In writing his classic The Secret of the Rosary (ca. 1700), Montfort wanted to elevate the experience of praying this medieval devotion as well as underscore its spiritual power:
It is not so much the length of a prayer as the fervor with which it is said which pleases God and touches his heart. A single Hail Mary said properly is worth more than a hundred and fifty said badly.
In his Treatise on True Devotion to Mary, Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort included a chapter on Mary’s role in the last days which stressed the necessity of appealing to Her intercession in order to combat the forces of Satan. He wrote the work in 1712, four years before his death at 43. Curiously, it remained hidden away until 1842 when it was discovered by accident in a home for priests of the “Company of Mary” in France.
Montfort explains that in the days leading to the Antichrist, a powerful group will emerge from among the clergy which, through their devotion to Mary, will be granted special powers to fight Satan:
“But what will they be like, these servants, these slaves, these children of Mary? They will be ministers of the Lord who, like a flaming fire, will enkindle everywhere the fires of divine love. They will become, in Mary’s powerful hands, like sharp arrows, with which she will transfix her enemies” (56).
“They will be true apostles of the latter times to whom the Lord of Hosts will give eloquence and strength to work wonders and carry off glorious spoils from his enemies” (58).
“…[T]hey will be true disciples of Jesus Christ, imitating his poverty, his humility, his contempt of the world and his love. They will point out the narrow way to God in pure truth according to the holy Gospel, and not according to the maxims of the world” (59).