Happy Mother’s Day to Mothers Everywhere…..to mothers who give and give and then give some more. It is what we were made for, it is what we live for and it will be what we die for. Once a mother, always a mother. We watch them come into the world, we nurture them, try to solve their problems, and then watch them as they leave and embark on their own journeys.
We pray for them, we hurt for them, we rejoice for them. Whether they are near or far, our hearts are entwined with theirs. It is bittersweet…..more sweet than bitter!
“A mother will never desert her child. For she loves them with a love that is as strong and deep as life itself.”
A Tribute to Mothers by Rev. John A. O’Brien, 1953
By universal proclamation our nation has added another memorial day to her calendar – Mother’s Day.
It is a day on which we pause to pay the tribute of our love and reverence to our mothers if living, to their memory if dead. It is eminently fitting that we should thus pause for a brief moment in the turmoil of life to give explicit expression to sentiments which have been latent in the hearts of each of us throughout all the days of the year.
It is good psychology to give fitting expression to such sentiments. For instead of allowing them to wane, we thereby strengthen and intensify them.
Such considerations are, moreover, wholesome and salutary for us because they render us more clearly conscious of the debt we owe our mothers.
“Motherhood,” says Frederick A. Stowe, “is the Gethsemane of nature.”
When the child is born the mother begins to die—die for the new life dearer than her own, die in service for another, die in dreams of peaceful valleys she shall not enter, die upon battlefields whose shouts of victory she shall not hear.
No sacrifice for the young is begrudged by the mother. Toward the sun of a new life, all nature turns. The springtide bursts with prodigality but there is not a drop of sap for the autumnal leaf. At the meridian declination begins. Reproduction is the inexorable ambition of the material world.
“In its spiritual aspects, motherhood is isolated because it is great. There is no speculation as to mother’s status. Conceded eminence is as lonely as some crag which lifts its head above the fugitive clouds and defies the furious winds below.
Youth loves to dwell in the warm valleys of patronage. It is eager for adventure and the conquests of blood. It rushes toward prospects and is ever willing to take a chance.
Reflection is the fruit of maturity. We do not begin to bear sense until passions are spent, and Time, which is a strict accountant, demands an audit.”
Various Kinds of Love
There are various kinds of love on this earth. There is the love of a friend for a friend, of a chum for his chum.
It is a beautiful sentiment and one which all the world admires. But friends fall out at times; the love cools and even turns to hatred.
There is the love of sweethearts. It is beautiful and tender and sweet. But sometimes the fancy changes, the romance fades, and sweethearts part.
There is the love of husband and wife, tender true and sanctified by divine grace. But the world witnesses at times the separation even of husband and wife, the pitiful tragedy of a broken home.
Then there is the love of a mother for her child. It is the climax of all human love – as strong as the great rugged Alpine Mountain peaks, as tender as the breath of an angel, as infinite as the measureless waters of the ocean, as changeless as the stars that shine eternally in the skies.
Friends may fall out, the romance of sweethearts may fade, husband and wife may separate, but a mother will never desert her boy. For she loves him with a love that is as strong and deep as life itself.
Aye, it seems to rise above all human love, and to burn with a spark that was caught from the flame of the love that is eternal and divine–the love of God for man.
I like to think that God has given us a foreshadowing and a foretaste of His own infinite love for human souls in the love He has planted in a mother’s breast.
From the Prayer Book Precious Blood and Mother:
There are soft words murmured by dear, dear lips,
Far richer than any other;
But the sweetest word that the ear hath heard
Is the blessed name of “Mother.”
O magical word! May it never die,
From the lips that love to speak it.
Nor melt away from the trusting heart,
That even would break to keep it.
Was there ever a name that lived like this?
Will there ever be such another?
The Angels have reared in Heaven a shrine
To the holy name of “Mother.”
Fortunate the child whose mother stands by its cradle like a Guardian Angel to inspire and lead it in the path of goodness! – Pope Pius XII
“Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!” 🙂
In With God in Russia, Ciszek reflects on his daily life as a prisoner, the labor he endured while working in the mines and on construction gangs, his unwavering faith in God, and his firm devotion to his vows and vocation. Enduring brutal conditions, Ciszek risked his life to offer spiritual guidance to fellow prisoners who could easily have exposed him for their own gains. He chronicles these experiences with grace, humility, and candor, from his secret work leading mass and hearing confessions within the prison grounds, to his participation in a major gulag uprising, to his own “resurrection”—his eventual release in a prisoner exchange in October 1963 which astonished all who had feared he was dead.
Powerful and inspirational, With God in Russia captures the heroic patience, endurance, and religious conviction of a man whose life embodied the Christian ideals that sustained him…..
Captured by a Russian army during World War II and convicted of being a “Vatican spy,” Jesuit Father Walter J. Ciszek spent 23 agonizing years in Soviet prisons and the labor camps of Siberia. Only through an utter reliance on God’s will did he manage to endure the extreme hardship. He tells of the courage he found in prayer–a courage that eased the loneliness, the pain, the frustration, the anguish, the fears, the despair. For, as Ciszek relates, the solace of spiritual contemplation gave him an inner serenity upon which he was able to draw amidst the “arrogance of evil” that surrounded him. Ciszek learns to accept the inhuman work in the infamous Siberian salt mines as a labor pleasing to God. And through that experience, he was able to turn the adverse forces of circumstance into a source of positive value and a means of drawing closer to the compassionate and never-forsaking Divine Spirit.
He Leadeth Me is a book to inspire all Christians to greater faith and trust in God–even in their darkest hour. As the author asks, “What can ultimately trouble the soul that accepts every moment of every day as a gift from the hands of God and strives always to do his will?”