When faced with such violence and hatred in the world, such as we have seen in Charlottesville, Barcelona, or Finland to name a few, the most appropriate response is always prayer. Prayer is what changes hearts and brings about an internal change that is not always visible, but much more effective than any vengeful response.
Specifically, prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary is one of the most effective means of achieving peace. One of her many titles in the Litany of Loreto is the "Queen of Peace," as she greatly desires peace on earth, both interior and exterior.
When faced with an escalation of violence in Syria, Pope Francis appealed to the Virgin Mary in 2013 and asked the world to join together in prayer on the eve of the Virgin Mary's birthday (September 7). He prayed, "Let us ask Mary to help us to respond to violence, to conflict and to war, with the power of dialogue, reconciliation and love. She is our mother: may she help us to find peace; all of us are her children! Help us, Mary, to overcome this most difficult moment and to dedicate ourselves each day to building in every situation an authentic culture of encounter and peace. Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us!"
As the Church celebrates Mary's Queenship on August 22, let us increase our prayers for the world and the many situations that are developing. It seems like everyday a new attack breaks out in a different country and so it is important to join our prayers together before the feet of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
She is the Queen of Peace and will bring our petitions to her Son, the Prince of Peace, who will look with mercy upon us and on the whole world.
Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us!