Mary Mother of the Church

Monday 6 June 2022 Mary Mother of the Church Week 10 in Ordinary Time

Genesis 3:9-15,20
After Adam had eaten of the tree the Lord God called to him. ‘Where are you?’ he asked. ‘I heard the sound of you in the garden;’ he replied ‘I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid.’ ‘Who told you that you were naked?’ he asked ‘Have you been eating of the tree I forbade you to eat?’ The man replied, ‘It was the woman you put with me; she gave me the fruit, and I ate it.’ Then the Lord God asked the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’ The woman replied, ‘The serpent tempted me and I ate.’   Then the Lord God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this, ‘Be accursed beyond all cattle, all wild beasts. You shall crawl on your belly and eat dust every day of your life. I will make you enemies of each other: you and the woman, your offspring and her offspring. It will crush your head and you will strike its heel.’ The man named his wife ‘Eve’ because she was the mother of all those who live.

Psalm 86(87)           Of you are told glorious things, O city of God!

John 19:25-34
Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. Seeing his mother and the disciple he loved standing near her, Jesus said to his mother, ‘Woman, this is your son.’ Then to the disciple he said, ‘This is your mother.’ And from that moment the disciple made a place for her in his home. After this, Jesus knew that everything had now been completed, and to fulfil the scripture perfectly he said, ‘I am thirsty.’  A jar full of vinegar stood there, so putting a sponge soaked in the vinegar on a hyssop stick they held it up to his mouth. After Jesus had taken the vinegar he said, ‘It is accomplished’; and bowing his head he gave up his spirit. It was Preparation Day, and to prevent the bodies remaining on the cross during the sabbath – since that sabbath was a day of special solemnity – the Jews asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken away. Consequently, the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with him and then of the other. When they came to Jesus, they found he was already dead, and so instead of breaking his legs one of the soldiers pierced his side with a lance; and immediately there came out blood and water.


On March 3, 2018. Pope Francis decreed that the ancient devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, under the title of ‘Mother of the Church,’ be inserted into the Roman calendar as a Memorial on the day after Pentecost. 

Mary is called an exemplary disciple. She stood at the foot of the cross as Jesus died. Jesus said to her and the beloved disciple, “Women behold your Son” (John 19).  The disciple without a name (the beloved one) represents all of us who follow Jesus. 

More than half a century before Pope Francis, Pope Pius XII perceptively noted Mary’s dual maternity in his encyclical on the Church: he said, “It was she who was there to tend the mystical body of Christ, the church, born of the Saviour’s pierced heart, with the same motherly care that she gave to the child Jesus in the crib.”

Once a year, in May, the secular world celebrates Mother’s Day. Now in June, as we recall the coming of the Holy Spirit, we recall that the spirit came upon her when she conceived. Now that that same Spirit comes upon us as she conceived the church.

Let us continue to pray for that same Spirit in the world today that the Word of God can be see once again through us under Mary’s motherly care. 

Riflessione (italiano):

La festa che celebriamo oggi è legata alla festa di Pentecoste. Secondo la tradizione, la Madre era presente nella stanza superiore quando lo Spirito Santo si posò sugli Apostoli.

Il 3 marzo 2018. Papa Francesco ha decretato che l’antica devozione alla Beata Vergine Maria, sotto il titolo di “Madre della Chiesa”, sia inserita nel calendario romano come memoria il giorno successivo alla Pentecoste.

Maria è definita una discepola esemplare. Stava ai piedi della croce mentre Gesù moriva. Gesù disse a lei e al discepolo amato: “Donne, ecco il vostro Figlio” (Giovanni 19).  Il discepolo senza nome (l’amato) rappresenta tutti noi che seguiamo Gesù.

 Più di mezzo secolo prima di Papa Francesco, Papa Pio XII notò in modo perspicace la duplice maternità di Maria nella sua enciclica sulla Chiesa: disse: “Fu lei a curare il corpo mistico di Cristo, la Chiesa, nata dal cuore trafitto del Salvatore, con la stessa cura materna che diede al bambino Gesù nella culla”.

Una volta all’anno, a maggio, il mondo secolare celebra la festa della mamma. Ora, a giugno, mentre ricordiamo la venuta dello Spirito Santo, ricordiamo che lo Spirito venne su di lei quando concepì. Ora lo stesso Spirito viene su di noi quando lei concepisce la Chiesa.

Continuiamo a pregare per questo stesso Spirito nel mondo di oggi, affinché la Parola di Dio possa essere vista ancora una volta attraverso di noi, sotto la cura materna di Maria.