The Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God – Cycle C
One Christmas Eve, while on pilgrimage to Israel, my husband and I took a memorable walk to Bethlehem from Shepherd’s Field. This is the field that remembers the sacred place where the shepherds—that group who were considered so unclean that their testimony was not honored in court—saw the angel, who entrusted to them the greatest news in the history of the world. Then the heavens opened and they saw “a multitude of the heavenly host” praising God.
Ben and I decided to follow their footsteps from Shepherd’s Field that Christmas Eve afternoon. We “went in haste” those three miles, which gradually got steeper as they led to the Church of the Nativity. Breathless and with hearts bursting, we entered the church which, at Midnight Mass in ten hours, would be packed with pilgrims from around the world. But at this moment we were alone. We climbed down the dark stairs that led to the ancient cave where the shepherds found “Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.” Then those shepherds, those “outlaws”, testified to them what they had been told about Jesus.
What peace we felt there in that cave on that Christmas Eve. As we walked out into the December chill we promised to increase our own testimony of Jesus, and to work harder for peace on earth, and goodwill towards all.
Are there places in your heart that can’t embrace a God who has love for all people?
What would YOU like to say about this question, or today’s readings, or any of the columns from the past year? The sacred conversations are setting a Pentecost fire! Register here today and join the conversation.
I have come to light a fire on the earth; how I wish it were already burning (Lk.12:49).
I just learned of this site from “Give Us This Day.” I look forward to joining in. I do believe that God has unconditional love for all people, but there are places in my heart (but not in my mind!) that find it difficult to accept that God loves me. I take comfort in knowing that God knows our hearts and pray that I may fully accept His love for me.
I am newly converting to Catholicism and only last month discovered Give us this Day. I love the book and enjoyed the heart expressed in Kathy McGoverns “Waiting and Watching” story.
How would it be if Jesus was to come today to me?? My mind is afraid to imagine such a thing although I long for it. I long too for the Kingdom of God to come on earth to see and feel radical love outpoured every day, one to another. I hear God saying, “Begin my daughter, begin for I am with you already.” I dream the dream but find it hard to walk the walk.
Together we can. If you will love unconditionally I will too
I call those places my ‘darkness’ and I truly believe that in God’s infinite mercy and love, He does love me and others, despite our failings. And for me, there is peace in knowing that and I just continue to pray for His mercy.
On this wonderful feast of The Solemnity of Mary, what comfort there is in knowing and believing she is the Mother of us all; and what an example to follow and ask for her intercession when I fail to be the mother I should be to my children or grandchildren. Thank you, Lord, for sharing Her with us.