FAITHFUL FOLLOWER OF JESUS
The Gospel-writers present the Virgin with features that can enliven our devotion to Mary, Jesus’ Mother. This vision helps us to love her, meditate on her, imitate her, pray to her and trust in her with a new and evangelical spirit.
Mary is the great believer. The first follower of Jesus. The woman who knows how to meditate in her heart on her Son’s deeds and words. The prophet who sings to God, the Savior of the poor announced by Jesus. The faithful mother who stays near her Son as he is persecuted, condemned, and put to death on the cross. Witness of the risen Christ, she who joins together with the disciples of the Spirit who will always accompany Jesus’ Church.
Luke, for his part, invites us to make our own the song of Mary, in order to let ourselves be guided to Jesus by her spirit, since in the «Magnificat» shines the full splendor of Mary’s faith and her motherly identification with her Son Jesus.
Mary begins her proclamation of God’s greatness: «My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, because he has looked upon the humiliation of his servant». Mary is happy because God has put his gaze on her lowliness. That’s how God is with the little ones. Mary sings this with the same joy with which Jesus blesses the Father, because God is hidden to «the wise and the learned» and is revealed to «the little ones». Mary’s faith in the God of the little ones puts us in tune with Jesus.
Mary proclaims the «powerful» God because «his faithful love extends age after age». God put his power at the service of compassion. His mercy accompanies all generations. Jesus preaches the same message: God is merciful with everyone. That’s why he tells his disciples of all ages: «be merciful as your Father is merciful». From her mother’s heart, Mary captures as no one else the tenderness of God Father and Mother, and introduces us into the core of Jesus’ message: God is compassionate love.
Mary also proclaims the God of the poor because «he pulls down princes from their thrones» and has left them without power to keep oppressing; on the contrary, «he raises high the lowly» so that they recover their dignity. He chastises the rich for robbing the poor and «he sends them away empty»; on the contrary, «he fills the starving with good things» so that they enjoy a more human life. Jesus shouted out the same message: «the last shall be first». Mary lets us welcome Jesus’ Good News: God is the God of the poor.
Mary teaches us as no one else to follow Jesus, announcing the God of compassion, working for a more fraternal world and trusting in the God of the little ones.
José Antonio Pagola
Translator: Fr. Jay VonHandorf