From our pastor, Father Neil Herlihy
This Sunday we celebrate Mother’s Day and we honor moms in a special way. We remember how much they do for their families and the many sacrifices they make on behalf of their spouse and children. Moms do many ordinary things and they do them extraordinarily well. Primarily through their teaching and their example, they also play a key role in passing down our precious faith to their children.
When we think of mothers, we only have to think of Mary, the mother of Jesus. May is the month of Mary, and this month we honor her in a special way. We call her Queen of Peace, and Our Lady of the Rosary, and bestow upon her many other titles. Mary deserves every one of them because she said “Yes” to God.
In conferring these worthy titles on Mary, we may sometimes forget that she was also a mom. She cooked; she cleaned; she worked. She took care of her husband Joseph and her child Jesus. Mary did the things that moms do. She remained faithful in times of joy and in times of trial and is a model for all moms. She is not only the Mother of Jesus, but also the Mother of our Church. We marvel at her compassion, generosity, and gentleness. The Second Vatican Council teaches that “…By her motherly love, she cares for her Son’s sisters and brothers who still journey the earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led into their blessed home.” In his great encyclical “Evangelium Vitae” (The Gospel of Life), Pope John Paul II reminds us that Mary is “…the incomparable model of how life should be welcomed and cared for.”
As we remember Mary, as disciples rooted in family life, we are invited in a special way to give thanks for our wonderful mothers. Whether we are 15 or 45 or 75, we can still thank them for all that they do, and for the example they set for us. We may continue to honor them primarily by obeying them in our younger years, and by graciously taking care of them in their advancing years, after the many years they have cared for us in so many ways. We can especially thank them for helping us cling to our faith as we go forth as a community of believers on this sometimes difficult but ultimately rewarding journey to eternal life.