Mary Mother of the Eucharist
Mary Immaculate Conception,
Mary Mother of the Eucharist
This year the novena of our community in preparation of the feast of the Immaculate Conception had a character of study, reflection and prayer. The bishop made us know one of the principal documents of the Church, "De Ecclesia", decree of the Second Vatican Council and he pointed up the importance not only of knowing the Bible and the letters of God, but also of learning the teachings of the Church which are contained in its official documents.
Our study was concentrated upon the eigth chapter of the document cited above, where are contemplated Our Lady's figure and mission in the divine plan of salvation. The comprehension of the text has been facilitated by all that we have learnt in our spiritual walk through the catechesis, the biblical catechesis and the private revelation.
The document begins so: "Since God most merciful and sapient wanted to redeem the world, "when the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman so that we might receive adoption as sons" (Gal 4, 4-5). For us men and for our salvation He came down from Heaven and made flesh through the action of the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary's womb. This divine mystery of salvation is revealed to us and it is continued in the Church, that the Lord made as his body and in which the faithful, who accept Christ the Head and are in communion with all its saints, also have to venerate the memory first of all of the glorious ever virgin Mary, Mother of God and Our Lord Jesus Christ.
In fact the Virgin Mary, who at the announcement of the angel welcame in her heart and body the Verb of God and brought the life to the world, is recognized and honored as true Mother of God, the Redeemer. Redeemed in a sublime way, in sight of the merits of her Son ".
So it is affirmed that Christ is the supreme Head of the Church and is laid emphasis on Our Lady's figure who was the first redeemed creature: to her have been applied in anticipation the merits of the passion, death and resurrection of the Son. In this is refulgent the full, total, complete freedom of God who, since He has no space-time limits, applied in anticipation to the Mother the merits of the Son. So Mary was conceived without the original sin and full of grace. This is the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, proclaimed by Pius IX in 1854 and confirmed by Our Lady herself in Lourdes when, appearing in 1858 to Bernadette, she said: "I am the Immaculate Conception".
The conciliar document continues pointing out the immense grace which is characteristic of Mary: " for this gift of eminent grace she precedes by far all the other creatures of Heaven and Earth". Our Lady, even having human nature, is superior in grace to all the human and angelic creatures. The overall grace of all creatures is inferior to Mary's grace. All her qualities are immensely developed: intelligence, comprehension, will, sensitivity, introspection, mystic union and dialogue with God. Humanly we can't describe exactly Our Lady's figure, because the great deal of grace, gifts and charisms she had from God exceedes our capacity of understanding and expression. In the document is written about the role of the Blessed Virgin in the plan of salvation: "The books of the New and Old Testament and the venerable Tradition show more and more clearly the role of the Mother of the Saviour in the economy of salvation and they put it nearly in front of our eyes. The books of the Old Testament describe the history of salvation, where slowly is prepared the coming of Christ into the world. And these first documents, as they are read in the Church and understood in the light of a further and full revelation, step by step more and more clearly put in light the figure of a woman: the Mother of the Redeemer.
In this passage of the decree Mary is defined "woman": Jesus called his mother this way in two extremely significative moments of his life: at the beginning of the performance of miracles, signs of his divinity, on the occasion of the wedding of Cana (John 2,4) and in the crucial and dramatic moment of his death on the cross (John 19,26). He used a word of extreme respect, Mary is pre-eminently woman, she developed at the maximum all that is part of the female reality: emotions, feelings, affections, virtues, grace, sacrifice, immolation.
Mary consecrated all herself to God: "So Mary, Adam's daughter, agreeing to the divine word, became Mother of Jesus and embracing with all her soul and without the weight of any sin, the salvific will of God, She consecrated all herself as maid of the Lord to the person and the work of her Son, serving the mystery of redemption under Him and with Him, with the grace of the almighty God". Mary has consecrated herself totally, completely and with intelligence since the moment she had the use of reason, that is since the first instant of her conception and she renewed this consecration in the day of her presentation at the temple. The consecration to God was the first act that Our Lady did as human being, because she knew she would have cooperated with the Son of God for the Redemption.
During her life on the Earth Our Lady suffered Jesus' passion and stigmata. She accepted not only this suffering, but she also asked for it explicitly.
In the book of Our Lady's life written by Marisa and Mons. Claudio, we read: "Mary is the Mother united with the Divine Son in love and suffering; so we shouldn't be astonished that she asked and obtained to take part in the suffering of her Son Jesus. During the passion, she suffered not only morally due to the cruel sufferings of her Son (sufferings that she could see, because she was next to Jesus invisibly in bilocation), but she also lived physically on her virginal body the same sufferings of the Redeemer; so she herself is coredemptrix".
Moreover, still through the private revelation, we know this suffering continues even today, because each time Our Lady comes to the Earth she enters to be part of the mystic body, whose Head is Christ and whose heart is Mary. The mystic body is an eartly reality, but it has a marvellous projection in heaven; all those united with Christ through the grace belong to it. When Our Lady appears she comes from the happiness of Paradise and enters the unhappiness of the Earth. In God's letter of 31st december 2000 she said: "Sometimes, from the human point of view, I have not the courage of coming to the Earth, because I come as a creature of the Earth and I suffer when I see many injustices, many wickednesses, when I see how many beloved children of mine don't love Jesus. I think about this in the Paradise, next to God, but then I say: I must go to my children, I must go to encourage them and also to suffer with them". The bishop made us notice that is sublime this acceptation of the suffering on behalf of the Mother of the Eucharist who could stay in the joy of Paradise and instead she withdraws from it, pushed by her immense love towards her children and she comes to the Earth.
In the conciliar decree it is affirmed that Mary has always been united with the Son in the realization of the plan of salvation: "This union of the Mother with the Son in the redemption shows itself from the moment of the virginal conception of Christ until his death; and first of all when Mary hurriedly went to visit Elizabeth who proclaimed her blessed due to her faith in the realization of the words of the Lord" (Luke 1,45). Our Lady made an action dictated by complete love: she ran to help her cousin Elizabeth. The presence of Jesus in her virginal womb sanctified John the forerunner. The bishop explained to us that in this event the Lord wanted to reveal to us a truth that unfortunately today is disregarded: man is sanctified by God only if he is united with Mary and accepts her presence in his life. In fact she makes the Lord present, who is immensely and infinitely more important. Mary is the path that leads to Christ, to live a strong and full of love relationship with Him.
When Jesus was born, He passed through Mary's womb, like a sun ray that passes through a very pure crystal without breaking it; we read in the decree: " then in the nativity when the Mother of God showed with happiness to the shepherds and the Magi her first-born Son, who didn't diminish her virginal integrity, but consecrated it". Christ didn't injure Our Lady's virginity at all, but passing through her womb, He lay down on her arms.
The bishop made us notice that this image reminds the one of the Eucharist that lay down many times on Marisa's hands; when we receive Jesus the Eucharist in communion He entrusts himself to us. Thinking about this image our hands should form a little throne of love in which Jesus can lie down and we should receive the Eucharist trying to have in our heart a part of the love that Mary had towards her Son when she clasped Him. In the Eucharist show themselves the apparent weakness and the omnipotence of God: the apparent weakness because He entrusts himself voluntarily to us and the divine omnipotence because when He enters inside us He makes us fervent, strong and generous. Christ, who is in our hands, first put himself in his mother's hands.
Christ chose Mary to make himself flesh, He wanted a woman as mother, so wherever is Jesus, Mary is there; wherever is the Eucharist, the Mother of the Eucharist is there. In the document is written: "Only one is our Mediator, according to the apostle's words: "For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all" (1 Tim 2, 5-6). The motherly function of Mary towards men doesn't obscure or diminish in any way this unique mediation of Christ, but shows its efficacy. Since each wholesome influence of the Blessed Virgin towards men doesn't originate from a necessity, but from God's consent and issue from the superabundance of Christ's merits, it is funded upon his mediation, on this absolutely depends and gets all its efficacy". Here it is affirmed that it is clear and expressed Lord's will that Our Lady is welcome by everybody as Mother of the Church. Mary's motherhood which is extended to all men, is officially decreed and recognized by God at the foot of the cross, when Christ is going to die and calling "woman" his mother, He gives her to all mankind.
Christ is mediator because He is God and man and Mary is mediatrix because she is Mother of God and our mother. The bishop explained to us that Mary is our mediatrix at God and we can address her with trust and familiarity. We need to feel her motherly warmth due to our weakness and human imperfections; Christ is next to us and loves us immensely, but when we are in front of Him we must adore Him. Mary lives next to us, so we must try to develop our relationship with her in order to live it every day more and more strongly and deeply. In fact, in the conciliar document we find: "And this Mary's motherhood in the economy of grace, has lasted without pauses since the moment of the consent given faithfully at the announciation and kept without hesitations under the cross until the perpetual completion of all the elect. In fact when she was assumed into heaven, she didn't give up this function of salvation, but through her mainfold intercession she keeps on granting to us the graces of the eternal health". The bishop pointed up that Mary's intercession is so powerful at God that sometimes she was able to modify the divine plans. Our Lady obtained to anticipate the beginning of Christ's miracles on the occasion of the wedding of Cana and, as Pius XII affirmed, she accelerated the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles gathered in the cenacle. Her intercession that manifested itself in a so strong and powerful way, never ceased, but continues. Mary was crowned by the Lord Queen of Heaven and Earth and this means that God voluntarily put his own omnipotence in Our Lady's hands. So the bishop invited our community to pray the Mother of the Eucharist so that she intercedes at God in order to anticipate the realization of his plans and he affirmed that Mary's intercession is an everlasting reality that unfortunately has been forgotten; our community, as a member of the Church, must try to make this intercession strong, effecacious and working in the Church itself.
The bishop concluded the novena affirming: "Our Lady's Immaculate Conception in function of the divine motherhood is a dogma of faith and an other one will be added to this: Mary coredemptrix and mediatrix.
In Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, are contained all the gifts and privileges that God gave to his Mother.
These are bright lights that enlighten the Church. When man causes difficulties and puts some obstacles preventing the light from reaching the Earth, then he falls in confusion and sin; but if the obstacles are removed, the light hits the Earth and reaches all corners. When man doubted about the eucharistic presence, the Church became poor; on the contrary when he went towards the Eucharist as finally is happening today, the Church has begun to be really strong and renewed. We must love the Mother of the Eucharist, who made possible this infinite gift of God which is perpetuated in the Church. In Christ's blood that came out of the Eucharist, brought by Our Lady, there is the scent and the taste of Mary's motherly blood. We must love the Mother of the Eucharist and all our brothers, the living ones and the dead ones, because the Eucharist is real presence of God and in God are present all creatures".