A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Mary as Model

pope-francis-nov-16Mary shows us how to listen to God ...

The prayer of the rosary is, in many ways, the synthesis of the history of God’s mercy, which becomes a history of salvation for all who let themselves be shaped by grace. The mysteries we have contemplated are concrete events by which God’s intervention on our behalf develops. Through prayer and meditation on the life of Jesus Christ, we see once more his merciful countenance, which he shows to everyone in all the many needs of life. And Mary, Jesus’ first disciple, accompanies us along this journey, pointing to her Son who radiates the very mercy of the Father.

Praying the rosary does not remove us from the problems of life. On the contrary, it demands that we immerse ourselves in the history of each day, so as to grasp the signs of Christ’s presence in our midst. Whenever we contemplate an event, a mystery of the life of Christ, we are asked to reflect on how God comes into our own lives, so as to be able to welcome him and follow him.

... and serve our brothers and sisters

In this way, we discover how we can follow Christ by serving our brothers and sisters. By accepting and making our own certain outstanding events in the life of Jesus, we share in his work of evangelisation, so that God’s Kingdom can increase and spread in the world. We are disciples, but also missionaries, bringing Christ wherever he asks us to be present. So we cannot keep the gift of his presence within us. On the contrary, we are called to share with everyone his love, his tenderness, his goodness and his mercy. It is the joy of sharing that stops at nothing, for it brings a message of freedom and salvation.

Mary helps us to understand what it means to be a disciple of Christ. Eternally chosen to be his Mother, she learned to become his disciple. Her first act was to listen to God. She obeyed the message of the Angel and opened her heart to receive the mystery of divine motherhood. But is not enough simply to listen. That is certainly the first step, but listening then needs to be translated into concrete action.

At the service of the Gospel

The disciple truly puts his life at the service of the Gospel. So it is that the Virgin Mary went immediately to Elizabeth to help her in her pregnancy; In Bethlehem she gave birth to the Son of God; at Cana she showed her concern for two young spouses; at Golgotha she did not flee pain but stood beneath the cross of Jesus and, by his will, became the Mother of the Church; After the resurrection, she encouraged the apostles assembled in the Upper Room as they awaited the Holy Spirit who would make them fearless heralds of the Gospel. Throughout her life Mary did everything that the Church is asked to do in perennial memory of Christ. In her faith, we learn to open our hearts to obey God; in her self-denial, we see the importance of tending to the needs of others; in her tears, we find the strength to console those experiencing pain. In each of these moments, Mary expresses the wealth of divine mercy that reaches out to all in their daily needs.pope-at-christmas
Source: Vatican Insider, 8 October 2016

Be like the Holy Family

You know very well that the true joy which we experience in the family is not superficial; it does not come from material objects, from the fact that everything seems to be going well… True joy comes from a profound harmony between persons, something which we all feel in our hearts and which makes us experience the beauty of togetherness, of mutual support along life’s journey. But the basis of this feeling of deep joy is the presence of God, the presence of God in the family and his love, which is welcoming, merciful, and respectful towards all. And above all, a love which is patient: patience is a virtue of God and he teaches us how to cultivate it in family life, how to be patient, and lovingly so, with each other. To be patient among ourselves. A patient love. God alone knows how to create harmony from differences. But if God’s love is lacking, the family loses its harmony, self-centredness prevails and joy fades. But the family which experiences the joy of faith communicates it naturally. That family is the salt of the earth and the light of the world, it is the leaven of society as a whole.

Dear families, always live in faith and simplicity, like the Holy Family of Nazareth!  The joy and peace of the Lord be always with you!

Source: Osservatore Romano, 27 October 2013

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