Monday, January 01, 2007

Notes on the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God.

On this first day of the year, the Roman Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. Coming seven days after Christmas, today's feast continues the Church's celebration of the Nativity of Jesus Christ by recognizing Mary's unique role as Theotokos, the one who bore God within her womb. As today's readings remind us, the Son of God came into the world as the Son of Mary, becoming part of a particular human family and entering into a particular cultural tradition. As one "born under the law" of Israel (Gal 4:4), on the eighth day after his birth the Son of Mary received the name of Jesus, "the name given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb." (Lk 2:21)

As the day on which the naming of Jesus is remembered, this Solemnity is also the titular feast of the Society that bears the name of Jesus. Today, we pray in thanksgiving for Mary's acceptance of her special vocation and for her constant role as a prayerful intercessor on behalf of God's people. As a Jesuit, I also pray today that Mary will continue to watch over the Society named for her Son. I'd also like to take this opportunity to ask you to pray for the novices of the Society, many of whom will be making their Long Retreat during this month of January. I hope you'll pray in a special way for the first-year novices of the Chicago and Detroit Provinces, whom I had a chance to spend some time with these past few days at our bi-province formation conference. My brief experience with our new primi gives me a great sense of hope and optimism for the future of this least Society, and I'm proud to call them my brothers. So please join me in praying for Matt, Christopher, Hung, Cyril and Christian as they enter into the wonderful and ineffable experience of the Spiritual Exercises. AMDG.


Post a Comment

<< Home