Sandro Magister on his blog Chiesa notes that Pope Francis has a special devotion to Mary, Untier of Knots:
In it Mary is depicted untying the knots of a ribbon held out to her by an angel, which another angel is receiving from her with no more knots. The meaning is clear. The knots are all that complicates life, difficulties, sins. And Mary is the one who helps to untie them.
His doctoral thesis was abandoned at its birth, and even the thought of Romano Guardini did not leave a lasting imprint upon Bergoglio. In the interview with Pope Francis in “La Civiltà Cattolica,” in which he dedicates ample space to his authors of reference, Guardini is not there.
On display in the church, the image of Mary “desatanudos” attracted a growing number of devotees, converted sinners, and marked an unexpected growth of religious practice. To such an extent that after a few years there was a well-established tradition of a pilgrimage to the image, from all over Buenos Aires and from even farther away, on the 8th day of every month.
“I never felt myself so much an instrument in the hands of God,” Bergoglio confided to a Jesuit confrere who was his disciple, Fr. Fernando Albistur, now a professor of biblical studies at the Colegio Máximo di San Miguel in Buenos Aires.
And he is not the only one. In the same book, Fr. Juan Carlo Scannone, the most authoritative of the Argentine theologians and a former professor of the young Jesuit Bergoglio, also relates the same episode.
In Scannone’s judgment, the instance of the Blessed Mother “untier of knots” helps us to understand more deeply the “pastoral” profile of Pope Francis and his accentuated attention to the “people.”
Go here to read the rest. PopeWatch had never heard of this devotion and it is indeed a powerful image, as all of us encounter many knots, some within ourselves, to untie as we traverse this vale of tears. Magister goes on to note that the Pope has always viewed himself as pastoral leaving the questions of doctrine to others. Perhaps his devotion to Mary, the Untier of Knots, indicates his belief that God will resolve such questions. At any rate knowledge of this devotion gives insight into the man that Pope Francis is, even if, as with so many things about this Pope, the insight raises as many questions as it answers.