Mary is forever associated with "the
fullness of time", the particular moment in salvation history when the Father
sent Jesus into the world through her to be our ransom from sin and death. In
this fullness of time, Jesus and Mary fully embraced the Father's will, fully
cooperated, and freely and fully consented to what the Father asked of them.
Jesus is the only Son of God and our saving victim. Mary is his Mother and
unique co-sufferer. There was a unified suffering and purpose shared between
Mary is also forever associated with
the "hour" of the offering of the Lamb on the altar of the cross: The hour of
supreme love, the hour of superlative sacrifice. Calvary is both the "source
and summit" of Mary's seven swords of sorrow, and the further fulfilling of
Luke 1:38 for her in this life. At the wedding feast of Cana, Jesus tells Mary,
"My hour has not yet come" (John 2:4). On Calvary, when his hour had arrived,
Mary shared it with him. The hourof the
Lamb is also the hour of the "woman". As Adam and Eve shared in the same
forbidden fruit, the "New Adam" and "New Eve" shared in the same sword.
Together, they united in a shared suffering at the dramatic "hour" of Calvary.
There, what Jesus suffered in his body Mary suffered in her heart. She desires
to unite intercessors to her "hour"--her willful, loving participation in the
offering of the Lamb.
As Jesus labored on the cross for the
new creation, Mary experienced the labor pains in her heart. Adam and Eve were
partners, willing collaborators, in the birth of sin. On Calvary the New Adam
and New Eve were partners in putting sin to death , and in the birthing of new
life. Standing by the altar of the cross, Mary, who had given birth to Jesus
without the pains of childbirth, was to endure the greatest of pains in
bringing forth the Church to new life (see Collection of Masses of the
Blessed Virgin Mary,vol. 1; P12, p. 121):
"Mary intensely and mysteriously
united her life with Christ's sorrowful mission. She was to become her Son's
faithful co-worker for the salvation of the human race" (John Paul II.
General audience, Dec. 18, 1996).
time of Calvary, Mary was the Mother of Jesus. On Golgotha she received a new
motherhood as well: "Mother of the Church". This new revelation of her true
identity was made known to Mary in the midst of great suffering. On Calvary she
gave up the body of Jesus, and received the "New Mystical Body" of her Son. On
Calvary there was a visible death in humanity and an invisible new life in the
birth of the Mystical Body of Christ. Thisoffers intercessors insight into the connection between heart piercings
and spiritual parenting. Mary's swords of sorrow help to form and mature an
intercessor's heart to "hold" and pray for many peoples and situations.
The song writer asks the question,
"Were you there when they crucified my Lord?" No one--not John the beloved, nor
the other women who were present on Golgotha--can answer this question as
affirmatively as Mary can. For, she was present on Calvary as Mother of Jesus
and as the New Eve, the woman. As intercessors we collaborate in salvation by
our prayer and sacrifice after the event of Calvary has already taken place.
Mary's involvement was quite different:
"She cooperated during the event
itself...She also was associated in this way with the redemptive sacrifice
that merited the salvation of all...In union with Christ and in submission to
him, she collaborated in obtaining the grace of salvation of all humanity"
(John Paul II. General Audience of April 9, 1997; p. 185-186).
participation in our redemption is "a unique and unrepeatable fact" (JP II.
Ibid; p. 186); "She was inside the same suffering. She was the first of
those who "share Christ's suffering" (Rom. 8:17)" (Mary Mirror of the Church.
Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa; p. 100). Mary is at the very center of the
offering of the Lamb. She desires to take intercessors, formed in her
heart, "inside" the mystery of the cross.
aspect of my life needs to be brought into deeper conformity with the heart of
do I need growth in my ability to 'spiritually parent' others?
Any scripture from the text; John 12:27; John 17:1; John
19:26-27; Rev. 12: 1-2
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