Mary our Mother

“But if we claim the inheritance of children, there must be esteem for the motherhood through which it comes. A third aspect of Legion devotion to Mary is the special honouring of her as our real mother, which in very fact she is.

“Mary became the Mother of Christ and our mother when to the Angel’s salutation she pronounced her meek assent, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord, let it be with me according to your word.” (Lk 1:38) That motherhood of hers was proclaimed at the moment when it reached its complete expansion, that is, when Redemption was consummated. Amid the sorrows of Calvary Jesus said to her from the cross: “Woman, here is your son” and to St. John “Here is your mother.” (Jn 19:26-27) Through St. John, these words were addressed to all the elect. Fully co-operating by her consent and sorrows in this spiritual birth of mankind, Mary became in the fullest and most perfect sense our mother.

“Truly her children, we must behave as such, and indeed as very little children dependent utterly upon her. We must look to her to feed us, to guide us, to teach us, to cure our ailments, to console us in our griefs, to counsel us in our doubts, to recall us when we wander, so that wholly confided to her care, we may grow to the resemblance of our elder brother, Jesus, and share his mission of combating sin and conquering it.”

“Mary is the Mother of the Church not only because she is the Mother of Christ and his most intimate associate in ‘the new economy when the Son of God took a human nature from her, that he might in the mysteries of his flesh free man from sin’ but also because ‘she shines forth to the whole community of the elect as a model of the virtues.’ No human mother can limit her task to the generation of a new man. She must extend it to the function of nourishing and educating her offspring. Just so the Blessed Virgin Mary, after participating in the redeeming sacrifice of the Son, and in such an intimate way as to deserve to be proclaimed by him the mother not only of his disciple John but — may we be allowed to affirm it — of mankind which he in some way represents, now continues to fulfil from heaven her maternal function as the cooperator in the birth and development of divine life in the individual souls of redeemed men. This is a most consoling truth which, by the free consent of God the All-Wise, is an integrating part of the mystery of human salvation, therefore it must be held as faith by all Christians.” (SM)