MONDAY, TENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
(Mary, Mother of the Church)
Gn 3:9-15,20 or Acts 1:12-14; Ps 87; Jn 19:25-34
MARY, MOTHER OF THE CHURCH
In 1964, at the close of the Second Vatican Council (1962- 65), Pope Paul VI formally declared Mary as the “Mother of the Church”. The title was first used in the 4th century by Saint Ambrose of Milan. On the day of Pentecost, the apostles, along with Mary, had assembled together in the Upper Room. They were celebrating the Jewish harvest festival when the Holy Spirit descended on all of them. It was the same Holy Spirit that had overshadowed Mary at the Annunciation. Mary had been chosen to be the Mother of our Saviour Jesus Christ. Our Blessed Mother Mary, conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, became Theotokos, i.e., the Mother of God. At Pentecost, the Holy Spirit again came upon her, giving birth to the early church, and the Church became the body of Christ in history.
Back in the fourth century, St Ambrose of Milan proposed Mary as Mother of the Church due to her faith in bringing forth Christ our Lord. Since then, Mary was understood by many early theologians as both the mother of the Head of the Church, Jesus, and also the symbol of the Church par excellence. Mary is called the Mother of the Church, because she’s the Mother of Christ, and the Church is the Mystical Body of Christ. Pope Francis decided to create the new memorial of Mary, Mater Ecclesiae, on Pentecost Monday. On 3rd March, 2018, Pope Francis announced that the Church will celebrate the feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, on the Monday after Pentecost.
All the readings tell us about Mary, the Mother of the Church. The readings remind us about the gracious kindness of God in order to recover the fallen humanity. A gracious promise is made of Christ, through Mary, as the deliverer of fallen man from the power of Satan. A door of hope is opened through Mary.
Response: Of you are told glorious things, O city of God!
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