“Behold Thy Mother”

I set these words before you once again to contemplate upon. Treasured words that Jesus spoke from the Cross. . . words to St. John. . . but addressed to each and every one of us as Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen proves beyond doubt in his book entitled, “The World’s First Love.”

He shares with us his own thoughts below but also unlocks the mystical words from scripture . . . he gives us a “golden key” to understand that we are children of Mary:

Our Blessed Lord now looks down from His Cross to the two most beloved creatures that He has on earth, John and His Blessed Mother.  He picks up the refrain of Cana, and addresses Our Blessed Mother with the same title He gave her at the marriage feast.  He calls her, “Woman.”  It is the second Annunciation. With a gesture of His dust-filled eyes and His torn-crowned head, He looks longingly at her who had sent Him willingly to the Cross, who is now standing beneath it as a cooperator in His Redemption and he says:

“Behold thy son.”

Then, turning to John, He does not call him John; to do that would have been to

address him as the son of Zebedee and no one else.  But, in his anonymity,

John stands for all of us – Our Lord thus says to His beloved disciple:

“Son, behold thy mother.”

Here is the answer, after all these years, to the mysterious words of the Incarnation which stated that Our Blessed Mother laid her “first born” in the manger.  Did that mean that Our Blessed Mother was to have other children?

It certainly did, but not according to the flesh.  Our Divine Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is the only Son of Our Blessed Mother by the flesh. But Our Lady was to have other children, not according to the flesh, but according to the spirit!

Wow, Wow, Wow!!!  When I read these words my mind was filled with such clarity and truth. How many times have I heard the argument from those who try to infer that Our Lady had other children besides Jesus. Only Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen could have taken these words of mystery written in sacred scripture and explained them in such simple eloquence.

We are the children born to Our Lady “in the spirit.”  We are her children and she is our Mother. And how she looks after us and loves us! She knows what we need before we even ask. Didn’t she do that at the wedding at Cana? I bet the newly married couple didn’t have a clue that they had run out of wine, but the Mother of God clearly did and went to her son immediately asking for His help:

“When they ran out of wine, since the wine provided for the wedding was all finished, the mother of Jesus said to him,

“They have no wine.”

John 2:2-4

When writing these blogs, it seems that another “hand” is always at work and surely it seems to me that Mary wants us to understand very clearly that she is our mother.  She is there in every situation that we find ourselves needing “mothering.” She reaches out her hand to hold ours in our sorrows and in our joys and wants to protect us from all danger that might come upon our path in life. All we need to do is extend our own hand. . . joining with hers. . . and giving her our own hearts.

I chose the title A Hand to Hold Through Your Life’s Journey for this blog dedicating it to the Mother of God from its onset. She has worked miracles in my own life and has never failed me. She has walked with me through my own pain and loss and she has been there in my joys. She is a constant, loving presence in my life and wishes to be present, too,  in every one of her spiritual children’s lives.

Her hand reaches out to us in every situation we find ourselves in. . .

Her hand comforts us when there is no other hand to comfort us. . .

Her hand lovingly strokes us when sorrow comes knocking at the doors of our lives. . .

And it is her loving hand that always points to her Son, Jesus. . .

After my last posting written two weeks ago in honor of Mother’s Day and Mary, I received a very beautiful email from a friend. It is just one awesome example of how Mary, our mother, “mothers” us here on earth in our needs:

Thank you, Anita.

I enjoyed your tribute to Mary, our mother, as well as all our earthly mothers.  I will share one of my stories with you. 

My own mother was only 61 when she died after ten years of great suffering.  She died on my 39th birthday. I had just had my ninth child. I was hurt to lose my mother on my birthday and also when I still had so many young children who loved their grandmother. 

The next year I was to attend a Magnificat Breakfast. This is an apostolate for women. The breakfast was scheduled for my birthday, the first anniversary of my mother’s death. I was feeling so blue and almost did not go. At the end of the breakfast they had a drawing for a beautiful statue of our Blessed Mother. Wouldn’t you know, my name was drawn. I knew, just knew in my heart, this was a sign from my mother and my Blessed Mother that it was all right. I realized that my mothers death on my birthday was actually a gift. I had this day to share with my mother- one thing I would never have to share with my seven siblings. And to this day, the statue of Our Blessed Mother holds a place of honor in my home – a constant reminder of the love of my two mothers.  

Yes, Mary holds our hands and wraps us in her mantle of love.  She is always there to console and comfort us.  

Thanks for your blog.  

Theresa

For so many reasons, Theresa’s email touched me greatly when I read it and I wanted so much to share it with all my readers.  I understood the pain of losing a mother as I have shared with you in past postings. I have also understood how a statue of the Blessed Mother can bring much happiness, healing and joy to our spirits. Theresa shared her picture with me of the Blessed Mother statue that she had been graced with at the Magnificat Breakfast and I have set it as my featured image above for all of you to enjoy as well. Mary holds Jesus so lovingly in her arms as she wants to hold each one of us.

Nothing is coincidence in this world and my heart wore an “interior smile” when I read Theresa’s email. You see, my featured image of the Blessed Mother in Behold Thy Mother – Part I was a statue that was present at the Magnificat Women’s Retreat – Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapter, that I had attended right before Mother’s Day. I fell in love with this statue and couldn’t take my eyes off “Her” throughout the whole retreat. Her hands were extended out in love and her gaze seemed to be personally on each of us that stood before her.

Know that her gaze is always on you as well!!!  You are her spiritual child, and she loves you more than you could ever imagine. She tells us in Medugorje that if we knew how much she loves us we would cry for joy!!! She, too, wants to receive your love as well and St. Maximillian Kolbe tells us this in his own words. . .

“Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin too much.

You can never love her more than Jesus did.”

 

 

©2018Anita Guariglia

Featured Image of Statue of Blessed Mother & Jesus – Theresa Koch

Image of Immaculate Heart of Mary – Mary Ellen Fosso & Margie Woods

The World’s First Love – Fulton J. Sheen (Pages 119-120)

Scripture – Jerusalem Bible

magnificat-ministry.net