“Subtle Snare of the Evil One”
There are those who imagine they are slighting the Son by honoring the Mother. They fear that by exalting Mary they are belittling Jesus. They cannot bear to see people giving to Our Lady the praises due to her and which the Fathers of the Church have lavished upon her.
It annoys them to see more people kneeling before Mary's alter than before the Blessed Sacrament, as if these acts were at variance with each other, or as if those who were praying to Our Lady were not praying through her to Jesus. They do not want us to speak too often of her or to pray so often to her.
Here are some of the things they say: "What is the good of all these Rosaries, confraternities and exterior devotions to Our Lady? There is a great deal of ignorance in all this. It is making a mockery of religion. Tell us about those who are devoted to Jesus. We should go directly to Jesus, since He is our sole Mediator. We must preach Jesus; that is sound devotion." There is some truth in what they say, but the inference they draw to prevent devotion to Our Lady is very insidious. It is a subtle snare of the evil one under the pretext of promoting a greater good. For we never give more honor to Jesus than when we honor His Mother, and we honor her simply and solely to honor Him all the more perfectly. We go to her only as a way leading to the goal we seek - Jesus, her Son.
The Church, with the Holy Spirit, blesses Our Lady first, then Jesus, "Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus." Not that Mary is greater than Jesus, or even equal to Him -- that would be an intolerable heresy. But in order to bless Jesus more perfectly we should first bless Mary. Let us say with all those truly devoted to her, despite these false and scrupulous devotees: "O Mary, blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus."
Saint Louis de Montfort