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 | By Lolo CelinaMary Okpaleke

What Does it Mean to be Consecrated to Jesus through Mary?

April 24, 2023 | Bishop Gregory Parkes invites you to attend the fifth annual Diocese of St. Petersburg Marian Congress which will be held on Saturday, May 13, 2023, (Feast Day of Our Lady of Fatima) at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle. (Click here to learn more and to register.) At this event, the faithful are invited to be consecrated or renew their consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Lolo CelinaMary Okpaleke, a graduate of the Diocese of St. Petersburg’s Lay Pastoral Ministry Institute offers a reflection on what consecration means and how to be consecrated to Jesus through Mary. 

What is consecration?

Consecration means “to make holy” and to be set apart for God, that is a total surrender to the Will of God. When one makes an act of consecration, it is made ultimately to God with the understanding that our consecration is a serious commitment on our part to respond faithfully to God’s grace at work in our lives.

When consecrating ourselves to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we are consecrating ourselves to Jesus through Mary. As Saint Pope John Paul II explained, “Consecrating ourselves to Mary means accepting her help to offer ourselves and the whole of mankind to Him who is holy, infinitely holy; it means accepting her help by having recourse to her motherly heart, which beneath the Cross was opened to love for every human being, for the whole world in order to offer the world, the individual human being, mankind as a whole, and all the nations to Him who is infinitely holy” (May 13, 1982).

Why do we go through Mary to Jesus Christ in this act of consecration?

Because Jesus fully revealed Mary’s special role shortly before his death. It happened when he looked down from the Cross and said to Mary as she stood with the Apostle John, “Woman, behold your son,” and to John, “Behold your mother” (John 19:26-27). At that moment, Jesus gave us one of his greatest gifts: his mother as our mother. We know Mary is not our natural mother. She is our spiritual mother. In other words, just as it was once her task to give birth to Christ, to feed and nurture him, and to help him grow and develop as a man, so also, from the time she first said yes to being the mother of Jesus until eternity, Mary’s vocation is to foster a spiritual awakening in Christians, to feed and nurture them with grace, and to help them grow to full stature in Christ. As a matter of fact, Mary’s mission is to help us grow in holiness, to form us into saints according to St. Louis Marie De Montfort.

What happens after consecration?

To consecrate oneself and to do nothing else is not enough; rather Marian Consecration is a way of starting afresh on the journey of holiness.  Our Blessed Mother didn’t go to sleep after she said YES to be the Mother of God. I believe that a consecration without action towards holiness is dead just like faith without action or works is dead. To live out the life of consecration and allow Mary to lead us to her Son, Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and Life is a means of accepting Jesus’ pledge of eternal life. The journey to holiness and to heaven is not an easy road. That is why Jesus said that it is a narrow road. It’s easier for a camel to go through the needle’s eye than a rich man to go to heaven.

Therefore, we need our Blessed Mother who knows the way to the Heart of her Son Jesus Christ. St. Louis Marie De Montfort said that following, "Mary’s guidance is the surest, easiest, and fastest way to heaven.  She is the New Ark, daughter of God the Father, Mother of God the Son, Spouse of God the Holy Spirit, our best intercessor."

The secret I found in this journey of holiness —to fall in love with Jesus Christ —is to ask God for the grace to “desire” to know his Mother. The more we desire, the more she opens our hearts to be filled with the love of God and the more we are connected to her Immaculate Heart which is connected to the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ. When we begin to fall in love with Mary, we are led to be cautious about what we do or say, where we go, our thoughts, our actions and so on and so forth. We begin to feel an unexplainable joy and peace within us. That means that we have really allowed her to take us through her school of holiness which provides ongoing wisdom for life. The purpose of Mary’s way is to keep drawing souls closer to her Son Jesus Christ. The more we know her, the more we know her Son. The more we are closer to her, the more we are closer to her Son, the more we love her, the more we love her Son. Mary and Jesus have hearts that are inseparable, hearts of love. It’s a fulfilling joy to build a relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ. If consecration to Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary does not help one to love Jesus more, one should revisit the process and seek greater guidance.

How does One undertake a Marian Consecration?

  • It requires a “retreat” of sorts which consists of 33 Days of prayerful preparation leading up to one of Catholic Church’s recognized Marian feasts.

  • One can prepare for a consecration individually, as a group or as a family.

  • There are many books that lead one through the 33 days of preparation for a Marian Consecration. Whichever one you choose, apply yourself to its program and ask for the grace to engage in the Marian  Consecration with your whole heart.

Is consecration a one-time event?


No, Marian Consecration entails a yearly renewal, preferably on the same Marian Feast day as your first consecration. You can renew your consecration as often as you want. There is also a daily re-consecration prayer that can constantly remind you and draw you to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.


Other Suggestions to live out life after consecration:

  • Pray the Rosary each day.

  • Visit the Blessed Sacrament

  • Attend Daily Mass, if possible.

  • Go to confession as often as needed.

  • Wear your Scapular as a constant reminder of your commitment as it is wearing a garment of Mary, a means of identification with Mary, if I may say.

  • Practice one of the virtues of our Blessed Mother daily.

  • Recommit yourself to the Will of God daily.

  • Ask for a soul to help daily.

  • Consider yourself a possession of the Blessed Virgin Mary and allow yourself to be used by her as she pleases.

Information about the upcoming local Marian Congress and Consecration:

The theme of this year's Marian Congress is "Mary and the Eucharist.” The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith, and we encounter the Risen Christ each time we receive our Lord in Holy Communion. Our Blessed Mother has a special role in leading us to her Son, in the Eucharist. This day of joy, renewal, and prayer will include dynamic speakers, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, a multicultural Rosary, and Mass with Bishop Gregory Parkes.

Visit to learn more.



Lolo Celina Mary Okpaleke, PA, BSMed, BSMT, is a graduate of the Diocese of St. Petersburg’s Lay Pastoral Ministry Institute.