Raffaello (Raphael) Sanzio da Urbino, The Tempi Madonna, 1508, Alte Pinakothek, Munich
January 1: The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
The Blessed Virgin Mary is honored with many titles. The Missionary Oblates honor her with the title of Mary Immaculate. But her oldest title of all is Mother of God, which the Council of Ephesus proclaimed her to be in 431AD.
Today we honor Mary as the human and very real mother who gave birth to Jesus. Because Jesus is One in being with His Father, through the Incarnation God became flesh and dwelled with us as Emmanuel, God is with us.
Mary was very much Jesus’ real mother, being part of his ministry from birth to death. And she is our mother because Jesus gave her to us as he hung on the cross. Therefore, we are the children of God by adoption. “When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son born of a woman… so that we might receive our adoption as children.” Galatians 4:4-5.
I leave you with the The Memorare prayer today, which the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate recite often, seeking our Mother’s intercession to send us co-missionaries and strengthen us in our ministry to help the most poor and abandoned.
Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known
that anyone who fled to thy protection,
implored thy help,
or sought thy intercession,
was left unaided.
Inspired by this confidence
I fly unto thee,
O Virgin of virgins, my Mother.
To thee do I come,
before thee I stand,
sinful and sorrowful.
O Mother of the Word Incarnate,
despise not my petitions,
but in thy mercy hear and answer me.
During this joyous Christmas season, we think about Our Savior who was born to help the poor and most abandoned. Would you please help the Missionary Oblates care for them? God bless you for sharing your gifts!