Hello readers! I just wanted to say how excited I am to be contributing to CBC’s blogspot, and I sincerely hope that my musings are of some good use to you all (or y’all as we say down South)!
I couldn’t think of a better way to start this blog than by writing about Mary. Mary, the Mirror of Truth, Seat of Wisdom, and Mystical Rose, is not only sensitive to the role alcoholic beverages play in building community (shout out to her helping save the party at Cana), but she is also the Queen and Patroness of the New Evangelization. The CBC strives to create “good, true and beautiful” communities, and spread the cause of the New Evangelization to our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. So who better to talk about then someone who is not only the spiritual mother of us all, but who is also the patroness of our chief cause? Yes, she is a “cool mom”.
Anyway, my point is that if Mary is so perfectly suited to help us in our mission, why wouldn’t we do everything we could to work with her to achieve our goals? I mean, it kind of seems like a no-brainer, right? My suggestion is that the best way for us to accomplish this is by consecrating ourselves to her. By making a consecration of ourselves to Mary, we form a very intentional and lasting bond that is highly formative not only to us (our chances of sainthood basically skyrocket), but to others as well.
Now, I know what some of you may the thinking. “But what if I don’t have a very good relationship with Mary?” “Consecration sounds kind of intense, do I really want to commit myself to that?” “Won’t that be detracting from giving myself totally to Christ??” Let me assure you, I have asked myself all of these questions and more at some point or another. But, trust me, we can get through this. Yes, by consecrating ourselves we create a partnership with her that is life changing. And yes, I realize that in today’s society such a commitment may be misunderstood or even feared by those who do not fully understand what it means. But as Catholics, we are called to live and believe in a radical faith—one that brings the dead back to life, turns bread and wine into the body and blood of our Savior, and finds fullness in sacrificing everything for the sake of others. It doesn’t make sense if you view it with a worldly mentality. How can one find freedom in slavery? But when it’s cast in the light of our faith, we can see the beauty in living our life for someone else, and placing ourselves at the mercy of our sweet and loving mother.
As you are reading this, I will actually be on my third day of preparation for my reconsecration to Mary. When I was very young I made my consecration, but every year I renew it on my “anniversary date”, December 8th, the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. This annual renewal isn’t required, but it helps me to grow closer to Mary and also reminds me of what an immense blessing her love and motherhood are to my life. In the beginning it wasn’t easy for me to have a close relationship with Mary, but through this consecration I have been able to work on entrusting my cares to her, and striving to follow her example of what it means to say “yes” to God’s plan. She has helped soften my heart and increase my joy and capacity to love others. What a beautiful influence she brings to our lives when we invite her to!
With how busy and hectic life is, I’ve chosen to renew my consecration with the help of a “short & sweet” book called, “33 Days to Morning Glory” by Fr. Michael Gaitely. With a daily reading of only a few paragraphs, this book outlines what it truly means to be consecrated to Mary and provides some beautiful reflections from various “Greats” such as JPII and Mother Teresa. It is also (in my humble opinion) the Perfect companion to a hot cup of coffee in the morning!
During my preparation for this blog, I came across a passage by Mother Teresa that really captured the Why behind consecrating one’s self to Mary and why having a relationship with her is so important. So I thought I should share it with you. She writes:
“[Our Lady’s] Role is to bring you face to face… With the love in the heart of Jesus crucified.”
After reflecting on this quote for some time, I have several thoughts I would like to submit to you:
- A devotion to Mary does not detract from our devotion and adoration of God. Instead, it gets us a spiritual “fast pass” to the feet of her Son, Christ Crucified.
- An enslaving of our lives to Mary is not a burden, or a denial of our freedom. Rather, it brings us to the very font of love that we so desire, and makes us privy to the abundant graces we so desperately need in our quest to become saints.
- If we rely on Mary’s help, we too will be able to bring our fellow brothers and sisters “face to face with the love in the heart of Jesus crucified”.
To me, this final thought seems to be the crux of the New Evangelization, and what the CBC strives for. We are called to radiate Christ’s love to others with immense joy and tenderness. By doing so, we hope to influence others in such a way that they will see the truth of the Gospel and be made new by the Blood of the Lamb. It becomes abundantly clear that by consecrating ourselves to Mary we then hold the key to succeeding in our mission. By this, she guides and teaches us to grow closer to her Son so that we in turn, may “go out to all nations” spreading the Good News of Christ.
Till next time,