I recently celebrated my 13th anniversary of Entrustment to Mary - an act of consecration to Christ through Mary that I made with my confessor totally in service to the Church. The anniversary date is always something very special to me. It reminds me of God’s Divine Mercy and Love and fills me with gratitude that I am His beloved daughter. Having spent 13 years walking the path of this spirituality, I have many concrete examples of how it has helped me live more peacefully. Longanimity is no longer a word that confuses me, but a fruit the Spirit has made a regular part of my diet. I take no credit, other than to acknowledge Blessed Mother’s perseverance and patience in my life.
I have learned to anticipate gifts as the anniversary approaches. I never know what kind of treat I will get - corporal, spiritual or mental. This year, I was given such a “sweet” it brought me to tears. A friend was sharing with me a conversation she had with an acquaintance. This fellow Catholic was vocalizing concerns about receiving the Blessed Blood from a shared Chalice. It was just short of repulsive to the person and so this person had made up his mind not to receive for fear of germs. My friend, however, saw it differently. She shared how she believes Jesus purifies the germs on the way to our lips.
It is hard to explain what happened to me in listening to this story, but it absolutely rocked my world. I have not had trouble receiving my Lord from the Chalice. I am an Extraordinary Minister at my parish, and I make sure I wipe the Chalice well when I am in that service. But this was a matter of faith. In and through faith, I took a “deeper” look at the humility of Christ. HE comes in contact with my neighbors “germs” and purifies them before HE then touches all my “germs” ~ and so how can I fear? Every Mass this lesson is taught, and I was closed to it completely. But, on my day of Entrustment, Blessed Mother (MOM) opened my ears and heart to this truth.
The example of the Body and Blood of Christ purifying the Chalice can be applied in so many areas of my life. For example, when I catch myself yelling at my kids due to my impatience and self-absorption, I can immediately make an act of contrition - praying to be immersed in the Eucharistic Sacrifice. Or, when I am unjustly treated, I can remember Christ’s humility - realizing He makes Himself present to my neighbor and to me in my neighbor. Focusing on Jesus’ humility can allow me to desire more humility in my own life, and often leads me to beg for closer union with Him through Mary. Most importantly, it reminds me that humility is the Christian road. Christ reaches out and touches my sin - and in so doing purifies me from it. In faith, I see now why we must run to the fountain of His Mercy, allowing it to wash us clean.
One of the spiritualities of the New Evangelization is called the Families of Nazareth Movement (FNM). It’s role is to help its members to grow in humility so that they can be more open to God’s Redeeming Love. Since it is so hard to believe we are loved as we are, the FNM members turn to Blessed Mother who lived that truth (that She was purely loved as She was). Obeying Christ’s dying words from the Crucifix, “Behold, your mother,” (Jn 19:27) its members allow Her to work in their lives to more openly see who they are - who GOD loves. Ultimately, a FNM member will be so joyfully overcome with God’s love that he/she will want to spread that love to all those around him/her. This is how FNM members serve the Church...becoming instruments of God’s love in the world.
"God falls in love with the posture of humility precisely because He can pour out the ocean of His mercy into the humble spirit." (S.C. Biela, Behold, I Stand at the Door and Knock (Ft. Collins, CO: IAMF, 2005), 31.
Free reflections on faith are available at the In the Arms of Mary Foundation website that deal with the themes we blog about. There is a 5-reflections series called “Behold, Your Mother.” I strongly encourage it for anyone desiring to grow in deeper communion of life with Christ through His Mother.