for members of the Archconfraternity at the Three Hail Marys by Benedict XV, and Apostolic Benediction by Pius X.)

Editor's note: Although the Church has abolished the practice of quantifying indulgence with "days", such number of days can still be taken as the symbolic importance of this prayer.