Friday, April 02, 2010

Mary and her dead son

Weeping Mary, sitting on the ground with her back pinned to the blood soaked wood, holds her son in her arms. The author of life has no life in him. She vividly remembers God's angel's words to her: "He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob, and of his Kingdom there will be no end . . . [He] will be called Holy, the Son of God." [Luke 1:32-35]

Now the Holy Son of God lays dead in her arms. His body, all beaten and scourged, bathes with his precious blood. His hands and feet pierced, his head punctured with thorns, and his side opened. He has given it all.

Mary suffers and who can feel her pain except a mother who had held her dead child in her arms. Mary, the one whom the "Holy Spirit came upon", the one "overshadowed by the power of the Most High" [Luke 1:35] is now pierced by the sword [Luke 2:35], a sword that shatters her heart.

Mary kisses her son's face over and over again mixing her tears with his blood, wiping his face with her right hand. Just the night before her son prayed "Abba, Father, all things are possible to you. Take this cup away from me, but not what I will but what you will" [Mark 14:36]. Just thirty three years earlier Mary has also prayed: "I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word." Luke [1:38].

Mary remembers her tears the first time that she lost him. She had held him so tight and kissed him so much as he comforted her with the words: "Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's House?" [Luke 2:50] Now she remembers his words at the beginning of his ministry: "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life." [John 3:16] She thought to herself, today my little "good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep" [John 10:11]

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