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- Written by Br. Daniel Thomas, OP
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The Immaculate Heart of the BVM
Isaiah 61:9-11 (or from the day: 1 Kings 19:19-21)
Response verse: 1 Samuel 2:1-8
“Jesus went down…to Nazareth, and was obedient to them: and his mother kept all these things in her heart.”
Today’s litugy, the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the companion feast with yesterday’s feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. But notice: we don’t say, the Sacred Heart of Mary. Why this subtle difference?
Perhaps it’s to help us understand that we, like Mary, must avail ourselves to become holy or sacred. Jesus, as the Son of God, was and always is sacred. The rest of us have to allow God/Jesus to enter into our lives. When the Angel visits Mary her response is, “Let if be done unto me…” and she allows the holiness of God to become real in her life. “And the Word was made flesh.”
In the “Wizard of Oz” the Tin man asks for a heart and Dorthy tells him that it’s the heart that makes you more deeply aware of the pains and sorrows that are all around us. When the “Sons of Thunder” ask to share in the life of Jesus, He asks them, “Do you know what you are asking?”
Mary gave an unqualified answer to the Angel and only later – at the Presentation – was she told, “And a sword will pierce your heart…”
Today’s feast (and yesterday’s) might better be called, “The Compassion of the Hearts of Jesus and Mary.” Even though none of us will attain to the fullness of compassion as Mary did we still need to grasp what it means to say “yes” to Jesus.
When Jesus chides the S & Ps about their absolute following of “The Law” he tells them, “This is the sacrifice that I desire: to have compassion on the poor: the widows and orphans and to lift the burden on those who are downtrodden.
When Mary and Joseph finally find Jesus He asks,“Why are you looking for me?”
Have you ever answered that question? Something to think about! Amen!
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