SPIRITUAL MATERNITY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN AND HER INTERCESSORY POWER
For private use
We have been given great news which is the cause of immense joy.
This announcement did not come through the angels or the prophets,
but rather through the mouth of Christ Himself: we have a
spiritual mother – the Blessed Virgin Mary.
HOW DOES SHE EXERCISE HER SPIRITUAL
This spiritual maternity over mankind
is exercised in various ways:
She transmits divine
life: She transmits to us
the life of Her Son – because Christ is the Life and She has given
Christ to us. In addition, She is the woman associated par
excellence to the sacrifice of Christ that won eternal and divine
life for us. Having been the creature that cooperated in a unique
and singular manner with the work of redemption, She is also, by
divine design, the One who distributes the graces of Christ to us;
in this manner, she nourishes us, guides us, protects us and helps
us grow in the life of grace and the supernatural life in order to
reach the perfection and full stature of Christ (like St. Paul tell
us in Eph 4:13).
It is a gift to have a mother who cares for our spiritual life. We
often give more attention to our natural life than to our
supernatural life. Nonetheless, the supernatural life is a superior
reality: “Do not fear those who can kill the body but rather, those
who can ruin the soul” (cf. Mt 10:28).
“She conceived, brought forth and nourished Christ. She presented
Him to the Father in the temple, and was united with Him by
compassion as He died on the Cross. In this singular way she
cooperated by her obedience, faith, hope and burning charity in the
work of the Savior in giving back supernatural life to souls.
Wherefore she is our mother in the order of grace” (Lumen Gentium
She intercedes in
our favor: She does so
with supplications directed to Christ in order to obtain grace for
us. The Fathers of the Church referred to Her as the
all-powerful intercessor. She is this because of Her perfect
communion with Christ, with which She desires what He desires, and
because of Her faith, a faith that moves mountains.
When She said, “Do whatever He tells you” (Jn 2:5), She manifested
what was needed and left the rest to Her Son’s judgment, certain
that the solution He would give would be the best, the most
meaningful, and that which would resolve the need in the most
favorable manner. She left everything completely open to the Lord
and His will because She was sure that His will was the most perfect
thing that could be done and that which would really solve the
situation. She trusted in His wisdom, in His superior knowledge,
and in His wide and profound vision of things that embraced aspects
and circumstances She might not have been aware of. She presented
what was happening and left it in His Hands. It is this kind of
faith which obligated the Lord with greater force than the most
astute arguments or contentions. When the Virgin spoke to Him, His
hour had not come; after speaking with so much faith, His hour came
immediately. The faith of the Virgin that permeated the words of
Her brief phrase altered time, making the hour in which Christ
manifested His divinity come quicker through an extraordinary
manifestation that strengthened and augmented the faith of His
It is exercised
through Her universal mediation of graces:
She distributes the graces Christ obtained for us with His
redemption and which She has obtained through Her intercession. “The
maternal duty of Mary toward men in no wise obscures or diminishes
this unique mediation of Christ, but rather shows His power. For all
the salvific influence of the Blessed Virgin on men originates, not
from some inner necessity, but from the divine pleasure. It flows
forth from the superabundance of the merits of Christ, rests on His
mediation, depends entirely on it and draws all its power from it.
In no way does it impede, but rather does it foster the immediate
union of the faithful with Christ” (LG, 60).
She visits and
intervenes in our lives and in the life of the Church and of the
world: She does this
particularly when the Church is in danger of being lost, of falling
into error or of being darkened. Just as the pillar of cloud during
the day and the pillar of fire at night went before the Israelites
in the desert to show them the way, the Blessed Virgin – the new
pillar as described to us through the dream of St. John Bosco – goes
in front of us during times of confusion and battle, leading us
safely to the Heart of Jesus and His Church.
She does this often through apparitions that display her maternal
concern sinners, for situations in the world, and situations in the
Church. Does She not come precisely when we are in need of reviving
the faith and returning to Her Son?
WHEN DID HER MATERNITY BEGIN?
From the moment of the Annunciation,
when the Blessed Virgin received the call to be the Mother of the
Redeemer, Her call to be the Mother of all mankind also began in an
implicit and hidden manner. The Mother of the Head ought also to be
the Mother of the Body. The Mother of the Redeemer is to be the
Mother of the redeemed. The physical Mother of Christ will be the
Spiritual Mother of the Mystical Body of Christ. The Blessed
Virgin, by engendering Christ physically and naturally, also
engenders spiritually and supernaturally all of the members of the
Mystical Body of Christ – the entire human race. The Head as well
as its mystical members are the fruit of the same womb – that
of Mary. Therefore, She is the Mother of the total Christ – the
Head and the Body; She is Mother physically of the Head and
spiritually of its members, as Pope Pius X explained to us in his
encyclical, Ad diem illum. The spiritual maternity of Mary
is the complement of Her divine maternity. “Because of the
redemptive Incarnation, Mary became not only the Mother of God in
the physical order of nature, but also in the supernatural order of
grace she became the Mother of all men” (cf. Pius XII, Message
to the Marian Congress of Ottawa, Canada, June 19, 1947).
Her Maternity in the Gospels
We see some signs of the spiritual
maternity of the Blessed Virgin over man (in its two facets:
intercession and dispensation of graces) in the Gospels.
We see this in the Visitation, when Her presences brought saving
graces to John the Baptist and the grace of the Holy Spirit upon
Elizabeth, bringing about the first miracle in the supernatural
order. We also see it in Cana, where Her maternal intercession and
mediation brought about the first miracle in the order of nature.
These two signs of Her Spiritual
maternity reach their full realization on Calvary when, in an
explicit manner according to the Gospel of St. John, Christ from the
Cross directed Himself to the Beloved disciple (and in him to each
one of us) and gave Her to us as Mother. “Behold, your
Mother…Mother, behold, your Son” (cf. John 19:26-27). If the
spiritual maternity of Mary in respect to man had been delineated
since the Annunciation, on the Cross it is clearly established.
During that solemn moment, the words
of Christ officially proclaimed and confirmed the spiritual
maternity of Mary that existed since the Annunciation, but was
formally consummated and completed through Her most sorrowful
association and participation in the redemptive sacrifice. In
Nazareth, the Blessed Virgin Mary conceived us and on Calvary, She
She Gave Birth to Us in Pain
This spiritual maternity upon man,
confirmed and completed on the Cross, cost our Mother great
sufferings, and She gave birth to us in intense pain; Her Heart was
pierced. She gave birth to us while watching Her Son die; Her
maternity towards us is the fruit of pain. With the same fiat with
which She responded to the Annunciation of the Angel that brought
about Her divine maternity, She embraced the annunciation of Christ
on the Cross that brought Her Spiritual maternity. From that moment
on, She received John, and in him, every human person as sons and
daughters. Her Heart was spiritually pierced and opened to man for
When the Angel told Her, “Behold, you
will conceive in your womb and bear a son” (Lk 1:31), She opened her
Immaculate Heart to receive, with faith and obedience, the
invitation to divine maternity. The second announcement of
maternity came at the foot of the Cross. “The words of Jesus,
‘Woman, behold your Son,’ opened the Heart of the Mother in a new
way. A few moments later, the solider pierced the Heart of Christ.
With those words, the Heart of Mary opened to receive those whom
the Pierced Heart of Jesus was to reach with His redemptive power” (cf.
John Paul II, Homily, May 13, 1982, no.8). Just as the Heart of
Christ remained eternally opened on the Cross to pour graces of
salvation upon humanity, the Heart of Mary has remained eternally
open to receive as Mother those who accept the redemption of Her
BEHOLD YOUR SON: ST. JOHN AND EACH
ONE OF US
At the foot of the Cross was Mary;
with Her was St. John. This Apostle (according to the Magisterium
of the Church, the Fathers and Popes) represents all of humanity,
particularly the faithful who desire to be “beloved disciples.” At
the foot of the Cross, Christ confided the beloved disciple, and in
him, all men and the Church to the maternal care of Mary, so that
what He had done in Her can now be done in His mystical Body. “In
John the beloved disciple each person discovers that he or she is a
son or daughter of Her who has given the Son of God to the world”
(cf. John Paul II, Homily on September 15, 1988, no.9).
John Paul II, in his encyclical
Mother of the Redeemer, says, “It can be said that motherhood
‘in the order of grace’ preserves the analogy with what ‘in the
order of nature’ characterizes the union between mother and child.
In the light of this fact it becomes easier to understand why in
Christ's testament on Golgotha his Mother's new motherhood is
expressed in the singular, in reference to one man: ‘Behold your
son.’ It can also be said that these same words fully show the
reason for the Marian dimension of the life of Christ's disciples.
This is true not only of John, who at that hour stood at the foot of
the Cross together with his Master's Mother, but it is also true of
every disciple of Christ, of every Christian. The Redeemer entrusts
his mother to the disciple, and at the same time he gives her to him
as his mother. Mary's motherhood, which becomes man's inheritance,
is a gift: a gift which Christ himself makes personally to every
individual” (no. 45).
The maternity of Mary according to
Pope John Paul II
According to His Holiness John Paul II, the maternity of Mary over
the whole of humanity is the express desire of Christ, His final
testament. This maternity is universal and personal; She is the
Mother of the Church and the Mother of each member. Each one of us
ought to enter into a personal relationship with Her, a relationship
of Mother and child. She desires that we are Her children, that we
have an intimate relationship with Her as Christ had with Her, and
that this relationship is an extension of the love Christ had for
His Mother. He desires that we love Her as He loved Her.
Furthermore, Her maternity is a gift
of Christ to each one of us. Each disciple ought to have a Marian
dimension in his or her life (for example, one’s prayer groups
begins with the recitation of the Rosary).
As well, the maternal mission of Mary
ought to be received by each person. This is the profound
meaning of the Holy Father John Paul II’s papal coat of arms.
“The disciple took Her into his home” (Jn 19:27)… In other
words, he took Her into his heart, responding to the gift of
Christ. He made Her a part of his life, his problems, his spiritual
life, his decisions and his physical life. And as Mary was given
as Mother personally to him, the disciple responded with a
“self-offering.” Self-offering is the response of love of a person,
and concretely, it is the response to the love of a mother.
“Entrusting himself to Mary in a filial manner, the Christian, like
the Apostle John, ‘welcomes’ the Mother of Christ ‘into his own
home’ and brings her into everything that makes up his inner life,
that is to say into his human and Christian ‘I’”(RM, 45).
Christ entrusts and gives us
His Mother. He consecrated us to the maternal care of His Mother
because He knew that we need Her to grow in the life of perfection
and to defend ourselves in the spiritual battle against the devil.
This maternity has real effects in
our lives: it leads to the transmission of spiritual life, to
the restoration of souls. It has the mission of guiding us,
protecting us, educating us, forming us, and watching out for our
needs. Because She is our Mother, She is the powerful intercessor
and Mediatrix of all graces.
AFTER THE CROSS
All of Mary’s earthly life was marked
by Her maternal care towards Her Son and towards man; this maternal
solicitude was even greater at the moment of the Cross when Her
maternity was completed and confirmed and when, from the Pierced
Heart of Her Son, the Church, the Mystical Body of Her Son, was
born. She would have to do with the Church what She had done with
From that moment Her maternal Heart
turned towards the newly formed Church. She would be a true Mother
for the Mystical Body of Her Son; She would be with them in prayer,
in watchfulness and in maternal diligence through Her interventions
and visitations; She would be with them through Her generosity and
Her powerful intercession, through Her constant and loving
presence. She would intercede and intervene on behalf of all the
many diverse needs of Her children. She would aid the needs of men,
bringing about with Her prayer, meditation, and maternal presence,
the salvific action and saving power of Christ.
Her maternity is in itself a
meditation. For this
reason the Holy Father refers to it as a “maternal mediation.” He
says, “Mary places herself between her Son and mankind in the
reality of their wants, needs and sufferings. She puts herself ‘in
the middle,’ that is to say she acts as a mediatrix not as an
outsider, but in her position as mother. She knows that as such she
can point out to her Son the needs of mankind, and in fact, she ‘has
the right’ to do so. Her mediation is thus in the nature of
intercession: Mary ‘intercedes’ for mankind. And that is not all. As
a mother she also wishes the messianic power of her Son to be
manifested” (RM, 21).
Furthermore, if Christ has called Her
to be Mother of all, He not only gave Her the responsibility but
also the rights of maternity – to intercede, nourish, bring about
growth, protect, teach, form, etc.
Last, Her intercession has a double
aspect: the good of man and the manifestation of the saving power of
Her Son. Is this not what She revealed in Cana?
AFTER THE ASSUMPTION
“This maternity of Mary in the order
of grace began with the consent which she gave in faith at the
Annunciation and which she sustained without wavering beneath the
cross, and lasts until The eternal fulfillment of all the elect.
Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this salvific duty, but by
her constant intercession continued to bring us the gifts of eternal
salvation. By her maternal charity, she cares for the brethren
of her Son, who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and
cultics, until they are led into the happiness of their true home” (LG,
What does this mean for us? First, it
means that Her maternity will continue without ceasing until the
perfect consummation of the chosen – in other words, until the
end of time. The mission of Her maternity is to see Christ being
formed in our hearts, to see that we live in Christ and with the
life of Christ. It is Her mission to lead us, by Her intercession
and maternal mediation, towards Heaven. What suffering it causes
Her to not find Christ or His divine life in souls. If Saint Paul
said in Galatians 4:19, “My children, for whom I am again in labor
until Christ be formed in you,” what more can She say who, as our
spiritual Mother, is supposed to give birth to Christ in our hearts?
Moreover, Her maternity serves to
introduce men to Christ and Christ to men. She did this with the
shepherds, the Wise men, Simeon and Anna, the wedding couple at Cana
and the servers, the first disciples, and the Church.
In Heaven, She has not forgotten
about us. She lives interceding and intervening in the lives of
each one of us and in the life of the Church. For this reason, Mary
is ever more powerful in Her intercession after the Assumption,
after having entered Heaven with body and soul and having been
crowned Queen of Heaven and Earth. With maternal love She watches
over those who pilgrim amidst dangers and anguishes. Being our
Mother implies being involved in our lives and in the life of the
INVOLVED IN THE HISTORY OF EACH
Each one of us can give testimony to
the Spiritual maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in our lives.
How many times and moments have we not experienced the presence of
our mother, Her response to our pleas, Her interventions that free
us from dangers? We would never finish. The books of so many
saints are full of their experiences with the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The following are just some of the many ways we experience her
We experience Her protection.
We are freed from our temptations
through the presence of Mary.
We are protected physically.
Our families are restored by the
prayer of the Holy Rosary.
In our loneliness we experience
Her maternal love.
In the midst of attacks of the
enemy, we experience how Her merciful gaze causes them to cease.
During sufferings we receive Her
In the middle of coldness, we
receive Her tenderness.
It is with good reason that St. Louis
de Montfort said, “It prompts us to go to her in every need of body
and soul with great simplicity, trust and affection. We implore our
Mother's help always, everywhere, and for everything. We pray to her
to be enlightened in our doubts, to be put back on the right path
when we go astray, to be protected when we are tempted, to be
strengthened when we are weakening, to be lifted up when we fall
into sin, to be encouraged when we are losing heart, to be rid of
our scruples, to be consoled in the trials, crosses and
disappointments of life. Finally, in all our afflictions of body and
soul, we naturally turn to Mary”… with the… “confidence that a child
has for its loving Mother” (Treatise on True Devotion to Mary,
The Holy Father constantly has
recourse to the maternal care of Our Lady, both in a personal manner
as well as pastor of the Church. There is no single occurrence, no
single letter, no allocution, and no ministry that he does not
confide to the care of the Blessed Virgin Mary. To Her, He
attributes his having been spared from the assassination attempt.
“One hand fired, but another directed the bullet.” It is that
bullet that is found today in the crown of the image of Our Lady of
Fatima in the Sanctuary of Fatima.
INVOLVED IN THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH
AND OF THE WORLD
“To you do we cry, mourning and
weeping in this valley of tears.”
“And as Mother of the Church, Mary
assumed and crowned in heaven does not cease to be ‘involved’ in the
history of the Church, history of the struggle between good and
evil” (John Paul II, Homily, Aug 15, 1995, no.4).
In the book of Revelation (ch.12),
we are presented with the two maternities of Mary: Mother of Jesus
and Mother of believers. We see the appearance of a Woman clothed
with the Sun, with the moon under Her feet and a crown of twelve
stars around Her head, who is having birth pains as She gives birth.
Next, we also see a dragon appear.
When darkness invades all of the earth, we see Our Lady appear in
defense of Her children, bringing them to the light of Christ. No
longer do we only see the devil in the horizon, but now also the
Virgin Mary, Mother of Christ and our Mother, who appears, visits,
protects, guides, illuminates and teaches us a way contrary to the
way of the devil. Her maternity not only nourishes us with the life
of Christ, but also defends us from the enemy of Christ. With Her
maternity, She is situated in the very center of that “enmity,” of
the struggle that has accompanied the history of humanity on earth
and the very history of salvation. Within this history, Mary
continues to be the sign of hope for the future (RM, 11). We
and Jesus have Her as a Mother in order that She can defend Her Son
from being devoured by the dragon and defend the rest of Her
children, whom the raging dragon seeks to devour.
Let us examine the meaning of the
text from Revelation. She appeared as a great sign in the sky
dressed in the sun. This “dress of the sun” is the light of Christ.
As well, the moon was under Her feet; the moon represents time.
Therefore, She has authority, and She exercises it over time; in
fact, She is its patron. Even though She lived in time, She is
superior to the vicissitudes of time and is not conditioned by it.
In other words, She has the power, given to Her by God, to crush the
battles that take place in history at specific times. The fact that
She is crowned signifies Her participation in the royalty of Her
Son; She is Queen of Heaven and earth. Finally, the twelve stars
symbolize the triumph of the Church in Mary.
When the Church walks through the
desert in the middle of great battles, Mary is evermore present to
protect Her children. And when the battle is fiercest, the children
have recourse to the Mother; this has been the constant testimony of
the Church. A prayer from the third century reads, “Under your
protection we place ourselves, Oh Mother of God; do not refuse our
pleas which we direct to you in our needs, but rather, free us from
all danger, Oh glorious and blessed Virgin.” John Paul II, as a
cardinal, spoke these words: “The experience of the faithful is to
see the Mother of God as the One who is, in a most special way,
united to the Church in those most difficult moments of its history,
when the attacks towards Her are ever more menacing. This is in
full communion with the woman who is revealed in Genesis and the
Book of Revelation. Precisely in those periods when Christ, and
therefore His Church, are a great sign of contradiction, Mary
appears particularly close to the Church, because it will always be
the mystical Body of Her Son…. In those periods of history, the
particular need of entrustment oneself to Mary is felt. God the
Father entrusted His only Son to humanity.
The first human person to whom
He entrusted Him was Mary. And until the end of times, She will
remain as the One whom God confided the mystery of Salvation in
favor of the human race” (Lenten Sermons to Pope Paul VI and the
Roman Curia, 1976).
We have 2000 years of history in
which we have seen many interventions of the Blessed Virgin Mary in
key situations in the life of the Church and of the world. She has
intervened as Mother and as Queen in the history of the world. In
Fatima, the Virgin manifested a particular detail through what She
wore: a star. She wanted to remind us of Her powerful intercessory
mission. Esther means star. She is the new Esther that
presents herself before the King interceding for the people. Let
us remember the story of Esther.
Amman, enemy of the Jews, got the
consent of the king for the extermination of the people of
The decree for extermination was
given on the 13th of the month.
The Jews gathered together to
pray and to do penance.
Esther presented herself with all
her beauty before the King.
She asked for the liberation of
her people from the enemies who were seeking to annihilate them.
She was able to win the favor of
the King who reversed the action of the enemy and carried out
the punishment on him (Amman) instead.
“The reality of the struggle that
continues in history also makes evident the definitive victory
through the work of the woman, through Mary, who is our Advocate and
the powerful ally of all nations on earth” (cf. John Paul II.
Homily, Aug 15, 1995, no.4).
The following are some other
Our Lady of the Pillar:
In the year 40 AD, She appeared in
Spain to the Apostle James in order to animate him in his efforts of
evangelization of that country, as he was not having much success.
After the apparition, the Blessed Virgin Mary left a Pillar with a
small statue as a proof of Her presence and to manifest the fact
that She intervenes in history to sustain and support our faith.
She asked Him to construct a chapel, and upon its completion, it
became the first church dedicated to the Virgin Mary during the
Christian era. It is from this faith that Spain received that we
receive our faith as well.
Here, we see the intervention of the Virgin Mary in the re-conquest
of Spain. The re-conquest from the hands of the Moors (Muslims)
began by on the mountain of Covadonga. Our Lady appeared in a cave
there and animated them to battle, thus bringing about victory and
the establishment of Christianity in the new Spain. Here, we can see
that the Virgin intervened in the mission of the Church and in the
expansion of the kingdom.
In 1531, when the evangelization of
the Indians seemed almost impossible for the Spanish missionaries,
the Virgin Mary appeared as a mediator of unity between them,
utilizing, as a mother, all that would touch the heart of the
Indians as well as support the spiritual authority of the
missionaries and the bishop. She made possible the evangelization
of eight million Indians.
She obtained the conversion of the heretical Albigensians by means
of the Holy Rosary which was given as a sure remedy against heresy.
In the 16th century, the Muslims were invading Europe and imposing
their religion by force, thus destroying Christianity. They
threatened to invade Rome, and Pope Pius V called upon Catholics to
defend the faith. An army was formed and they set out after their
enemy. On the 7th of October of 1572, the two armies faced each
other in the Gulf of Lepanto. Between them, they had more than 400
ships and 80,000 soldiers. The Christians, however, were
outnumbered. Before beginning the battle, they confessed, had Mass
and prayed the Rosary, singing to the Blessed Mother. At the
beginning, the battle was unfavorable for the Christians as the
winds were blowing in the opposite direction, which kept their ships
still. Then the Pope, with a great multitude of people, began to
walk the streets of Rome praying the Rosary. In a miraculous
manner, the wind changed its course and the sails of the ships took
form and propelled the ships forward against their enemies,
achieving victory. For this reason, the date of Oct. 7 is
celebrated as the day of the Rosary.
We know that through the intervention of Mary Help of Christians,
Pope Pius VII, who was arrested by Napoleon, returned to Rome on the
24th of May, 1814. As well, through her intercession, the army of
Napoleon was defeated, and he was imprisoned for life.
The Blessed Virgin Mary asked for the consecration of Russia in
order to avoid the propagation of its errors. She came with the
desire to intervene in the dangerous future that hung over the world
and gave the necessary remedies: penance, the rosary and
consecration to Her Immaculate Heart.
Hiroshima and Japan in the Second
World War: On the 6th
of August, 1945, a group of Jesuit priests were praying the rosary
at the moment in which the bomb was set off. They suffered no harm
whatsoever. Furthermore, the signing of peace with Japan at the end
of World War II was on the 15th of August, 1945. Six years later,
on Sept. 8, 1951, a more formal treaty was signed.
70,000 people committed themselves
to pray the rosary for 7 years. On the 13th of May in
1955, the Soviets were forced to leave the country.
In 1962, the Communists took power. Therefore, a rosary and
procession was organized in which 600,000 women went through the
streets praying the Rosary. Twenty-one days later communism was
thrown out of the country.
In 1986 they celebrated a local
Marian year. There was a great confrontation between the army and
the people, who were in danger of being killed. A beautiful woman
appeared, described by the guards as a religious, who told them,
“Why do you want to kill my children?” The guards put down their
weapons and liberation came to the Philippines. Cardinal Sin openly
declared that this victory was the work of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Fruits of Consecration:
After the consecration of the world in 1984 and the Marian year of
1987, Europe experienced the peaceful fall of communism. The Holy
Father said in his encyclical Redemptoris Mater that the
Marian year was an anticipation of the jubilee, and that the fruits
of it would be expressed fully in the year 2000 (no.3).
Holy Father John Paul II:
His assassination attempt was on the 13th of May, 1981 – the feast
of Our Lady of Fatima. The Holy Father publicly proclaimed that his
life was protected directly by the intervention of the Blessed
Virgin Mary and that the messages of Fatima, at the end of the
century, seemed to have been fulfilled.
Other Various Occurrences:
The signing in Washington of a
treaty regulating the use of short range nuclear weapons was on
Dec. 8, 1987.
On January 1, 1990, the Berlin
wall came down.
On August 22, 1991, the communist
party in Russia fell apart, and the Soviet Union was dissolved.
A new nation was created on Dec. 8, 1991.
Sadly, these interventions of our
Mother in the happenings of the world are not appreciated nor often
even recognized; rather they are seen simply as the result of human
THE CHURCH OF THE NEW WORLD
CHARACTERIZED BY THE SPIRITUAL MATERNITY OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN
“I desire greatly that a church be
erected here for me in order to manifest and bring forth in it
all of my love, compassion, support and defense. I am your most
loving Mother – yours, all those who inhabit this land, and all
others who are devoted to me and who invoke and confide in me” (Our
Lady of Guadalupe to St. Juan Diego).
In Guadalupe, The Blessed Virgin Mary
clearly affirmed that She is our Mother. With a universal
maternity, she made known the maternal inclinations of Her Heart: to
love, to be compassionate, to help defend and to have mercy. She
asked for the construction of a church, not to exhibit Herself, but
to listen to the cry of Her children there and to give a remedy to
all their miseries, pains and sufferings. In her sanctuaries – not
exclusively, but in a special way – she brings about Her mission as
Mother in favor of all men. Her sanctuaries are new Canas.
During the fourth apparition of the
Virgin in Mexico, She opened Her whole Heart to Juan Diego and spoke
to him with expressions full of maternal affection: “Listen and
understand, my son, the smallest one, that there is nothing that
should cause you to fear. Do not let your heart be troubled. Am I
not here who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow? Am I not
your fountain of life? Are you not, in fact, within the embrace of my arms? Do not let
anything afflict you.”
Under Her mantel and shadow, She
protects us from the sun or the rain.
She is our fountain of life, our
Mother in the order of grace, who contributes to our supernatural
life. She is “our life, our sweetness and our hope.”
She holds us within her embrace; in
the fold of Her mantel, we are guarded, clothed and protected.
Is not, in fact, the history of the
Church in Latin America full of the Maternal presence of the Blessed
Virgin? Are not the advocations with which we venerate Mary in our
countries the fruit of the intervention of Mary in the lives of the
America is the continent of Mary, the
continent that has known up close the spiritual maternity of Mary.
Let us never renounce so great an election. We have been called the
“Continent of Hope” by John Paul II (Homily, Basilica of Our Lady of
Guadalupe, Mexico City, January 23, 1999). Could it be because in
the center of our spiritual lives, our culture, and our Church is
the Blessed Virgin Mary? Situated in the very center of our
salvation history, we find that “enmity” of the struggle that has
accompanied the history of humanity on earth. In this history, Mary
continues to be a sign of future hope (RM, 11).
“May the maternal intercession of
Mary, the Mother of the Redeemer and of love, be the star that
guides with certainty the steps that Christians take in their
encounter with the Lord” (cf. Tertio Millennio Adveniente,
TRUST IN HER INTERCESSION
We ought to have recourse to Her and
to invoke Her in all our necessities, both spiritual and material,
completely certain that we will always be received, heard, and that
She will obtain for us the necessary grace in full accordance with
the will of the Son.
She knows what we need because She
sees us in God. From the glory of Heaven She lives to intercede for
She can give us Her help. With a
single plea to God, she makes possible His action within humanity.
Finally, She wants to help us because
She loves us and because She is our Mother.
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