We have a long-standing tradition in the Church, to begin the New Year with the Feast of Mary, Mother of God. This is not merely an honour but a Dogma of our faith. As we celebrate this feast on the 1st January, the Church calls us all –
(a) To give glory to our heavenly Father for having bestowed on Mary this unparalleled honour;
(b) To honour Mary for this singular blessing – the unique privilege to be the Mother of God;
(c) To follow the Will of God, as did Mary our Mother. The Litany of our Blessed Virgin Mary speaks volumes, yet I add a few thoughts / insights on Mother Mary.
- Everything about Mary is connected with Jesus. She does not have an existence by herself.
- Mother Mary had gone through her share of trials, tears, struggles, pain and grief. As the Mother of God, her life was not comfortable. It was filled with uncertainty and sorrow. Prophet Simeon said to her “ a sword will pierce your heart”. It wasn’t just ONE SWORD – as we all know. Mothers face anguish because of their children. Mother Mary shed tears for us her children because of our sins and the impact they made and still make on her Beloved Son.
- When Mary was called to be the Mother of God, her ‘Yes’ was not just once. It was consistent – be it in the stable, the flight into Egypt and all the way to Calvary. She accepted God’s Will in every situation. Jesus saw this consistent response in daily life and that is why He referred to her as “the one who does the Will of My Father”.
We too are constantly called to be the Disciples of Jesus. Our response needs to be consistent. We cannot switch it ON when we come for mass and switch it OFF after we get out of the Church. We cannot switch it ON at prayer time and switch it OFF during party time. The CALL OF JESUS is ON all the time. Our response has to be perfect. It is NOT EASY, but God will provide everything for our discipleship to be complete.
- Mary was kept holy, without the stain of Original Sin because the Son of God was going to be born in her. The intimacy between God and a Human Being could not get more perfect as it was between God and our Blessed Mother. God wanted His son to be born of a person Pure and Holy. You and I are privileged to receive the Body, Blood, Soul and divinity of Jesus in Holy Communion. Our body also needs to be pure and holy like Mary, to hold the Holiest of Holy – the Real Presence of Jesus. We should purify ourselves and be very careful how we receive Jesus within our heart. Though we do have the exterior signs of respect and honour, even more we should have our interior of holiness and purity to hold Jesus.
- The silent and powerful bond between Mother and Son began with both their ‘yes’ at the Annunciation and remained consistent till the final ‘yes’ at Calvary. We too can have such a powerful bond with Jesus, if we allow Jesus to rule our life. How much is Jesus impacting us? Are our thoughts, words and actions flavoured by Jesus and His laws? Are we willing to say ‘yes’ when situations don’t go our way in times of testing and adversity? Being a Disciple of Jesus IS NOT EASY but IT IS POSSIBLE, with the Love and Protection of our Beloved Mother. As we walk through 2022 with all its uncertainties, let us follow Mary, the Mother of our God, Jesus, in her most powerful prayer. “Let it be done to me according to Your word”. May you experience the presence of Jesus, Mary and Joseph walking with you throughout 2022. Have a blessed and holy year!