Based on a talk by Fr. Jeff Norfolk
Jesus could have chosen any means to dwell among us, but He chose His Mother. Mary acknowledged that favor in her Magnificat: “For he has looked upon his handmaid’s lowliness; behold, from now on will all ages call me blessed,” (Luke 1:48). This mother, whom he had chosen, he also gave to us while he hung from 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,”’ (John 19:26-27). During his final hour, Jesus’ attention turned to his mother offering her as the Mother of humanity. Her sadness was intertwined with the joy of receiving us, her spiritual children.
As her spiritual children, we too need Mary, our mother. The words of her Magnificat remind us of the hope that the poor and humble bear in salvation (CCC 264), the importance of faith in the Lord, and the joy of a gratuitous heart (CCC 273). “For he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name,” (Luke 1:49). Mary represents the dignity of motherhood. During her early years, she confronted trials against motherhood. She witnessed King Herod’s slaughter of the innocents. As a dear cousin, she knew of Elizabeth’s initial barrenness which later led to the gift of a miraculous child. Through our own trials and family wounds, we can look to Mary as a model to follow and a source of intercession. Mary shows us how to handle the suffering that we receive. She demonstrates how all trials can be borne with love. However, she also teaches how to aspire to a richer and more beautiful way of life. She shows us how following her Son’s will can lead us away from many of the wounds we create ourselves.
Through selfishness and indifference to Christ, we fall into our own suffering and can cause hurt towards Jesus, ourselves, and others. We need Mary in order to overcome that indifference. We need her in order to know her Son. Jesus gave her to us so that we may come to him just as he came to us. Let us welcome Mary more fully into our lives and allow her to introduce us more perfectly to her Son.