Have you ever wondered- is it just coincidence that Mother’s Day is celebrated in May, the month of Mary? Yet, surely, it must be part of a bigger plan.
Non-Catholics do not always understand the connection that Catholics feel to Mary. However, if you believe the Gospel story of Gabriel’s visit to Mary, it is easy to see she was chosen; she was “full of grace”. Throughout the Old Testament, we encounter many characters who did not want to be chosen by God, did not want to be sent forth; some even ran and tried to hide. But Mary stood firm. Mary said yes to God. Even at such a young age, she willingly accepted the burden of carrying a child. She was told that her heart would be pierced, foreshadowing her suffering just as her son would suffer. Yet, Mary still accepted God’s will.
Mary’s commitment to Jesus never wavered. She was there with him to witness his first miracle, she was there as he struggled carrying the cross, and she was there when his beaten and battered body was taken down from the cross. Jesus himself wanted his mother cared for after his death by John, the beloved disciple. Mary, the first to say yes and was still with the apostles on Pentecost to receive the Holy Spirit.
Our Blessed Mother, Mary deserves our respect for her patience, devotion, and love of her son, Jesus.
On Mother’s Day I am always grateful to have my mother still with me when so many of my friends do not. Just like Jesus’ earthly mother was his first teacher, for many of us, our own mothers were our first teachers. Strong, independent, beautiful women were the first influence on us even before we were born. Of course, our own mothers impact us, but so do many other mothers that we encounter in our lives. I remember my aunt who was so important to me. I think of my childhood friend’s mother who turned out to be my inspiration to become a teacher. I will never forget my long-time friend’s mother, who was my Sunday school teacher. My life is forever touched by my personal friend who has always inspired me in the calm, confident way she raised her own children and my son on many weekends.
Lucille Ball once said, “As long as your mother is alive, you will always be somebody’s baby.” Mary is always with us, and hopefully I will be blessed to have my mother for many, many more years. Honoring Mary and all our mothers is part of what makes May so wonderful!