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"Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience," (Col 3:12)

15 August 2023

15 August - Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Reading 1: RV 11:19A; 12:1-6A, 10AB

Responsorial Psalm: PS 45:10, 11, 12, 16

Reading 2: 1 COR 15:20-27


Gospel LK 1:39-56


It is difficult to talk about someone knowing only parts of his / her life. The number of times Mary appears in the pages of Sacred Scripture, especially in the Gospels, is, we can say, insignificant. If we collected all her words spoken and recorded in the Gospels, perhaps we could fill one page in a small notebook. However, we are still talking about her as the Mother of God, we call Her Queen of the Universe, New Eve, Mother of the Church. In order to deserve such a great distinction, man should do great works, but for Mary the greatest work comes from the grace of God, and that is the opening of her heart and womb to the living presence of God, which is expressed in the words of the Magnificat: The Almighty has done great things for me. Mary is saying to us: I did not make all this, but God made it through me. Sometimes one act, one word, is enough to give a person a new identity, an identity that remains for the whole life, and even for all eternity. For Mary, it was to receive the Son of God under her heart and bring him into the world in Bethlehem. We do not know much about her before the moment of the Annunciation, many things we have to guess, many things to imagine, some are inexplicable to our minds, covered by the wall of dogmas given to believe. We do not know what her childhood looked like, but we can imagine, from her great love for God, that she had an extremely intimate relationship with him, based on unlimited trust and obedience to love. This is clearly seen in the scene of the Annunciation, when God invites her, making her an important point in his plan of salvation. This is where the story of the Miriam we know begins. The greatest things often originate from simplicity, they are born beyond human eyes and the hustle and bustle of this world. The most wonderful people often wear worn shoes and a hole in the sock. God chooses a simple girl from Nazareth, unknown to the world but known to Him, Miriam, whose name means: Longing for a child, Full of bitterness; Other sources: wonderful, Lady, Advocate, Beautiful, Joyful. Still other sources: Bitterness, Sorrow, Beloved. Already in this name is the whole life of Mary, whose desire for God, embodied in the person of Jesus, and her joy at his birth in Bethlehem, later mingles with the bitterness and sorrow of the Cross. A name full of contrast, reflected in a life full of contrast, but not without one thing: the presence of God, whom Mary never loses sight of. It is this contrast in Mary's life that allows us to see God better and to recognize his presence in various circumstances of life, in those moments full of joy and exultation, but also in those moments when we must, like her, stand under the cross. Recognizing God's presence brings trust and peace. It is the same in your life: joy is mixed with sadness, sweetness with bitterness, sadness with suffering, tears of happiness with tears of pain and despair. You are beautiful but also weak, your beating heart is full of wounds, cracked with the blows of suffering, but fearless and resisting in the face of difficulties and sufferings. You are loved but sometimes rejected, trusting but sometimes mocked. But above all, you are God's CHOSEN, invited to a special relationship with Him, to make your heart a womb upon which God's presence will rest, which you will then give to others through your goodness, joy, compassion. God once announced to you that he wanted to become part of your life and through you to give life to others, physically and spiritually, because Mary not only gave birth to the Son of God for us, but also continually gives birth to us for Christ, as the teaching of the Church emphasizes. I must say that I’m jealous that God came through a woman. It's a pity that we can’t get pregnant, although many guys look like that today. After all, Jesus could have come into this world in a more unconventional way, without human participation. However, this did not happen. He wanted to become one of us and he did so by passing through the womb of a woman, the most delicate and beautiful. Why did God choose a woman? Because of her delicacy, purity, sensitivity, and trust. Let us see in Mary how much God trusted man, how much he exalted him. Thinking about this conference, this comparison came to my mind: Mary became the window through which we could see, hear and feel God. Through her, God's grace appeared, which gave each of us a new hope, and made Mary out of a simple girl as the Mother of God. God gave her a new identity without changing her simplicity, without destroying even for a moment her deep humility. From now on, we always look at Mary through the prism of Jesus. And that's the same way God looks at you. This identity is also your identity, which is giving birth to others for God, giving God to others. You are to become a window through which others can see God, you are to give them God. This is your first and most important task that God entrusts to you today, it is your greatest responsibility: to tell God constantly YES, put yourself in the place of the one who gives God, but still remains who? A humble servant of the Lord, a humble slave of the Lord. Through the person of Mary, God shows us that the most important thing in life is to welcome Jesus, to open our hearts to His presence, to say our yes to God's greatest offer, to the greatest gift that is His Son. For this we need faith, trust and love. Our acceptance of Jesus, our yes requires sacrifice, giving up our own selfishness, our own visions of happiness. It is a devotion like Mary's, without reservations, without calculations, without any conditions, without any but, complete abandonment to God, trusting to His will, which we do not fully know what it will be, which sometimes we cannot understand, because it does not answer our questions, it does not dispel all our doubts. Each of us has gone through more than one annunciation, more than one situation in which we faced God's will as high as a wall, difficult to jump over, confusing like a maze. Despite the questions posed, not everything was clear and simple. However, it was not for God that we should understand everything, but that we should agree to His will, say yes to Him and rely on Him. The Annunciation was not a preparatory course for Mary to become the Mother of the Savior, but an invitation to God into the unknown, into a life that He himself would model, on the path He would lead. And for this we love her, and we admire that, although great in our eyes, she still remains Little and Humble, insignificant, though much significant Miriam, Filling our hearts with joy.

Father Marcin Cwierz, OSPPE

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"Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience," (Col 3:12)  

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