Two old priests were talking to each other, recollecting their lives in the priesthood. One of them said, “You know, the good die young, the smart ones leave, and here we are.”
Perhaps similar thoughts were in the minds of the disciples as they gathered to reminisce years after the Ascension of the Lord. Obviously they experienced difficulties. Demons got in the way. Wherever the Lord’s work is done, demons will not be far behind. Satan wants to block the way of those who desire to spread the Gospel. However, we are never alone. God works through us. His grace is active when we want to cooperate with His plan. Have you ever been speaking about the faith and said something and you wonder, “Where did that come from?” Or asked a question and out comes the answer that surprised you? God’s grace has brought the Church to the present and will continue to sustain Her in spite of human weakness. Neither serpents, deadly drink nor demons can stop evangelization. Just like the first disciples, we are challenged to mature in our Faith. They depended on Jesus, especially after the Resurrection. Everything began to make sense. With the promise of immortality, the disciples felt invincible. But then Jesus went away. Since the Lord said that He would return, they came back to the same place every day and waited. After days, weeks, months had passed they concluded that Jesus was not coming back any time soon. So they got to work. Countless suffered martyrdom. Suffering is nothing new to anyone who wants to follow Jesus Christ. Suffering and discipleship are almost synonymous.
After more than 2,000 years of Christianity the world is still not ready to listen to the message of freedom. Jesus came to tell us that we are loved without conditions—that God is like a Daddy—that there is nothing that we can do to earn His love. Jesus associated with the rejected of society—the prostitutes, lepers, tax collectors. He caused scandal to those who were not willing to look beyond the letter of the law. Freedom is difficult to handle when all we’ve known are the walls of a cage. Laws enslave us and give us a false sense of being in control. Love frees us to see the beauty of people who are different—not my words, but those of St. Paul. St. Paul touched people beyond the boundaries of his Jewish religion. He is known as the “Apostle”—the greatest preacher because He preached by example.
Mothers are sort of like that. If we can dare to compare our mothers to St. Paul. They too have tried to teach us by example. The majority of us learned our first prayers from our mothers. They took the time to show us how to make the sign of the cross, to recite the Our Father and the Hail Mary. Mothers also wiped tears, noses, and other stuff when we depended on them for basic needs. Although fathers are important, no one can deny the bond between a mother and her infant. We celebrate the gift of motherhood. God in His mercy designed the heart of a mother to be gentle, open to forgive, patient to listen. The Blessed Mother is our model of holiness. We all want to be like her, but mothers have a head start, simply because they share the mystery of having given birth. Just like Jesus ascended into heaven, we too hope to be taken up with Him. Therefore, we remember all the Mamas who already sleep in the peace of eternity. We carry a little piece of them in our heart and will never forget all that they did for us.
Congratulations on your vocation ladies. Teach the young ones to follow in the steps of Our Lady. Motherhood is here to stay and we thank God because all life comes from Him.