When you were a child, and you would be playing outside, sometimes you would trip and fall and scrape your knee. To a child that hasn’t experienced very much physical pain in their life yet, that injury is almost unbearable. You might cry and you would run to your mom for consolation. And she would open her arms and hug you and tell you that it was okay. She would clean and dress your wounds and send you back out into the world to conquer another day.
Or maybe you remember trips to the store with your mom where you would pass something that you wanted so badly and you would turn to her, pleadingly. You would grab her hand and look up into her eyes, petitioning for that new bike or that popular toy or that cool shirt. And regardless of whether she purchased it for you or not, you knew deep down that she was doing it because it was best for you. She’s your mother: She knows you better than yourself.
We should have that same relationship with Our Blessed Mother Mary. As we grow up, the relationship with our earthly parents changes, but to Our Lady, we will always be her little sons and daughters. She will always be there to protect us, give us refuge, and guide us to her Son, Jesus Christ. One of the most appropriate prayers for devotion to Mary is the Memorare:
Remember O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone that fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins, my mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Amen.
That first sentence says it all. Never was it known that anybody who sought Mary’s intercession was left unaided. We acknowledge our imperfections, our sins against God, just as we apologize to our mother when we offend her. And sometimes we might hesitate to ask something of our earthly mothers when we have done something wrong. But regardless of our faults, we go to Our Lady, humbled and mortified, aware that she will not leave us unanswered if we ask for her help. Despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Like a child to their mother.
It doesn’t matter if you’re asking for help to get through the day, help to deal with a difficult person, or, God be with you, help to survive a dangerous or life-threatening situation. One of Mary’s titles is Queen of Martyrs because she had the God-given strength to withstand her Seven Sorrows and the Passion of Our Lord. “Holy Mother, Queen of Martyrs, intercede for all those suffering in the name of your Son.” (Fr. Juan Velez, Mary, Queen of Martyrs) She is a bastion for the desolate and dejected.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
Let us all return to the arms of our mothers and use the tools that she has given us to grow closer to her Son and grow closer to eternal life with Him in heaven.
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