Though much dispute in our time, nevertheless, the deepest and most authentic mission of a married woman is her spouse and family.
Mother Mary is the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ – God the Son. She is the Spiritual mother of the Church. She is the mother of all Christian faithful. The Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary gives a long list of how Mother Mary could be described. It is actually a compendium of the titles of Mary. Indeed the list is inexhaustible. This is because Mother Mary means different things to different people. Mother Mary is the timeless role model of women. She is a Praiseworthy example to be imitated at all times to achieve our purpose (calling) to serve humanity.
Again, the Blessed Virgin Mary remains the model for all women at all times since the reality which she exemplifies is all-inclusive and transcends time and cultures. From her a woman of any cultural and social setting can learn that the fulfillment of feminine existence is not warranted by aspiring to become a copy of the masculine. Mother Mary is the paradigm of a truly liberated woman, a woman who freely embraces her own calling and knows herself.
Though much dispute in our time, nevertheless, the deepest and most authentic mission of a married woman is her spouse and family. In an address to women at the close of Vatican II on December 8, 1965, Pope Paul VI explained: “Wives, mothers of families, the first educator of the human race in the intimacy of the family circle, pass on to your sons and your daughters the traditions of your fathers at the same time that you prepare them for an unsearchable future. Always remember that by her children a mother belongs to that future which perhaps she will not see”.
Pope Paul VI further stated that the role of women in family is indispensable, especially because of their sensibility towards the weakest and defenseless family members. Therefore, motherhood is one way to fulfill our call to defend the weak and the poor. For those married and blessed with children this is done through their husbands and children. For people who are not married or don’t have children, it might be through building proper relationship with their extended families or communities.
The Qualities of our Mother Mary that we should emulate
Mother Mary was “full of grace” this means God lived within her. She was kind and loving. She was attentive to God’s word and obedient to God’s will. How devoted are you to God’s word? Are you kind and loving? Are you obedient to God’s will?
Mother Mary and Joseph presented their son Jesus to the priest in the Temple (LK 2: 22-38). Mother Mary protected her son from King Herod. King Herod tried to kill the baby Jesus but Mother Mary and Joseph her husband fled to Egypt to protect their son. Christian mothers must keep their children away from evil forces that could harm them. Violent or abusive adults, undisciplined playmates and bad television programs. Today we have many ‘Herods’ are you protecting your children from these ‘herods’?
Mother Mary also nourished Him spiritually by encouraging His faith in God by teaching Him the values and virtues of goodness and godliness. The scripture (Lk 2:40) tells us that “The child grew and became strong, he was full of wisdom, and God’s blessings were upon him. What formal and informal teaching of God’s word do you bring to your family as a mother? We need to teach God’s words diligently to our children. Deut. 6:7.
Mother Mary in agreement with Joseph her husband took their son Jesus to the Synagogue in Nazareth each week in observance of the Sabbath (LK 4:16) and they took him to the Temple in Jerusalem once a year for Passover (LK 2:41). Mothers who follow mother Mary’s example go to mass often and they take their children with them.
The gospel says that Jesus was obedient to Mary (LK 2:51) which implies that Mother Mary was firm and demanding with her son. Christian mothers do not let their children do whatever they like but have high standards for Christian conduct, have a set of house rules, and insist upon them. Do you spare the rod of correction?
Mother Mary had a very special relationship with Jesus and that is what we Catholics rely on as we take concerns and petitions to her. We ask Mother Mary to intercede for us with Jesus, believing that her special relationship with Jesus is effective in calling forth God’s response to our needs. At the wedding at Cana, Mother Mary interceded for the celebrants when they ran out of wine. And because of her quiet, simple faith in Him, Jesus heard and answered with the first miracle. As she intercedes for us, she encourages us to have a relationship with Jesus, look up to Him, listen to Him and obey Him. Besides, What relationship do you have with your children? Mother Mary had a relationship with Jesus. Can your child/children have the boldness of letting you know of their challenges. Do they listen to you when you express a need?
When Jesus was crucified, Mother Mary stood at the foot of the cross and suffered with him (John 19:25). She never abandoned her child, even during adulthood, particularly when things were at their worst. How do you handle challenging children? Do you forsake them or stay to offer love and support in whatever way you can.
Mother Mary was a praying woman. She knew how to glorify God and worship Him. She knew how to appreciate God. No wonder the hymn; “The Magnificant”. Are you excited about what God is doing in your life?
Women should realize their full potentials and follow the plan of their own Creator and Designer. Only in obedience to Him and His design like our mother Mary will women truly be able, in the fullest sense, to give glory to God. Motherhood has always been a sacred and noble vocation, but Mary raised it to even greater stature when she became the mother of God. As the mother who is “blessed among women” (LK 1:42) Mother Mary gives the clearest and most inspiring picture of what the ideal mother should look like, and every Christian mother would be wise to take her cues.
May Mother Mary intercede for us Amen
Through our Mother Mary!