Saturday, September 02, 2006

Sweet Tender Beauty

As a Catholic, I look to Mary as the Mother of Christ and honor her just as he did, obeying the Fourth Commandment to honor our father and mother. Tonight I was thinking on the motherhood of Mary and in particular about the time when they had lost Jesus during the Passover celebrations (Luke 2). She had lost her son for 3 days! And I recalled how there are many times when I feel like I've lost sight of Christ. But there he is, in the "Temple", waiting for me in prayer and in the Sacraments, particularly in the Eucharist.

I feel like Christ is calling me to get to know his mother better. Not to worship or adore her, but to honor her just as he did, recognizing that knowing more about her will help me to know Christ more, love him more, and serve him more. When I meet a friend who I respect, I want to know about her family. Knowing my friends' mothers also helps me to understand my friends better.

Christ calls us to perfection, and what better model of a perfect mother have I than Mary? She bore Christ in her womb, raised him, and watched him preach and suffer and die. She was the closest person on Earth to Christ and we have the faith that she is with him in Heaven and can pray for us here on Earth. I have so much to learn from her! I look forward to growing in a deeper knowlege of Mary in the coming months through prayer and in Familia this year where we will study Redemptoris Mater "Mother of the Redeemer", the encyclical letter of Pope John Paul II on the Blessed Virgin Mary in the life of the Pilgrim Church. I can't wait to start!

"He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart." (Luke 2:51) He, the Lord, was obedient to Mary, who kept and pondered all these things in her heart, in humble acceptance of the Father's will. I pray that I can follow her example of humble obedience.

This image of Mary is almost identical to the one on Mary Clare's wall I was looking at earlier. The words Sweet Tender Beauty come to mind. May I get to know this beautiful woman better, this woman who is the Mother of the Redeemer and who always encourages us to "Do Whatever He tells you." (John 2:5b)

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