Your home is your refuge and the center of family life. You now want it to be your personal sanctuary for prayer and meditation. Honoring Mary, the Mother of Christ, is a great way to create sacred space in your home. Devotionals encourage prayer and invite blessings for your home and family. If you want to honor Mary in your home, begin with a Marian shrine to express your devotion. There are many ways to build a home shrine to Mary, the Blessed Mother.
Things You'll Need
- Mary statue
- Mary icon
- Prayer cards
- Candle holders
- Saint medals
Pick an area in your home for the shrine. A shrine can be any size from a tiny corner table to an entire room. Decide how much of your home to dedicate to the shrine and its function. Are you placing the shrine in a home chapel? Do you want a small tribute to Mary that can quietly fit into the rest of the room decor? Most people create small intimate shrines that can be placed on a table. These shrines are unobtrusive because they can blend in with the rest of the home decor in any room of the house. The family can take solace from noticing it as they perform their daily tasks. The shrine is easily accessible whenever the family wants to pray and read the Bible. If you want more privacy, you can designate a special room for the shrine. You can make the shrine more personal and elaborate without worrying about how it fits into the rest of the room. Make certain your shrine is easy to access. You don't want to move furniture or clutter every time you need to pray at the shrine.
Select an image of Mary.To help you mediate on the Blessed Mother, pick something to represent Mary. Statues or icons are traditionally used for shrines. You can find a variety of beautiful statues and icons on-line and at Catholic stores. When you choose your Mary figure, pick one that has special meaning to you. Spend some time searching for the Mary figure until you find one that inspires prayer in your heart.
Decide how you will display the Mary statue or icon. You will need a stand for an icon. Statues can stand alone or on a pedestal. Icon stands and pedestals can usually be found at Catholic stores.
Design the Mary shrine. Will it be simple or ornate? Do you prefer a modern or traditional look? You can design your shrine any way you choose. It should be meaningful to you. Some ideas include spreading a beautiful cloth under the Mary statue or icon or keep your rosary by the statue for prayers. Have your Bible close by for study and reflection. Select a special candle or two for meditation.
Personalize your Mary shrine. You can include special items such as a favorite cross, family patron saint medals or saint prayer cards to assist your prayers. If you are petitioning Mary to pray for a loved one, keep his photo near the shrine. An icon of Jesus or the Madonna and Child may also inspire your prayers.
Decorate the shrine with Mary's flowers. Mary's main flowers are the rose, lily and violet. Roses symbolize Mary's glory, lilies represent her purity, and violets are symbols of her humility. Other flowers associated with Mary are columbine, juniper, ox-eye daisies, fleur-de-lis and lilies of the valley. If you can not find these flowers fresh, get silk ones.
Place a prayer box in the shrine. Prayer boxes are wonderful additions to a Mary shrine. Buy a special box or make one. You and your family can write private prayers on small pieces of paper and put them in the prayer box.
Make your shrine comfortable. Decide how you prefer to pray at the shrine. Do you prefer to kneel on cushions or sit in a chair or on a bench? You should be able to relax and reflect at your shrine. Make the shrine your sacred space.
Tips & Warnings
- If you do not want a traditional image of Mary for your shrine, choose another meditation tool that helps you focus on the Blessed Mother. Some people prefer to use beautiful rocks, a special candle, a lovely cross, or plant as the centerpiece of their shrines. Choose the item that inspires your prayers.
- Have your priest bless your home shrine.
- Create a Mary garden in your yard.
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