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The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God: The First Disciple


newborn_baby“So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child. All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart” (Luke2: 16-19).
 
It is not unusual that new mothers, sometimes immediately or sometimes when they regain some strength and the opportunity to reflect a bit, will treasure and ponder the wonder of the new life brought into the world.
 
Mary hears from the shepherds their tale—a story of angels and heavenly song and prophecy. The birth of this child, they say, is good news not only for her and
Joseph but also “for all the people” (Luke 2:10). What a message to treasure and ponder!
 
The ultimate destiny and meaning of Mary’s infant child will become more clear to her. Like many mothers, she treasures this child and ponders on what
is still to come.
 
We honor Mary as the Mother of God. But in some ways her greatest “honor” is that she is the first disciple of her son. Her response to the angel Gabriel, “May it be done to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38), is the decision of a disciple choosing to obey and follow. As disciple, she has a unique role to play.
 
She is to be the Mother of the Messiah, the Mother of Emmanuel, the Mother of God. Her “yes” sets her on the way to becoming mother. She is disciple first, then mother.
 
She treasures her choosing that has taken flesh in her son, Jesus. And she ponders what it may mean to follow and obey this same son. Perhaps we share Mary’s moment. We treasure the wonder of God’s love revealed in the birth of her son.
 
And we, too, ponder what it means to follow and be changed by such a love.
 
Adapted from PrayerTime: Faith-Sharing Reflections on the Sunday Gospels, available at the RENEW International store

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