“Let us bind ourselves tightly to the Sorrowful Heart of our Heavenly Mother and reflect on its boundless grief and how precious is our soul.” – St. Pio of Pietrelcina: (1887 –1968): was a friar, priest, stigmatist, and mystic, now venerated as a saint of the Catholic Church)
Gospel Text: (JN 19:25-27)
Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother
and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas,
and Mary Magdalene.
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.
In the Letter to the Hebrews, St. Paul emphasizes three strong words, he says that Jesus "learned, obeyed and suffered". It’s the opposite of what had happened to our father Adam, who did not want to learn what the Lord commanded, who did not want to suffer, or obey. Instead, even though Jesus is God, He is annihilated, He humbled Himself and became a servant. This is the glory of the Cross of Jesus.
Jesus came into the world has a man, and by being a man, walked with men. He came into the world to obey, and He obeyed. But he learned this obedience from suffering. Adam left Paradise with a promise, a promise that lasted for so many centuries. Today, through this obedience, this self-abnegation, this humiliation, through Jesus, that promise becomes hope. And the people of God walk with sure hope. Even the Mother, 'the New Eve', as St. Paul himself calls her, in order to participate in her Son’s journey, learned, suffered and obeyed. And thus she becomes Mother.
The Gospel shows us Mary at the foot of the Cross. Jesus says to John, "Behold your mother." Mary -"is anointed Mother"
And this is our hope. We are not orphans, we have Mothers: Mother Mary. But the Church is Mother and the Mother Church is anointed when it takes the same path of Jesus and Mary: the path of obedience, the path of suffering, and when she has that attitude of continually learning the path of the Lord. These two women - Mary and the Church - carry on the hope that is Christ, they give us Christ, they bring forth Christ in us. Without Mary, there would be no Jesus Christ; without the Church, we cannot go forward.
Today, looking at this woman by the Cross, steadfast in following her Son in His suffering to learn obedience, looking at her we see the Church and look at our Mother. And also, we look at our little soul that will never be lost, if it continues to be close to these two great women who accompany us in life: Mary and the Church. And just as our fathers left Paradise with a promise, today we can go forward with a hope: the hope that our Mother Mary, steadfast at the Cross, and our Holy Mother, the hierarchical Church, give us.