May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

A very blessed and happy Mother's Day to all.  Although Mother's Day is what we would call a "Hallmark holiday," it is a good idea to honor mothers in a special way, at least once a year. After all, our mothers have done so much for us, most importantly, giving birth to us.

Yesterday I was at a joint Oblate meeting at the monestary where I am a Benedictine Oblate, and the topic of the talk given was the sacrificial nature of the Mass.  It was a great talk and something that we all need to be reminded of, and not just focus on the meal aspect.  Someone in the audience brought up the question of Our Blessed Mother's sacrifice.  I am not sure if the presenter really understood the question, and to be honest I was a bit confused as to the connection with the Mass, but I kept thinking about it.  This morning on the way to work, I thought of all the sacrifices that mothers must make for their children, the very first being sacrificing their body and blood to give life to a child.  Our body supports the life that grows within us. Our blood nourishes the growing fetus.  Isn't that what happens when we receive the Eucharist? Christ's Body and Blood supports and nourishes us.  Ok it might be a stretch, but I think it is worth exploring.

You don't find too many renderings of Our Blessed Mother pregnant, aside from paintings of the Visitation or traveling to Bethlehem.  I did however come across this icon.  I thnk of all the sacrifices Mary had to make. A young virgin, not really understanding all that was about to happen to her, she sacrificed her own body and her will in obedience to the Father's will for her.  We are aked to imitate her in her obedience and her fiat, her yes to all that the Father wanted her to do and to be. So too, the God asks us to say yes out of obedience and love. But sacrifice does not mean giving up who we are.  In fact, it means to truly become who we are.  The word sacrifice means "to make holy," and isn't that what God wants of us, to BE HOLY?

Motherhood is a holy thing.  It is a great gift that God gives those women who are blest to become mothers.  On this Mother's Day, as we remember and thank God for the gift of our mothers, let us also remember our Blessed Mother, who teaches us how to be holy, how to obey God's will, and how to sacrifice ourselves for our children.

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