Sister Rose: Her Life and Her Work and The Mass of Reparation
Publication Date: September 5, 2021
God uses the most unlikely people in mysterious ways. Madeleine Mirabal was born into a poor family in 19th century Paris. She suffered throughout her whole life. Despite not being raised in the Catholic Faith, she found God and step by step surrendered herself to His love, coming to realise that the very heart and essence of the Catholic Faith is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. It was to her that God gave the inspiration for the devotion of the Mass of Reparation. Saddened by the absence of many Catholics from Holy Mass, she formed the habit of hearing extra Masses for those who were negligent. Her aim was primarily to render glory to God by making reparation on behalf of those Catholics who for some reason did not go to Mass, or who had lapsed in their faith, thereby neglecting their duty of giving God the praise and honour they owed him as their Creator and loving Father. Others soon followed her example. This was the beginning of the devotion known as the "Mass of Reparation."
For ten years Madeleine Mirabal quietly pursued her work of pure love and reparation, whilst living a life of strict penance and mortification. In 1871, at the age of sixty years, she entered the newly-founded convent of Norbertine Canonesses at Bonlieu, France, as a humble lay sister. After having suffered a miserable childhood, abject poverty, an unhappy marriage to an abusive husband and the death of several infant children, Sister Rose, as she was now known, was to spend the last twelve years of her life offering her very self for the salvation of souls amidst the suffering, mortification, and peaceful joys of convent life.
After her holy death, the devotion so dear to her flourished and was approved by the Church, and was propagated especially by the Norbertine Order. It grew into the Archconfraternity of the Mass of Reparation, which became the source of great graces and the conversion of many souls. At its zenith it counted millions of members worldwide, but it unfortunately declined after the Second Vatican Council.
It is hoped that in this 900th Jubilee Year of the founding of the Order of Prémontré, this simple book may stimulate interest in the life of the humble, holy Sister Rose. May it help propagate knowledge about the Mass of Reparation at a time when many Catholics are neglecting their religious duties, and may it deepen our love and devotion towards the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and Our Lord's True Presence in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.