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Saturday, January 1, 2011
Homily for the Feast of Mary the Mother of God: "Momma B."
Is there anyone in your life that you know that always brings you a sense of joy?
mary mother of godJohn, is a friend who I met at high school (Valley Forge). As I was in my last year of the seminary John died from kidney failure. From that time his mother has kind of taken me on as her son. I call her “Momma B.” Every time I’m with her she has me laughing and grateful for knowing her son. And when I leave their house I feel like I’ve just been with John again. She has his same humor, wit, and mannerisms. Every time I see her or hear her voice on the phone I think of her son John, my friend. And just as John always brought a sense of Joy into my life, so does she.
Is there anyone in your life like this? Someone that brings you a sense of Joy or Peace when you are in their presence?
It seems to me this could be a good image for Mary. She seemed to always bring such great joy to the people around her. Think about the Visitation “When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the holy Spirit … For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.”
Today’s reading from Luke so beautifully describes the Shepherds finding Mary, Joseph, and the infant lying in a manger. And they left “glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen.”
And at the foot of the cross when Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, "Woman, behold, your son." Then he said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother." And from that hour the disciple took her into his home. I imagine there was great joy for the disciple just being in her presence as he mourned the death of Jesus. Being with the Mother of God probably gave him a sense of the presence of Jesus even after his death.
So whenever there are special times of the year I call “Mom B.” Just to hear her voice and laugh for a moment as well as to try and bring her some Joy. I’m always reminded of her son. And I always leave feeling a sense of Joy and Peace.
So it is with Mary. Because she is the Mother of God, whenever we call upon her we too will experience the Joy of her Son Jesus. She so closely resembles him and she too so much desires to be your mother and to bring to birth in you the Spirit of her Son, Jesus. Spend some time with her, just be in her presence, talk to her, share your life with her, ask her for help, pray with her and you to will discover the Peace and the Joy of her Son Jesus this Christmas Season.
Happy New Year!