For just as in Adam all die, so too in Christ shall all be brought to life, but each one in proper order: Christ the firstfruits; then, at his coming, those who belong to Christ
Fanciful stories and romantic notions. This day is a bit about that. Fanciful stories and romantic notions. It comes from the idea that we, and I want to emphasize we have to do something with our Blessed Mother.
Indeed, we owe Mary a debt of gratitude for her fiat, her acceptance of God’s will for her, that she be the mother of His Son Jesus. We owe her a debt of gratitude for the ministry she performed, both throughout her Son’s life, and in the early Church. She left us an example of dedication and service that we should all be following.
At the same time, there is no gospel of Mary. Rather, Mary lived the gospel path her son laid out for all of us. As a faithful follower of her Son, by her yes to God and her service, she showed us that we too can follow Jesus’ gospel path. Mary did not propose alternatives.
What Mary did say we read in today’s gospel: “From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me and holy is his Name.” The entire Magnificat concerns what God has done and is doing. Mary is the vessel through which God would accomplish the works Mary praises. Accordingly, she deserves honor, respect, and the title blessed. Blessed is she among women because the fruit of her womb is the Blessed One.
So, what must we do with Mary? If we hold Mary in esteem, as we should, we honor her rightly. We must not ascribe to fanciful stories and romantic notions. We do not make her ‘appear’ over trees, in the hills, and on mountain sides sharing ‘special messages.’ We do not remove her humanity. We do not rush her resurrection from the dead. We follow the gospel path her Son Jesus laid out for us. We trust His words alone. We follow His teachings exclusively. We honor and esteem Mary. We seek her intercession. We entrust ourselves to the power of her prayer before the Throne of God.
Bottom line is that we need not ‘do’ anything with the path of Mary’s life and death. We need not impose our fanciful stories and romantic notions on Mary. We need only trust that if we too follow Jesus like she did then we, like she, will be brought to life at Christ’s coming.