This weekend we celebrate Mother’s Day. I would like first of all to wish a happy feast day to all the mothers. Something that strikes me about this feast is the cultural shock that comes with it. In my Congolese culture, we call every woman “Maman” out of respect, child or senior, married or single, with child or childless indistinctively. So, please bear with me. When I wish a “Happy Mother’s Day” to every female person, it is both out of respect and in recognition for the dignity of and the sacrifices women accept in fulfilling their ministries with motherly hearts.
In our daily life, we all are tempted to find solace in different places and around many people. These choices can lead us either to some kind of peace or even to the worst. And we happen to regret those choices. Today, Christ reminds us where true peace and comfort are, namely in and with Him. Because he is love! He invites us to remain in His love because in Him and with him there is no deception.
When Christ invites us to remain in him, the risk would be to understand it as being besides him or as simple companionship. Rather, Christ calls us to life of communion with Him. This communion leads us to St. Paul’s confession that “this present life, it is no longer I who live but Christ living in me, within me…” Thus, the intimate communion to which we are invited goes beyond simple feelings; it is a call to everlasting desire for communion in love. The consequence of such communion is the experience of the joy that flows from the love God has for us and the one we are meant to show for one another as proof of the life of Christ within us. Our joy will be complete only in so far as we love the way Christ loves us, namely, to be able to lay down our own lives for the sake of others.
But what does it mean for us to lay down our life for the sake of others? The experience of martyrdom, which means bearing witness, calls us first of all to see Christ present in each person in front of us. Once we get to that level of identifying Christ with every person we see, we will then strive to be able to act towards them in the very same we would have acted towards Christ. This is how we can bear fruit that will remain, that is to leave a positive impact or imprint in the lives of those who happen to encounter us.
As we offer our prayers for all mothers, living and deceased, and thank God for the blessing of Jesus Christ who strengthens us as we remain in Him, let us continue to pray for one another and for our parish family.