Mary, My Son, and Faith
Faith doesn’t have to be this abstract thing. It can be very real. During this season of Lent, I have reflected on how Mary must have felt as her son was taken into custody, ridiculed, tortured, and ultimately put to death. I tried to put myself in her place and imagine how I would feel if that was my son. I would have been tremendously proud of him and treasured his wisdom and the impact he had on the people. But as I reflected more on Mary and Jesus, I immediately experienced a feeling of terrible fear, wanting to protect my son and knowing I couldn’t. A mother’s instinct is to do everything in her power to make sure nothing bad happens to her children. I cannot comprehend losing my son, and to watch it happen. I felt Mary’s pain and experienced terrible, terrible grief. For me, the Passion Story will never be the same. Before, I believed just words. But now, it has taken on a different perspective as I feel and experience my faith.
"Mary was obliged to stand at the deathbed of her son but could offer him no relief. She longed to clasp him in her arms to comfort him and to let him die there, but she could do nothing. Her sorrows were increased when she heard him complain that even his Father had abandoned him. She longed to help him, but could not" (adapted from The Glories of Mary by Saint Alphonsus Liguori).
My good friend Brother Secundo also experiences the Passion in a personal way. He wrote a series of reflections on Lent and the Passion and offered a wonderful explanation of how we can all make this season more meaningful in our lives.