Mary, Mother of God

Frank Enderle
Reproduced with Permission

Before beginning, I want to take this opportunity to express my wish for you to this New Year. May the Lord bring you ever closer to Him and give you peace and prosperity.

We Catholics gather together every year on this first day of the New Year to celebrate, in community, the Solemnity of Holy Mary, Mother of God. It is through this feast that the Church introduces us to the Divine Motherhood of the Most Holy Virgin. The Gospel tells us that Mary became the mother of Our Lord and Savior by the workings of the Holy Spirit. From that moment on, she had a special relationship with the Holy Trinity that no other human being has ever had. She is, after all, the daughter of God the Father, the spouse of the Holy Spirit and the mother of the Son of God. For that reason alone, she should be venerated and celebrated by all of humanity.

Yes. Mary is the Mother of God and the Mother of all humanity. Yet we should also remember that just as she is also the Mother of the Church which is the Body of Christ. Her mission is inseparable from the Churchs mission which is to bring the Good News of the Birth of Our Lord and Savior to the entire human race. Here I want to make very clear that, despite what some people may say or think our veneration of our Most Beloved Mother in no way casts a shadow on Christ or belittles Him. It is exactly the opposite. Our devotion to the Virgin Mary is linked to our adoration of her Son, Jesus Christ. That the Most Blessed Virgin gave birth to Jesus shows that He truly had a human nature for only human beings are "born of a woman." What this miraculous birth means is that Jesus Christ - who is God - really was born among us, that God really did experience humanity and that by His Cross and Resurrection, God set us free from slavery to sin. It is impossible for devotion to the Mary to distance a Christian from her Son. On our earthly journey she is precisely the shortest road to Him.

Today, besides celebrating the New Year, we also celebrate the World Day of Peace. In this society there are an infinite number of people who are striving to bring about peaceful solutions to violent events. So it is strange for us to see that peace seems to be ever more distant. Everywhere we turn it seems that warfare and injustice are on the rise. Sometimes it seems as if we Christians have forgotten the power of prayer. Today the Church reminds us that while we should continue to work for peace, we must also continue to pray to obtain this great gift from God. So today, as we celebrate the Holy Eucharist, we ask the Queen of Heaven, Mary Most Holy, to intercede for humanity so that we may obtain from her Son, the Prince of Peace, an end to all violence whether on an international, national or personal level.

We have entered into this New Year and all of us fervently hope that it will bring health and peace to us and to our family. We cannot truly call ourselves faithful followers of Christ; we do not deserve to say that we are Christians, if we reject the Virgin Mary. Remember. The shortest road to Jesus is through Mary.