Posted by: Peadar Ban | October 5, 2012

Behold Your Mother!

Some time ago I was asked if I had a relationship with my mother.  Now I am a Catholic.  The person who asked me the question is a Catholic, too.  And that has something to do with both question and answer. You may be shocked to know what I answered.  I answered that I really had never met my mother.  “In fact,” I said, “I don’t think I have seen her feet, let alone her face.  So, I can’t say that I have any kind of a relationship with her at all.”

You are probably thinking I come from a very dysfunctional family.  You might have a point if you thought the conversation referred to my biological mother.  But my Mom wasn’t the person we were talking about.

Let me try to set you straight, to clear up any confusion.  When he was dying on the cross, Jesus Christ called out to John, the Beloved Disciple. “Behold your mother,” He said.  And to His own mother, Mary, He said of St. John, “Behold your son.”  The Catholic Church teaches, and I believe, that with those words, Mary, the Mother of God, became the Mother of us all in the order of grace.  She became my mother and yours, too.  Since Christ is our brother in the flesh, why not?

Well, I believed it, but like so many people I had never really done anything about it.  Now, we are back to the beginning of this little story and the question.  Then I was right when I said I truly did not know my Mother.  I cannot give the same answer to the question today.  You may want to know why.

How did I change?  And, there has been a change in me.  There was certainly no change in Mary, whom I have come to be comfortable with calling my Mother.  To begin with, one does not change in eternity.  I have to say the change began to occur with my becoming more serious about trying to follow Christ through imitating His Mother’s total entrustment of herself to the will of God.  In other words, the basic principle involved my taking the risk and making the choice to establish a unique relationship with Mary in day to day living.  And, it turns out, such a relationship really is a very ordinary kind of thing!

One of the first and most visible results of my making this decision was a deepening of spiritual life and a more meaningful participation in Holy Mass through reflection upon and sharing about the scripture readings in light of the writings of saints, Catechism of the Catholic Church references, and other worthwhile resources.  There is nothing radical about such a “method“ of growing in faith, and it is really beneficial to everyone.

“Behold Your Mother” is  a reflection series published by In The Arms of Mary Foundation — which, to put it simply, is an organization dedicated to sharing how God, through the Blessed Mother as a special instrument of His love, can make one’s yoke easier and burden lighter during the ordinary and difficult events of life.  “Behold Your Mother” is a five week series of selections from Catholic books published by the Foundation, all of which have an imprimatur.

Some of the subjects in this series include reflections on Mary’s “trials of faith”, her humility, how to imitate Mary in everything we do and, finally, how to give ourselves over to Mary’s motherly influence in and guidance for our lives.

I cannot say that it took me just five weeks to come to know Mary as Mother and Friend, that in so short a time I formed a relationship with her and developed a deep devotion to her.  No, that doesn’t happen.  I can say, though, that writing something like this would not have seemed as natural as writing a letter to my children before my exposure to and involvement in this way of living my faith.  I know she is near.  I know she listens to me, and that she carries my cares and worries, my difficulties and my little triumphs – and me myself, right along with them, to the throne of God.

The Christian Book Corner is interested in seeing your relationship with Mary Your Mother grow and strengthen through the “Behold You Mother” reflection series, so named by the very Voice of Truth.  Mary the Mother of God is your mother, and The Christian Book Corner offers the printed series booklet to you, your group or your parish at it usual discount.  You may be sure that, as with everything we offer, this reflection series has been “Chosen with care; chosen with Prayer.”

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