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Mary free from herself

Mary, free from herself

Mary in her humility, knows she receives everything from God. She is therefore, free from herself, completely oriented toward God and others. Mary Immaculate does not look on herself. This is true humility: not looking on oneself, but looking toward God and others.

Today too, God wants to do great things with us in our daily lives: that is, in our families, at work, in everyday environments. God’s grace loves to operate there more than in great historical events. But do we believe this? Or do we think that holiness is a utopia, something for insiders, a pious illusion incompatible with ordinary life?

Let us ask Our Lady for a grace: that she may free us from the misleading idea that the Gospel is one thing and life is another; that she kindle our enthusiasm for the ideal of holiness which is not a matter of holy cards and images, but is about living what happens each day, humbly and joyfully, like Our Lady, free from ourselves, with our eyes fixed on God and the neighbour we meet.

Let us not lose heart: The Lord has given everyone what it takes to weave holiness within our everyday life! And when we are assailed by the doubt that we cannot succeed, or the sadness of not being adequate, let us allow ourselves to be looked upon by the “merciful eyes” of Our Lady, for no one who has asked for her help has ever been abandoned!

[Extract from Pope Francis, speaking at the Angelus on the ‘Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary’,  8 December 2021].

This is what Mary teaches

I think of the Virgin Mary, who also travelled, in order to visit Elizabeth: “Mary set out and went with haste” (Lk 1:39). We might ask, why did Mary set out and go with haste to visit her cousin? Certainly, Mary had just learned that Elizabeth was pregnant, but so was she; so why go, if no one had asked her to?

Mary does something that was not asked of her, and that she did not have to do. Mary goes because she loved, and “whoever loves flies, runs and rejoices” (The Imitation of Christ, III, 5).

That is what love does to us.  This is what Mary’s life teaches us.

O Mary, our Immaculate Mother,
On your feast day we come to you,
We do not come alone:
We bring with us all those  your Son has entrusted to us.

We bring to you, Mother,
Especially those who are alone, abandoned,suffering.
All who are in need of your immaculate gaze.

Help us to rediscover the ability to look upon all persons
With respect, compassion and love.

We are in need of your immaculate heart,
To know how to live and to love freely.

We thank you, Mother, because in showing yourself to us
You remind us that what comes first is the grace of God,
The love of Jesus your Son, who gave his life for us.



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