St. Bernard of Clairvaux gives a detailed litany of benefits of approaching Jesus through Mary.
While it is true that “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth” (Philippians 2:10), God also endowed upon the name of Mary a deep spiritual power.
Being the “queen mother,” Mary has a special role in salvation history and continues to come to the aid of God’s people whenever they call upon her. It is a great mystery, but countless saints have reinforced over the centuries that the closer one gets to Mary, the closer one is brought to her Son.
Pope Benedict XVI similarly promoted this reality and pointed to a quote from St. Bernard of Clairvaux when visiting Heiligenkreuz Abbey in Austria. The quote is a summary of Catholic belief when it comes to Marian intercession, and reassures us that whenever we invoke the name of Mary, we will be brought closer to Jesus.
In the words of Saint Bernard, I invite everyone to become a trusting child before Mary, even as the Son of God did. Saint Bernard says, and we say with him:
“Look to the star of the sea, call upon Mary … in danger, in distress, in doubt, think of Mary, call upon Mary.
May her name never be far from your lips, or far from your heart
If you follow her, you will not stray; if you pray to her, you will not despair;
if you turn your thoughts to her, you will not err.
If she holds you, you will not fall; if she protects you, you need not fear;
if she is your guide, you will not tire;
if she is gracious to you, you will surely reach your destination”.