This eternal predestination is the first thing to which the Holy Ghost would draw our attention. He does so by the opening words read in the Epistle of the Mass for the day of her Nativity: “Ab aeterno ordinata sum.” (Prov 8:23)
So, it is true to say that this amiable Infant, who is called Mary, daughter of Joachim and Ann, has been predestined and chosen by God from all eternity, that in her and by her, He may perform most marvelous things suitable to His eternal designs.
This predestination is ennobled and elevated by several very singular advantages; the first is, that it owes its origin to the infinite love of the Eternal Father for His Son, Jesus, His immense love for Mary, His well-beloved Daughter, and His inconceivable charity towards us.
The incomprehensible love of the adorable Father for His Son, Jesus, led Him to make choice from all eternity of a Mother who should be worthy of Him, and to prepare her from the first moment of her infancy for this dignity.
From that moment He began to enrich her with all the virtue and holiness which should fittingly adorn her who was to conceive, bring forth, nourish, and rule the Saint of Saints, Sanctity itself.
The ineffable love of the Father for His Daughter, Mary, is second only to His love for His Son, Jesus. Mary herself declared one day to St. Mechtilde, that He had, on many occasions, turned aside the torrent of His indignation from overwhelming the guilty world for the sake of His incomparable Mary, and that, even before she was born into this world. Deus me super omnem creaturam dilexit in tantum ut amore mei multoties pepercerit mundo, etiam antequam nata essem.” Lib. spec, gratiae, part I., cap. 19.
I repeat that the love He had for Mary caused the Eternal Father to predestinate her in His eternal counsels, to be Mother, nurse, and ruler of the Incarnate Word, the Queen of Angels, the Sovereign of heaven and earth, the Empress of the universe. From the first moment of her Infancy, her soul was inundated with torrents of grace, and with a perfection of holiness bordering on the infinite.
The unparalleled charity of the Father of Mercies towards us, led Him to conceive from all eternity the design of bringing into the world this incomparable Virgin, who should give us our Redeemer, and associate herself with Him in the work of our redemption. She must therefore be endowed, from her earliest years, with the perfections requisite for a predestination so excellent.
Behold here, the origin of this same predestination, raising it infinitely above the predestination of all the elect.
Another very considerable advantage is the perfect resemblance of Mary’s predestination to that of Jesus. For, as the man, Jesus, was chosen by God from all eternity to be the beginning of all His designs; Dominus possedit me in initio viarum suarum” (Prov 8:22). that is, the first in excellence among all the marvelous works of His hands, so also the Holy Ghost speaking by the mouth of the Church, pronounces these same words, “Initium viarum Domini,” in praise of this incomparable Daughter who, after the Man-God, is the most admirable ma