Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Recently in a thread on our "Merciful Mother", I posted from an Address by Pope Benedict XVI, and today I want to quote from that same address:
…Indelibly printed in my memory is the moment when, hearing his words: “Mariam Sanctissimam declaramus Matrem Ecclesiae” – “We declare Mary the Most Holy Mother of the Church,” the Fathers spontaneously rose at once and paid homage to the Mother of God, to our Mother, to the Mother of the Church, with a standing ovation.
Indeed, with this title the Pope summed up the Marian teaching of the Council and provided the key to understanding it. Not only does Mary have a unique relationship with Christ, the Son of God who, as man, chose to become her Son. Since she was totally united to Christ, she also totally belongs to us. Yes, we can say that Mary is close to us as no other human being is, because Christ becomes man for all men and women and his entire being is "being here for us."
Christ, the Fathers said, as the Head, is inseparable from his Body which is the Church, forming with her, so to speak, a single living subject. The Mother of the Head is also the Mother of all the Church; she is, so to speak, totally emptied of herself; she has given herself entirely to Christ and with him is given as a gift to us all. Indeed, the more the human person gives himself, the more he finds himself.
The Council intended to tell us this: Mary is so interwoven in the great mystery of the Church that she and the Church are inseparable, just as she and Christ are inseparable. Mary mirrors the Church, anticipates the Church in her person, and in all the turbulence that affects the suffering, struggling Church she always remains the Star of salvation. In her lies the true center in which we trust, even if its peripheries very often weigh on our soul...(underlining is mine)
Yesterday, celebrating Divine Mercy Sunday, I was again aware of how Mary is our perfect Mother and Model. She is the Mother of Mercy Himself, and she shows us how a human person can by God's Grace, be Merciful as our Father is Merciful. The Feast of Mercy is an important Feast for our time. How we need to receive Mercy and to be merciful! Mary, as Benedict says, "mirrors the Church, anticipates the Church in her person." She truly is the Star which guides us in these turbulent times of suffering and struggle. In her we see Christ living and shining in the darkness! Mary, Mother of Mercy and Star of the New Evangelization, pray for us. Jesus, we trust in You!