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Posts Tagged ‘Mother’

“Go with confidence to Mary”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/05/15 at 12:00 AM
When you see yourself with a dry heart, without knowing what to say, go with confidence to the Virgin Mary. Say to her, “My Mother Immaculate, intercede for me.” If you invoke her with faith, she will make you taste in the midst of your dryness the proximity of God. (Furrow, 695)

Let us also contemplate his blessed Mother, who is our Mother too. We find her on Calvary, at the foot of the Cross, praying. This is nothing new for Mary. She has always acted like this, as she fulfilled her duties and looked after her home. As she went about the things of this earth she kept her attention on God. Christ, who is perfectus Deus, perfectus homo, wanted us also to have the example of his Mother, the most perfect of creatures, she who is full of grace, to strengthen our desire to lift our eyes up to the love of God at every moment. Remember the scene at the Annunciation? The Archangel comes down bearing a divine message — the announcement that Mary is to be the Mother of God — and he finds her withdrawn in prayer. When Gabriel greets her, she is totally absorbed in God. ‘Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.’ A few days later she breaks out into the joy of the Magnificat, a Marian hymn which the Holy Spirit has transmitted to us through the loving faithfulness of St Luke. It reveals Mary’s constant and intimate conversation with God.

Our Mother had meditated deep and long on the words of the holy men and women of the Old Testament who awaited the Saviour, and on the events that they had taken part in. She must have marveled at all the great things that God, in his boundless mercy, had done for his people, who were so often ungrateful. As she considers the tenderness shown time after time by God towards his people, Mary’s immaculate Heart breaks out in loving words, ‘My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Saviour, for he has looked graciously upon the lowliness of his handmaid.’ The early Christians, children of this good Mother, learned from her; we can, and we ought to do likewise. (Friends of God, 241)

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A Christian Without Mary is an Orphan

In Uncategorized on 2015/01/30 at 12:00 AM

On Saturday afternoon, in the Lourdes Grotto in the Vatican Gardens, the Pope met with a group of young people from the diocese of Rome embarking on a vocational journey. “This visit to the Virgin is very important in our lives”, he said. “She accompanies us also in our definitive choice, the vocational choice, as she accompanied her Son on his vocational path which was so hard and so painful”.

“When a Christian says to me, not that he does not love the Virgin, but rather that it does not come to mind to look to the Virgin or to pray to the Virgin, I feel sad”, he said, adding that “a Christian without the Virgin is an orphan. A Christian needs these two women, these two mothers, two virgin women: the Church and Our Lady. And to ‘test’ a true Christian vocation, it is necessary to ask oneself, ‘how is my relationship with these two Mothers?”.

The Pontiff went on to remark that in today’s provisional culture, care must be taken not to lose sight of the definitive. “We are afraid of the definitive. And to choose a vocation, any vocation, including vocations that involve a ‘state’ such as marriage, consecrated life, the priesthood, one must choose with a view to the definitive. This is contrary to the culture of the provisional. It is a part of the culture in which we must live in this time, but we must live through this and conquer it”.

In conclusion, the Pope encouraged all present to sing the “Salve Regina” and imparted his blessing to all the young people and their families, asking them to pray for him.

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Spiritual Maternity of Christians

In Uncategorized on 2014/10/10 at 12:00 AM

THE CHURCH “MAKES” CHRISTIANS, AND CHRISTIANS “MAKE” THE CHURCH

 Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the Church during the “Year of Faith”, turning to the theme of maternity.

“Among the images that the Vatican Council II chose to help us better understand the nature of the Church, there is that of the ‘mother’: the Church is our mother in faith and in the supernatural life. For me it is the most beautiful image of the Church: the Church as mother. In what sense and how is the Church a mother? Let us begin with the human reality of maternity”.

“First and foremost a mother gives life, she carries her child in the womb for nine months and then introduces him to life – she generates him. The Church does likewise: she generates us in faith, by the work of the Holy Spirit who renders her fruitful, like the Virgin Mary. Certainly, faith is a personal act … but we receive faith from others, in a family, in a community that teaches me to say ‘I believe’, ‘we believe’. A Christian is not an island! We do not become Christians alone and by our own efforts, but rather faith is a gift from God that is given in and through the Church. And the Church gives us life in Baptism: that is, the moment in which she enables us to be born as children of God, the moment in which she gives us life in God, in which she generates us as a mother. … This permits us to understand something very important: our participation in the Church is not an external or formal fact, it is not a question of filling out a form, but is instead an internal and vital act. One does not belong to the Church in the same way as one belongs to a society, a team or any other organisation. It is a living bond, like that one has with one’s own mother as … the Church is truly the mother of all Christians”.

“A mother does not limit herself to giving life, but rather with great care helps her children to grow; she gives them milk, she nurtures them, she shows them the path of life, she accompanies them … she also knows how to correct them, to forgive, to understand; she knows how to be close to them in times of illness and suffering. In short, a good mother helps her children to come out of themselves, not to stay comfortably tucked under the maternal wing. … The Church, like a good mother, does the same thing: she accompanies our growth by transmitting to us the Word of God, which is a light that illuminates the path of Christian life, in administering the Sacraments. She nourishes us with the Eucharist, she brings us God’s forgiveness through the Sacrament of Penance, she supports us in times of sickness through the Anointing of the Sick. The Church accompanies us in all our life in faith, in all our Christian life”.

Francis concluded by remarking that in the first centuries of the Church, it was very clearly understood that “the Church, while she is the mother of Christians, while she ‘makes’ Christians, is also ‘made up’ of Christians. The Church is not something apart from us, but is rather the entire body of believers, as the ‘we’ of Christians: I, you, we are all part of the Church. So, we all experience the maternity of the Church, both pastors and faithful. At times I hear: ‘I believe in God but not in the Church … I’ve heard that the Church says … that priests say…”. Priests are one thing, but the Church is not made up solely of priests – we are all the Church! And if you say that you believe in God but you do not believe in the Church, you are saying that you do not believe in yourself, which is a contradiction. We are all the Church: from the recently baptised child to the bishops, to the Pope; we are all Church, and we are all equal in the eyes of God. We are all called to collaborate in the birth of faith in new Christians, we are all called upon to be educators in faith, to proclaim the Gospel. … We all participate in the maternity of the Church … we are all the Church … so that the light of Christ may illuminate the furthest reaches of the Earth. Long live the Holy Mother Church!

VIS 130911

“Mary is close beside you”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2014/10/03 at 12:00 AM
 
You are not alone. Suffer that tribulation joyfully. It’s true, poor child, that you don’t feel your Mother’s hand in yours. But… have you never seen the mothers of this earth, with arms outstretched, following their little ones when, without anyone’s help, they venture to take their first shaky steps? You are not alone: Mary is close beside you. (The Way, 900)

It makes me very happy to see that this devotion is always alive, awakening in Christians a supernatural desire to act as “members of God’s household.”

Seeing how so many Christians express their affection for the Virgin Mary, surely you also feel more a part of the Church, closer to those brothers and sisters of yours. It is like a family reunion. Grown‑up children, whom life has separated, come back to their mother for some family anniversary. And even if they have not always got on well together, today things are different; they feel united, sharing the same affection.

Mary continually builds the Church and keeps it together. It is difficult to have devotion to our Lady and not feel closer to the other members of the mystical body and more united to its visible head, the pope. That’s why I like to repeat: All with Peter to Jesus through Mary!(Christ is passing by, 139.)

“With Mary, how easy it is!”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2014/05/16 at 12:00 AM
Before, by yourself, you couldn’t. Now, you have turned to our Lady, and, with her, how easy it is! (The Way, 513)

Children, especially when they are small, give very little thought to what they should do for their parents and are much more concerned about what they hope to get from them. As children, we tend to be very self‑interested, although our mothers, as we have already mentioned, do not seem to mind really, because they have so much love in their hearts and they love with the best kind of affection: that which gives without expecting anything in return.

The same is true of Mary… If we find there have been times when we failed to be gentle and kind towards this good Mother of ours, we should feel sorry. I ask you now, as I ask myself, how are we honouring her?

Let us return once again to our everyday experience and see how we behave with our earthly mothers. What does a mother want most of all from her children, from those who are flesh of her flesh and blood of her blood? Her greatest desire is to have them close to her. When the children grow up and it is no longer possible to have them beside her, she waits impatiently for news from them, and everything that happens to them, from the slightest illness to the most important events, concerns her deeply.

Look: in the eyes of our Mother Mary we never cease to be little, because she opens to us the way to the Kingdom of Heaven, which will only be given to those who become little children. We should never separate ourselves from Our Lady. How should we honour her? By keeping close to her, talking to her, showing her that we love her, pondering in our hearts the scenes of her life on earth and telling her about our struggles, successes and failures. (Friends of God, 289-290)

“Mother! Call her again and again”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2014/05/08 at 12:00 AM
Mother! Call her again and again. She is listening, she sees you in danger perhaps, and with her Son’s grace she, your holy Mother Mary, offers you the refuge of her arms, the tenderness of her embrace. Call her, and you will find yourself with added strength for the new struggle. (The Way, 516)

If we want to understand Mary’s role in the Christian’s life and to feel attracted to her, to be in her company, we don’t need to go into the theological theory, even though it is an inexhaustible mystery that she is the Mother of God.

We have to love God with the same heart with which we love our parents, our brothers and sisters, the other members of our family, our friends. And we must love Mary with that same heart, too.

How does a normal son or daughter treat his mother? In different ways, of course, but always affectionately and confidently, never coldly. In an intimate way, through small, commonplace customs. And a mother feels hurt if we omit them: a kiss or an embrace when leaving or coming home, a little extra attention, a few warm words. (Christ is passing by, 142)

“Develop a lively devotion for Our Mother”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/05/30 at 9:11 AM
Invoke the Blessed Virgin. Keep asking her to show herself a Mother to you! As well as drawing down her Son’s grace, may she bring the clarity of sound doctrine to your mind, and love and purity to your heart, so that you may know the way to God and take many souls to him. (The Forge, 986)

Develop a lively devotion for Our Mother. She knows how to respond in a most sensitive way to the presents we give her. What is more, if you say the Holy Rosary every day, with a spirit of faith and love, Our Lady will make sure she leads you very far along her Son’s path. (Furrow, 691)

Without Our Mother’s aid, how can we manage to keep up our daily struggle? Do you seek it constantly? (Furrow, 692)

Love for our Mother will be the breath that kindles into a living flame the embers of virtue hidden in the ashes of your indifference. (The Way, 492)

Love our Lady. And she will obtain for you abundant grace to conquer in your daily struggle. And the enemy will gain nothing by those foul things that continually seem to boil and rise within you, trying to engulf in their fragrant corruption the high ideals, the sublime determination that Christ himself has set in your heart.– I will serve! (The Way, 493)

We go to Jesus–and we ‘return’ to him–through Mary. (The Way, 495)

Did Mary Have Other Children?

In 14 Book Corner on 2011/07/17 at 6:39 AM

“She certainly did.  Millions and millions of them!  But not according to the flesh.  He alone was born of her flesh; the rest of us were born of her spirit.    She would beget Jesus in joy in a stable, but he could beget us only on Calvary.”  p. 126

“Flesh allows for only one mother . . . but Spirit allows another mother.  Since Mary is the Mother of God, then she can be the Mother of everyone whom Christ redeemed. The Key to understanding Mary is this: We do not start with Mary.  We start with Christ, the Son of the Living God. . . . It is her Son that who makes her motherhood different. . . . We did not choose Mary; He did.”  p. 63

Now, “[A]t the Last Supper, He had made His last Will and Testament, giving us that which no on dying no man can was ever able to give, namely, Himself in the Holy Eucharist”

On the Cross, He “adds a codicil: He gave us His Mother.”  p. 74

“Mary was present at three births: that of John the Baptist, her Divine Son, and ours at the Cross.”  p.36

“Any objection to calling her the ‘Mother of God’ is fundamentally an objection to the Deity of Christ.” p.70

“At Cana, Jesus . . . changed her name from Mother to Woman, the significance of which does not become clear until the Cross.” p. 125

Note: Many have never known the sweetness of the natural mother’s love, but everyone can experience that unfathomable love of Mary, our supernatural, God-given Mother.

Sheen, Fulton THE WORLD’S FIRST LOVE.  Ignatius Press. http://www.ignatius.com/Products/CategoryCenter.aspx?SearchTerm=The+world’s+first+love

“Mary, Teacher of unlimited self-giving”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2011/05/08 at 9:30 AM
The Blessed Virgin Mary, Teacher of unlimited self-giving. Do you remember? It was in praise of her that Jesus Christ said: “Whoever fulfils the Will of my Father, he — she — is my mother! …” Ask of this good Mother that her answer, with the generosity it shows, may grow stronger in your soul — with the strength of love and liberation. Behold the handmaid of the Lord. (Furrow, 33)

Ask yourself now whether you are holding firmly and unshakably to your choice of Life? When you hear the most lovable voice of God urging you on to holiness, do you freely answer ‘Yes’? Let us turn our gaze once more to Jesus, as he speaks to the people in the towns and countryside of Palestine. He doesn’t want to force himself upon us. ‘If you have a mind to be perfect…’, he says to the rich young man. The young man refused to take the hint, and the Gospel goes on to say: he went away forlorn. That is why I have sometimes called him the ‘sad lad’. He lost his happiness because he refused to hand over his freedom to God.

Consider now the sublime moment when the Archangel Gabriel announces to the Virgin Mary the plans of the Most High. Our Mother listens, and asks a question to understand better what the Lord is asking of her. Then she gives her firm reply: Fiat! Be it done unto me according to thy word! This is the fruit of the best freedom of all, the freedom of deciding in favor of God. (Friends of God, 24-25)

“Mother! Call her again and again”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2011/05/05 at 9:27 AM
Mother! Call her again and again. She is listening, she sees you in danger perhaps, and with her Son’s grace she, your holy Mother Mary, offers you the refuge of her arms, the tenderness of her embrace. Call her, and you will find yourself with added strength for the new struggle. (The Way, 516)
If we want to understand Mary’s role in the Christian’s life and to feel attracted to her, to be in her company, we don’t need to go into the theological theory, even though it is an inexhaustible mystery that she is the Mother of God.

We have to love God with the same heart with which we love our parents, our brothers and sisters, the other members of our family, our friends. And we must love Mary with that same heart, too.

How does a normal son or daughter treat his mother? In different ways, of course, but always affectionately and confidently, never coldly. In an intimate way, through small, commonplace customs. And a mother feels hurt if we omit them: a kiss or an embrace when leaving or coming home, a little extra attention, a few warm words. (Christ is passing by, 142)

Note: Many can say: “I never knew the sweetness of my own mother’s love, but I certainly have known the sweetness of the Mother Our Lord gave me.”