Saturday, May 1, 2010

Holy Mama! It's May!

So, it's May! You know what that means...not only that we can all jump for joy that the crazy stormy April is finished, but that spring has sprung and it's a new start and it's a beautiful new month, new season, new start.  May is also, in Catholic life, a month devoted to Mary. By which I mean, it's all about the mama.
 
Classic photo from 1938.  Hugo Adolf Bernatzik
http://www.flickr.com/photos/haabet/ / CC BY-SA 2.0
No, not only all about me (which of course, it always is!) but even more so, May is all about our Blessed Mom, Mary.  She is the one that I look to this month, today in a bit of needy plea (it's been a tough week), to give me example of how to do all this mom stuff right.  I look to her to see how to really love, to model humility for me (stop laughing, I know I know, better than anyone  how desperately I need that one), to model kindness and patience and just, baseline, real, love.

Joss van Cleve, Madonna and Child (see even baby Jesus was awfully busy!)

You know that it gets all tangled up too, that love stuff. It gets knotted up in needs and wants and crises and pushing and pulling of all sorts: worldly, culturally, friendly, husbandly (Is that a word? It is today).  My dear pal Sonja writs eloquently on this very thing here, today, in honor of today's feast of St. Joseph the worker.  Go, read.  It's so worth it.  (Sorry St. Joseph, not trying to slight you, but Sonja does a much better write up.)


But this month we honor Mary.  It's her month.  Because May brings new growth, literally, all around us.  So too, does Mary.  Without her fiat, her humble acceptance of a surprising radical challenge to love, we wouldn't even have a chance to know the truest Love.  She is the spring of our faith, our hearts and their growth too.  She tends and nurtures our hearts through her prayers so that we can grow and bloom and come closer to the truest Love, her Son.  She is "everymom," it's too easy to forget that, that while she is unique and selected particularly to be the earthly mom of Christ himself, she is also us, in the trenches, mom to this beautiful hard hurting but glorious world.

After this past week, I figure I am at the baby sprout stage of loving.  I could easily have been mistaken for a weed, oh, even this morning.  So, I am looking to Mary, my Blessed Mother, and asking for her prayers to humble my stubborn selfish self, to grow my ability to love, and to pray me into a bloom of some sort, someday.

In the meantime, I hope to get back to a steady consistent daily rosary (lost too often in the shuffle of some insane days) this month, and to pay more attention to the best mom and mom-model I know:  Mary. 


"The mood of springtime informs the church's interior; nature's
blossoming, the warm air of May evenings, human gladness in
a world that is renewing itself -- all these things enter in.
Veneration of Mary has its place in this very particular
atmosphere, for she, the Virgin, shows us faith under its
youthful aspect, as God's new beginning in a world that has
grown old. In her we see the Christian life set forth as a youth-
fulness of the heart, as beauty and a waiting readiness for
what is to come."
-- Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Seek That Which is Above
(Ignatius, 1986), pp. 95-96.
{quote h/t wff.org}

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