Reflecting Upon The Immaculate Heart Of Mary
Imitate her, O faithful soul. Enter into the deep recesses of your heart so that you may be purified spiritually and cleansed from your sins.” ~ Saint Lawrence Justinian
On the heels of the Celebration of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, today we pause to honor and venerate the woman who carried and nurtured within her womb He who possessed that most sacred of hearts.
The Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary gives us an opportunity to reflect on the interior life of our Blessed Mother. From her joys, her sorrows - one of which was revisited in today’s Gospel - (Luke 2:41-51), her remarkable virtue, her love for God the Father, her maternal love for her son Jesus, and her compassionate and unparalleled love for we her eternal sons and daughters.
Although only one sword is depicted, other more traditional renditions present a heart pierced with seven swords representing the Seven Sorrows of her life.
Roses are considered to be the "queen of flowers" and symbolize Mary as the Queen of Heaven. Roses also depict hidden suffering in their thorny stems and are a connection to Jesus' crown of thorns.
The lily represents Mary's purity as the Virgin Mother of God. This symbol has been used as a symbol of purity in depictions of Mary and other saints for centuries.
Throughout Scripture, the prevailing theme as it pertains to Mary is of course that of motherhood. Mary reminds us what it means to be a mother. Her total devotion to her Son and His ministry. After His death, resurrection and ascension into heaven, she remains so as to give birth to His church, sharing in the Pentecostal moment. When the time was deemed to be right she was assumed bodily into Heaven. It is there where she remains ever Virgin and Queen, our eternal Mother who prays and intercedes for us. By her example, Mary urges us to pursue the gifts of the Holy Spirit, particularly those of wisdom, humility and submission.
Love your Mother as she has loved you.
“Oh heavenly treasurer of all graces, Mother of God and my mother Mary, since you are the first born daughter of the Eternal Father and hold in your hand his omnipotence, be moved to pity my soul and grant me the graces which I fervently ask of you.“ ~ Amen