Happy Birthday, Mary!
Today, September 8th, we recognize and celebrate the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary- our mother and the mother of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Happy Birthday, Momma. Your birthday is always easy for me to remember because my earthly mother’s birthday is September 4th, mine is September 6th, and yours is September 8th. I have always gotten a kick out of the fact that myself, my earthly mother and my heavenly mother make one big birthday sandwich.
While I might always recognize my mommas birthdays, I wonder how many times their acts of love towards me have gone unrecognized or unnoticed? My mom joyfully gave me the gift of herself and her love through eighteen years of washing, cooking, cleaning, praying, guiding, and teaching. Particularly as a young child and teenager, have not my mom’s sacrifices and daily acts of love often gone unnoticed by me? Or perhaps they were noticed and seen, but not appreciated? Or perhaps appreciated, at least internally, but I did not make an effort to thank her or show her my appreciation?
And if my earthly mother, whom I can see, has often gone unrecognized by me, what about my heavenly mother whom I cannot see? Mary has joyfully given me a lifetime of praying, guiding, and teaching. Whether or not I take the time and effort to acknowledge her loving efforts to guide me to her Son, she continues her daily labor of love. She labors for my soul, and for all of our souls. Nothing would be more pleasing to her than for each of us to believe in and love her Son, and one day be united to Him eternally in Heaven.
Appreciated for her labors of love or not, a mother will continue to labor out of sacrificial love. May we never miss an opportunity to recognize, thank, honor, and love our mothers. Mother Mary, thank you for all of your prayers, spiritual blessings, guidance, and assistance. Thank you for listening to my prayers and lovingly carrying my heartfelt intentions to your Son. Thank you for loving my soul so much, that when you see me take the slightest step away from your Son, you gently guide me back into His arms. I offer you my gratitude to you as a birthday gift. Happy Birthday, Momma Mary.
Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraph 2674: Mary gave her consent in faith at the Annunciation and maintained it without hesitation at the foot of the Cross. Ever since, her motherhood has extended to the brothers and sisters of her Son “who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties.”28 Jesus, the only mediator, is the way of our prayer; Mary, his mother and ours, is wholly transparent to him: she “shows the way” (hodigitria), and is herself “the Sign” of the way, according to the traditional iconography of East and West.