Thursday, April 20, 2017

Mary, Woman of the Promise:

Mary, Woman of the Promise:  Mary woman of the promise;  Vessel of your people's dreams, Through your open willing Spirit waters of God's goodness streamed.   Mary song of holy wisdom,  Sung before the world began, Faithful to the Word within,  you Carried out God's wondrous plan.  Mary, morning star of justice,  Mirror of the radiant light, In the shadows of life's journey, Be a beacon for our sight.  Mary, woman of the Gospel,  Humble home for treasured seed, Help us to be true disciples Bearing fruit in word and deed.
               Covenants mark all the important encounters between God and man.  God's relationship with Israel was defined by a covenant, as were His relationships with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and David.  Jesus Himself spoke of his redemptive sacrifice as the new covenant in His blood (Lk 22:20).
               In the ancient Near East a covenant was a sacred kinship bond based on a solemn oath that brought someone into a family relationship with another person or tribe.  When God made His covenants with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and David, He was gradually inviting a wider circle of people into His family: first a couple, then a family, then a nation, and eventually the world.
                Therefore, God Himself is Father, Son, and the Spirit of Love-and Christians are drawn up into the life of that family.  In baptism we are identified with Christ, baptized in the Trinitarian name of God; we take on His family name, and thus we become sons in the Son.  We are taken up into the very life of the Trinity, where we may live in love forever. 
               Every family needs a mother; only Christ could choose His own, and He chose for His entire covenant family.  Now, everything He has He shares with us.  His divine life is ours; His home is our home; His Father is our Father; His brothers are our brothers; and His mother is our mother too.
               In the earliest icons of Mary, she is almost always portrayed holding her infant child-forever bearing Him to the world, as in the twelfth chapter of the book of Revelation.  A true mother, she is usually portrayed pointing to her son but looking out toward the viewers, her other children.  She mothers her infant-for an infant cannot hold himself up-even as she mothers her children in the world and draws us together to Him.
               As Mary birthed Christ to the world, so the Church births believers, "other Christs," to each generation.  As the Church becomes mother to believers in baptism, so Mary becomes mother to believers as brothers of Christ.  The Church, as someone once said, "reproduces the mystery of Mary."       ( gathered from Hail, Holy Queen by Scott Hahn)

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