Jun 6 — Mary, Mother of the Church
In Roman Catholic Mariology, Mother of the Church (Latin: Mater Ecclesiae) is a title officially given to Mary by Pope Paul VI. The title first appeared in the 4th century writings of Saint Ambrose of Milan, as rediscovered by Hugo Rahner. It was also used by Pope Benedict XIV in 1748 and then by Pope Leo XIII in 1885. Pope John Paul II placed it in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and Pope Francis inserted a feast by this title into the Roman Calendar
In 2018, Pope Francis decreed that the Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church be inserted into the Roman Calendar on the Monday after Pentecost (also known as Whit Monday) and to be celebrated every year. The decree was signed on February 11, 2018, the memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes, on the 160th anniversary of the Lourdes apparitions.
After this, Jesus knew that everything had now been completed…
Today’s reading got me so excited and happy. The line that got me so excited stated that after Jesus gave Mother Mary to John, he ‘knew that everything had (then) been completed.’ I had been focusing on the fact that Mother Mary was given to us as our Mother, but this is the first time I’ve focused on the line after that. It emphasised that from the beginning, God wanted Mother Mary to be our Mother, and part of Jesus’ mission was to give all of us Mother Mary as our Mother. It was planned from the very beginning! It was not an afterthought.
Let us reflect on the Hail Mary. Elizabeth said that Mother Mary is blessed among women. Yes, Mother Mary was most blessed because she bore Jesus. But also, being blessed means having children. And Mother Mary had the most number of children among all women. No woman had more children than Mother Mary has. Mother Mary is indeed very blessed.
Before, I was really grateful that God gave us Mother Mary as our mother. Today, I’m even more grateful to God because God has deemed me worthy to be part of His blessings to Mother Mary. Yes, we all fall short and yet, God deemed us worthy to be a blessing to Mother Mary.
I believe Mother Mary not just loves us, but she also sees us as blessings God has given to her. We are part of the gift that God gave Mother Mary. Just this thought made Mother Mary’s gaze towards me more tender, and her love a lot more warmer. If we are God’s gift to Mother Mary, imagine how excited she probably is whenever she sees us.
Today, when we pray the Hail Mary, maybe we can imagine being welcomed by Mother Mary into her embrace. Let us ask her to let us feel how much she loves us.
And let us thank God our Father for giving us the honour of being gifts to the most wonderful Mother who walked the earth!
(Today’s OXYGEN by Stephanie Villa)
Prayer: Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Thanksgiving: Thank you, God, my Father, for choosing such a wonderful Mother for us.