Can you imagine “embracing” the Mother of God. .  .our “Mama Mary?”

Picture her ringing your front doorbell and waiting patiently for you to come and invite her into your home. You come to the door to see who it is and there before your very eyes is the “Mother of God” standing on your front porch! She is beautiful beyond description. Probably no words in the English language nor any other language could best describe her transcendent beauty or the love that pours out from her very being.

After the initial shock of seeing who rang your doorbell, you would ask her to come in! Right?  Unless you immediately fainted at that front door!

What would you say to her?  

Would you have questions to ask her?

Would you just be in awe of her?

Would you ask her if she wanted a cup of coffee or something to eat?

Would you be asking questions about her Son or about St. Joseph?

Would you be asking her about Heaven and your relatives and friends?

Or would you just be embracing her with your heart, a childlike heart?

The other night I received a text from my friend, Debbie, who had attached a Facebook video showing the most incredible scene that I think I’ve ever viewed. It immediately brought tears to my eyes and since then, I have viewed it about a thousand times! More tears have flowed from my eyes and more smiles and “awwhs” have come from my lips! We are given a little lesson in the school of Mother Mary on just how she would like to be embraced by her children.

The video Deb sent me is from Lisa Ladner’s Facebook page and it shows her little daughter Emma Jo walking around their property. All of a sudden, you see little Emma Jo walk right up to a statue of the Blessed Mother and embrace “Mama” with both of her little arms and just hug and hug and hug. She leans her whole head into Mama’s body, almost listening to what was being spoken between the two of them. You hear the wind whipping about in the background but Emma Jo doesn’t lose one moment of the “loving” that was going on between her and the Mother of God.

At one point, Emma Jo, reaches up with her little finger to touch the eye of the statue.  Why did she do that? Maybe little Emma Jo realized quickly that she was gazing directly into the eyes of Mary and wanted to reach out and touch them with her little fingers.

Incredibly soon after that movement, Emma Jo drops to her knees so gracefully and bows her little head as if Mama was blessing her!

WOW, WOW, WOW!  Sorry that I don’t have any other words to describe that moment! It was truly a blessing that this “moment of grace” was recorded for all to see by Lisa Ladner.

Here is the link to the video:

How Can We Embrace Mama as her children? 

Of course, we are grown adults and not little children who can just walk up to a 3 foot statue of the Blessed Mother and just hug her as little Emma Jo did!

This question got me thinking and pondering what would our Heavenly Mother like us to do? How would she like to be hugged in a “spiritual way,” getting as close as we can to her in a physical way here on earth?

Turning this question around in my mind as well as watching the little video of Emma Jo over and over as well, I believe the secret of that “spiritual hug” for us might be found in the following:


Listening With The Ears of Our Heart – Rule of St. Benedict
“There is an “Art of Listening” and in that art –
there is truly the “Art of Loving.”

I realized little Emma Jo and St. John the Beloved had something in common. St. John the Beloved laid his head down on the chest of Jesus listening to the heart of Jesus beat and Emma Jo laid her head on the statue of the Blessed Mother. It seemed to me that she was listening and in that listening she dropped to her knees.



Didn’t the Blessed Mother do that very well?  She pondered everything in her heart and truly listened and acted on it. Little Emma Jo listened and acted upon what her little heart heard. St. John the Beloved “listened” and “loved.”

“There’s a lot of difference between
listening and hearing”
G.K. Chesterton
Mirror Her Virtues

In this beautiful month of May, Mary’s month, maybe we can begin to “mirror our Mama’s virtues” and give her that “spiritual hug” that she is longing for.

One day, recently as I entered my living room, the sun was just resting its rays on the statue of Our Lady of Fatima on the mantle. I knew I had to capture that look as she was showing me one of her secrets. Her huge eyes seemed to be lost in contemplation and silence. The gaze I was able to see was what was reflected from within her.

I thought it a great lesson for me! In that  teaching moment, I realized she was showing me I had to be silent as well; To enter into silence as little Emma Jo did and just place the “ear of my heart” to the presence of God in my life at each and every moment. To truly listen and hear! To enter into silence and listen and then be able to act.

There is a piece of scripture from James 1:24-25 that also has a “mirror image” that we can reflect on:

To listen to the word and not obey is like looking at your own features in a mirror and then, after a quick look, going off and immediately forgetting what you looked like. But the man who looks steadily at the perfect law of freedom and makes that his habit – not listening and then forgetting, but actively putting into practice – will be happy in all that he does.”

There is a song, Looking for Love (In All the Wrong Places), but we can be “listening, in all the wrong places” as well. We are deluged by constant chatter and distractions keeping us from the silence within. If we are silent within, then we can be ready to “listen” not only to God and what He is asking of us but to be true listeners to each other. There is another saying that goes something like this, “Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then “wait” to hear the answer!”

Wouldn’t this be the perfect “Mother’s Day Gift” to “Mama Mary” this month of May?

To Mirror One of Her Virtues – “To Listen” 

 To truly listen with the ears of our hearts!

To Our God and to All Those We Encounter Each New Day

A Special Thank You to

Lisa and Emma Jo Ladner



Happy Mother’s Day Mama!
Happy Mother’s Day to All!


©2019 Anita Guariglia

Photo Credits/Blessed Mother/ Roses/Anita Guariglia

Beach Scene/

Scripture/Jerusalem Bible – Reader’s Edition