The Eternal Mother

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The Blessed Virgin was the gracious Mother of the Divine Redeemer, His supreme associate, and humble servant. In conceiving Christ, in bringing Him forth, nourishing Him, presenting Him to the Father in the Temple, suffering with Him as He died on the cross, she cooperated singularly with the Savior, by obedience, faith, hope and burning love.

We should call her The Eternal Mother, for her Motherhood of Christ was planned for all eternity, per the Council Vatican II.  When the Almighty Father decreed to send His Son to incarnate, the determination included the provision for His Mother.  Mary was eternally planned to be Christ’s Mother.

She did not suffer the physical pain of bringing Him forth, as ordinary Mothers do – a great work, fraught with danger of death, before modern medicine. “God did not diminish but consecrated her virginal integrity”.  Yet she suffered an excruciating pain on Calvary.

Her suffering had begun years before, at the very day of the Annunciation. She would understand the terrible words of Isaiah in Chapter 53 about the lamb bruised and slaughtered for our offenses.  Mary committed herself to the great sacrifice when she presented Jesus in the Temple. “Behold, I come to do your will Oh God.” That dread pledge of consent would continue, to its tremendous toll at the cross foot, beyond human comprehension.

A mother has a second role to fulfill: to take care of the new life, while she is willing, able, and needed. In ordinary life, the mother is not much needed when the child grows to adulthood.  In spiritual life, we remain children in need of grace while we have not reached Heaven. Every grace comes through her for Vatican II taught she is the Mediatrix.  She shared in earning all graces, and she shares similarly in giving all graces, so we need her all lifelong.

An ordinary mother should give care while she is willing and capable. Some mothers stop being willing or capable, but the Blessed Mother is always willing and capable.

On June 19, 1947, Pope Pius XII sent a message to the Marian Congress of Ottawa, Canada. He said: “when the little maid of Nazareth uttered her fiat to the message of the angel . . . she became not only the mother of God in the physical order of nature, but also in the supernatural order of grace she became the mother of all who…would be made one under the Headship of her divine Son. The Mother of the Head would be the mother of the members.” Her Son is the Head of the Mystical Body, and we are the members.  She could not become the Head’s mother without becoming the members’ mother. It began at the Annunciation and effected excruciatingly at Calvary.  Any soul grows greatly coping with great suffering. Mary was full of grace from the start, and her grace capacity grew all lifelong.

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