A sinister snake is no match for a sequence of Hail Marys
St. John Bosco was a priest whose intense spiritual life was marked by visions or “dreams”, as he called them. D. Bosco wrote about one of them in a letter to his students.
The dream occurred on the eve of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and in it a stranger approached and asked him to look at something on the ground.
” He led me into a meadow beside the playground and pointed to an immense, ugly snake, over twenty feet long, wrapped in grass. Frightened, I wanted to run away, but the stranger held me. ‘Come closer and take a good look,’ he said.
‘What?’. I choked. ‘Do not you realize the monster can jump on me and swallow me in a little while?’
‘Have no fear! Nothing will happen. Just come with me. ‘”
The stranger then took a rope and asked St. John Bosco to hit her on the snake.
“We stretched the rope and then hit the serpent’s back. The monster immediately stood up and struggled against the rope, but in doing so, it curled up like a snare.
The snake began to fight and died quickly. Then the stranger took the rope and put it in a box. What happened next was surprising (…).
After a few moments, he opened the box. We looked inside and were surprised to see that the rope had formed the words ‘Ave Maria’.
‘How did that happen?’
‘The serpent,’ answered the man, ‘is a symbol of the devil, while the rope represents the Hail Mary, or rather the Rosary, a succession of Hail Marys with which we may attack, conquer, and destroy all the devils of the hell'”.
St. John Bosco took the lesson seriously and wrote to his students: “Let us devoutly pray a Hail Mary whenever we are tempted, and we will surely win.”
Experience confirms what many exorcists have said about the power of the Virgin Mary over the devil. Satan is greatly humbled by the purity and simplicity of the Blessed Mother and runs as fast as he can whenever he hears her name.
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It is a powerful reminder that urges us to pray the Rosary devoutly when we feel threatened by the evil one.