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Sunday 11 May 2014

Great Article

Thanks to Emile for the heads-up.

Well, under a tornado watch

...and as my English son use to say, the only thing exciting about Iowa is the weather.

We have weather, not just climate.

Ciao for a bit....

Earlier Today-Five Posts for Mothers and Mother Mary

Do not miss these...

On Code-Breakers Two

Baptism breaks the bonds of sin and death, stops a person from being a slave of satan and makes one an adopted child of God and heir of heaven.

Sanctifying grace gives the Life of God to the soul and the Indwelling of the Trinity. The virtues are bestowed on the soul to aid natural law written on the heart.

But, concupiscence and the weakness of family sins remains to be broken, the soul to be purified.

A code-breaker helps remove the old detritus in families from ages of sin and corruption.

Our Blessed Lady is a great aid in the breaking away from sin. If one is faced with addictions or the lack of forgiveness in families, go to Mary. If one is faced with habitual sins seen among family members, such as negativity, go to Mary.

The closer the code-breaker is to Our Lady, the better the fight. D, S, B, M, A, R, P, and others know this truth, of staying close to Mary in order to break the code.

Code-breakers frequently have great devotion and a relationship with their guardian angels.

Sin must be confessed in the confessional, but code-breakers can pray for the realization of sin in a person or family, and the healing of the consequences of those sins.

If you are a single code-breaker, join this group, with the permission of your spiritual director.

One should not fight spiritual battles alone as code-breakers.

To be continued....

Are You A Code-Breaker? 
In my short life, I have observed, that in many Catholic families, one Catholic seems designated to be "the code-breaker". This person is the one who prays for all the other members of the family, especially those who are fallen away. Sometimes the Catholic code-breaker is in a Catholic family. But, sometimes the code-breaker is a convert, and, therefore, the only Catholic in the family.

The code-breaker, (my term), could be a Catholic who marries into a family steeped in falsity and sin, and begins the work of breaking the codes of error.

I have met several code-breakers. Some, like the latter description, are women who have married into families where there is a long history of Masonry or addictions, and these ladies break the codes so that these are no longer passed down in the families.

Some are women who have prayed against deceit, and even incest in the families, and these sins stop.

Code-breakers work hard in the spiritual world, praying, having Masses said, doing penance to break the code of sin.

Of course, the first code-breaker in the world was Our Lady, Mother Mary, who as the Immaculate Conception, broke the code of Original Sin, allowing Christ to become Incarnate and free us from sin and death.

She suffered for breaking the code of evil, but she teaches all the other code-breakers how to suffer, pray, do penance.

Perhaps because women share more on the spiritual plain than men, with other women, I only know very few male code-breakers. Most of those I know are women.

Sometimes, they experience spiritual warfare increasing as they pray against evil in the families.

Such people are gifts to a family.

Are you the code-breaker in your family? If so, take your role seriously. Do not "grow faint". Keep breaking the code of sin and death by prayer and sacrifice.

Code-breakers remind me of Isaac McCaslin, William Faulkner's character in Go Down, Moses. Isaac moves out of the Manse because of the sins of his ancestors and wants to atone for the horrible evil in the family. He is the code-breaker, literally, finding out the incest of the past through a ledger book of Uncle Buck's.  Feeling the land of the plantation is cursed, Isaac gives his inheritance to his second-cousin, McCaslin Edmonds. Years ago, I decided on the term "code-breaker" because of Faulkner's story.

Some code-breakers move out of the Manse.

Some code-breakers move into the Manse from the outside.

Are you a code-breaker? Have you met a code-breaker? Can you sense if the woman or man you are dating is the code-breaker for your family?  Usually, the person who is a code-breaker knows this spiritual reality. Let God lead you to the code-breaker for your family.

On this Mother's Day, I salute all the mother-code-breakers I know. May God bless you. May God protect you and keep you in the Palm of His Hand.
May I add St. Paul's comment from Colossians 1: 24

I am now rejoicing in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am completing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church.

He is describing a code-breaker. Christ invites some to enter into His suffering, His Passion, for the sake of others. Such is the call of the code-breaker. Paul's family was the Gentile world. Thankfully, most code-breakers have a smaller sphere in which to break the code.

to be continued later.....

Honoring Mothers Part Five

Newman in his Meditations describes a woman of great strength and courage. Mary did not leave Christ alone on the Cross.

She, like so many mothers who pray to her for perseverance, may be honored for her undying love and faithfulness.

My son became very ill several times in his life. Once, when he was seven, and we had no insurance in the States, he was suffering from acute pneumonia.

I could see that he was slipping away and for days I held his little self in my arms all night so he could breath.

Finally, in the middle of the night, I knew instinctively that if I could not get a doctor to prescribe him an antibiotic, he would die. The hospital refused to see us, as we had no insurance. I took my phone and began phoning doctors in the Yellow Pages, A...B...and so on.

In the Bs, a doctor answered. I told him the situation and he said he could not order a prescription as he did not know me and I had no insurance. I replied, strongly, "If this child dies, his life is on your head."

And, the doctor said, "OK, OK, what pharmacy is closest to you?"

Friends picked up the strong antibiotic, and my son got through the night, as I held him upright to enable him to breath properly. I bless that doctor today. Sometimes being a mom takes courage.

How many mothers had to sacrifice nights and days by the side of sick children? How many mothers denied themselves things and comforts for their children? This type of behavior is normal for good moms.

Today, let us honor mothers who suffered for us. Let us honor Mary who suffered for us. Mary could not interfere or stop the suffering of her son. She could only share in that suffering.

From Newman...

Mary is the "Turris Eburnea," the Ivory Tower

 A TOWER is a fabric which rises higher and more conspicuous than other objects in its neighbourhood. Thus, when we say a man "towers" over his fellows, we mean to signify that they look small in comparison of him.

This quality of greatness is instanced in the Blessed Virgin. Though she suffered more keen and intimate anguish at our Lord's Passion and Crucifixion than any of the Apostles by reason of her being His Mother, yet consider how much more noble she was amid her deep distress than they were. When our Lord underwent His agony, they slept for sorrow. They could not wrestle with their deep disappointment and despondency; they could not master it; it confused, numbed, and overcame their senses. And soon after, when St. Peter was asked by bystanders whether he was not one of our Lord's disciples, he denied it.

Nor was he alone in this cowardice. The Apostles,  one and all, forsook our Lord and fled, though St. John returned. Nay, still further, they even lost faith in Him, and thought all the great expectations which He had raised in them had ended in a failure. How different this even from the brave conduct of St. Mary Magdalen! and still more from that of the Virgin Mother! It is expressly noted of her that shestood by the Cross. She did not grovel in the dust, but stood upright to receive the blows, the stabs, which the long Passion of her Son inflicted upon her every moment.

In this magnanimity and generosity in suffering she is, as compared with the Apostles, fitly imaged as a Tower. But towers, it may be said, are huge, rough, heavy, obtrusive, graceless structures, for the purposes of war, not of peace; with nothing of the beautifulness, refinement, and finish which are conspicuous in Mary. It is true: therefore she is called the Tower of Ivory, to suggest to us, by the brightness, purity, and exquisiteness of that material, how transcendent is the loveliness and the gentleness of the Mother of God.

Honoring Mothers Part Four

Home is where the heart is and one of the most grievous parts of my suffering in my life is that I have not been able to provide a home for my son.

When I was younger, I bought a house but could not keep up the payments, working and home schooling. God sold my house in three days after telling me in prayer to sell it. That was a blessing coming out of great hardship.

But, not to have a home for my son is an incredible pain, which most of my readers have not experienced.

Without a place to call home, one must rely totally on God for comfort. And, sometimes, God denies that comfort.

Mary had to live years without Jesus, until He called her to her home on  heaven. Of course, she was in union with Him in the unitive state of perfection, as no other saint has been, but she was separated from His entire Being. Only in her death and assumption did she again unite with Christ, the Father and the Spirit totally, experiencing the highest place in heaven given to a human, Imagine, a woman has the highest place after Christ, the God-Man.

Perhaps Mary was the reason for Lucifer's rebellion. Perhaps, this once perfect angel did not want a human woman as the highest of all in the empyrean after the Trinity.

Let us honor today all those good women who made homes for us in our pasts. Some of our mothers are still at home on earth, but some have gone home to heaven. Let us honor the home-makers.

Here is more on the house at Ephesus from the excellent Dayton University site.

Q: What is the latest news on Mary's house in Ephesus?
A:EPHESUS, Turkey, NOV. 29, 2006 (
Benedict XVI celebrated Mass, which was attended by part of the small Turkish Catholic community, at the house where, according to tradition, the Blessed Virgin Mary once lived.  From the first centuries, numerous Christian authors from the East and West mentioned John's and the Blessed Virgin's stay in this city, in which were located the headquarters of the first of the seven Churches mentioned in the Book of Revelation.  But, how was it determined that this was the house of Jesus' Mother?  The finding took place at the end of the nineteenth century.
On July 29, 1891, two Vincentian priests, French Fathers Henry Jung and Eugène Poulin, gave in to the insistent requests of Sister Marie de Mandat-Grancey, superior of the Daughters of Charity who worked in the French hospital of Izmir.  The priests set out to look for Mary's house, having as their compass the vision of German mystic Blessed Anna Katharina Emmerick (1774-1824).  From her bed in a village of Westphalia, where she spent the last twelve years of her life, the mystic received visions of the life of Jesus and Mary.  These visions were recorded and published after her death by a German writer, Clemens Brentano.  The two priests, former soldiers of the French army, climbed the Bulbul Dag ("nightingale's hill" in Turkish), which rises above the Ephesus plain.  After much effort, they found the ruins of a house near a fountain, a few kilometers from Ephesus.  The house seemed to have been used as a chapel--which fit perfectly with Emmerick's description.
Pilgrimage site
It was the Panaya uc Kapoulou Monastiri, as the Orthodox Christians of the area called it--the "Monastery of the Three Doors of Panaya, the All Holy," given the three arches of the facade.  These Greek Christians used to go to the site on pilgrimage during the octave of the feast of Mary's Dormition, August 15.  The Vincentian priests did some research among the residents of the area and confirmed the existence of a centuries-old devotion which recognized in the ruined chapel the place of the last residence of Meryem Anas, Mother Mary.
Archaeological studies carried out in 1898 and 1899 brought to light among the ruins the remains of a first-century house, as well as the ruins of a small village that was established around the house since the seventh century.  Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) was positive about these findings and re-established in the Ordo Romanus a note that on the feast of the Assumption mentioned Ephesus as the probable place of the Blessed Virgin's Dormition.  The Meryem Ana shrine, in front of which Benedict XVI celebrated Mass today, was restored in the 1950s.  Pastoral care of the site has been entrusted to the Capuchin friars.
Mary's House was visited by Pope Paul VI in 1967 and by Pope John Paul II in 1979.  It is the object of Muslim pilgrimages too, as Mary is presented in the Koran as "the only woman who has not been touched by the devil."

Here is how Benedict XVI summarized his recent visit to Ephesus and the "House of Mary":
"The second day took me to Ephesus, and I thus found myself rapidly in the innermost 'circle' of the trip, in direct contact with the Catholic community.  In Ephesus, in fact, in a pleasant place called 'Nightingale's Hill,' looking over the Aegean Sea, is the Shrine of Mary's House.  It is an ancient and small chapel that has arisen around the little house that, according to a very ancient tradition, the Apostle John built for the Virgin Mary, after going with her to Ephesus.  Jesus himself had entrusted them to one another when, before dying on the cross, he said to Mary: 'Woman, behold, your son!' and to John: 'Behold, your mother!' (John 19:26-27)
Archaeological investigations have demonstrated that this place has been since time immemorial a place of Marian devotion, loved also by Muslims, who go there regularly to venerate her whom they callMeryem Ana, Mother Mary.  In the garden next to the shrine I celebrated holy Mass for a group of faithful who had come from nearby Izmir and other parts of Turkey, as well as from abroad.  We felt truly 'at home' in 'Mary's House,' and in that atmosphere of peace we prayed for peace in the Holy Land and throughout the world....
Let us pray, moreover, so that through the intercession of Mary Most Holy, the Holy Spirit will make this apostolic journey fruitful, and encourage throughout the world the mission of the Church, instituted by Christ to proclaim to all peoples the Gospel of truth, peace and love.
... I visited Ephesus and the sanctuary nearby where, according to an ancient tradition, the Apostle John constructed a house for the Virgin Mary."
Posted in Zenit on 12/8/2006 from Vatican City

Honoring Mothers Part Three

Too many people see their mothers only with material eyes, the eyes of fear or judgement or sin. Sadly, many have suffered terrible sins through their own mothers-neglect, emotional manipulation, even sexual abuse.

Some have had to admit that they must be separated from their physical mothers in order to pursue holiness. But, we all have another Mother given to us by Christ at Calvary.

Mary is Our Mother.

Mary, Our Perfect Mother, wants to comfort those who have suffered through her perfection and grace.

Mary ended up not in Jerusalem or Nazareth, but with St. John in Ephesus. She had to leave some of her own people in order to obey Christ.

Since my son has left, it has been one of my desire's to go to Ephesus and see the house there. I would also love to see the house at Loreto. Mary left all she knew to go to the land of unbelievers. The Perfect One lived among non-Jews and pagans. But, she had John until her death.

Newman writes this:

Mary is the "Vas Spirituale," the Spiritual Vessel

TO be spiritual is to live in the world of spirits—as St. Paul says, "Our conversation is in Heaven." To be spiritually-minded is to see by faith all those good and holy beings who actually surround us, though we see them not with our bodily eyes; to see them by faith as vividly as we see the things of earth—the green country, the blue sky, and the brilliant sunshine. Hence it is that, when saintly souls are favoured with heavenly visions, these visions are but the extraordinary continuations and the crown, by a divine intuition, of objects which, by the ordinary operation of grace, are ever before their minds.

These visions consoled and strengthened the Blessed Virgin in all her sorrows. The Angels who were around her understood her, and she understood them, with a directness which is not to be expected in their intercourse with us who have inherited from Adam the taint of sin. Doubtless; but still let us never forget that as she in her sorrows was comforted {55} by Angels, so it is our privilege in the many trials of life to be comforted, in our degree, by the same heavenly messengers of the Most High; nay, by Almighty God Himself, the third Person of the Holy Trinity, who has taken on Himself the office of being our Paraclete, or Present Help.

Let all those who are in trouble take this comfort to themselves, if they are trying to lead a spiritual life. If they call on God, He will answer them. Though they have no earthly friend, they have Him, who, as He felt for His Mother when He was on the Cross, now that He is in His glory feels for the lowest and feeblest of His people.

Mary is the "Consolatrix Afflictorum," the Consoler of the Afflicted

 ST. PAUL says that his Lord comforted him in all his tribulations, that he also might be able to comfort them who are in distress, by the encouragement which he received from God. This is the secret of true consolation: those are able to comfort others who, in their own case, have been much tried, and have felt the need of consolation, and have received it. So of our Lord Himself it is said: "In that He Himself hath suffered and been tempted, He is able to succour those also that are tempted."

And this too is why the Blessed Virgin is the comforter of the afflicted. We all know how special a mother's consolation is, and we are allowed to call Mary our Mother from the time that our Lord from the Cross established the relation of mother and son between her and St. John. And she especially can console us because she suffered more than mothers in general. Women, at least delicate women, are commonly shielded from rude experience of the highways of  the world; but she, after our Lord's Ascension, was sent out into foreign lands almost as the Apostles were, a sheep among wolves. In spite of all St. John's care of her, which was as great as was St. Joseph's in her younger days, she, more than all the saints of God, was a stranger and a pilgrim upon earth, in proportion to her greater love of Him who had been on earth, and had gone away. As, when our Lord was an Infant, she had to flee across the desert to the heathen Egypt, so, when He had ascended on high, she had to go on shipboard to the heathen Ephesus, where she lived and died.
O ye who are in the midst of rude neighbours or scoffing companions, or of wicked acquaintance, or of spiteful enemies, and are helpless, invoke the aid of Mary by the memory of her own sufferings among the heathen Greeks and the heathen Egyptians.

Honoring Mothers Part Two

As introduced in the last post, Mary and Jesus ended their happy and sacred time on earth together at the Wedding Feast at Cana. Newman writes a long meditation on her suffering after that day. I repeat it here.

Today, let us honor our mothers for their steadfastness to the Faith, if they are Catholic, and to their loving life, as they bore us and gave us to the world.

If one has lost one's mother, one can honor her with prayers and masses.

If one experienced a mother who was not good and even a great sinner, pray for her today, on this day of honoring mothers.

from Newman...

The last day of the earthly intercourse between Jesus and Mary was at the marriage feast at Cana. Yet even then there was something taken from that blissful intimacy, for they no longer lived simply for each other, but showed themselves in public, and began to take their place in the dispensation which was opening. He manifested forth His glory by His first miracle; and hers also, by making her intercession the medium of it. He honoured her still more, by breaking through the appointed order of things for her sake, and though His time of miracles was not come, anticipating it at her instance. While He wrought His miracle, however, He took leave of her in the words "Woman, what is between thee and Me?" Thus He parted with her absolutely, though He parted with a blessing. It was leaving Paradise feeble and alone.
7. For in truth it was fitting that He who was to be the true High Priest, should thus, while He exercised His office for the whole race of man, be free from all human ties, and sympathies of the flesh. And one reason for His long abode at Nazareth with His Mother may have been to show, that, as He gave up His Father's and His own glory on high, to become man, so He gave up the innocent and pure joys of His earthly home, in order that He might be a Priest. So, in the old time, Melchisedech is described as without father or mother. So the Levites showed themselves truly worthy of the sacerdotal office and were made the sacerdotal tribe, because they steeled themselves against natural affection, said to father or mother, "I know you not," and raised the sword against their own kindred, when the honour of the Lord of armies demanded the sacrifice. In like manner our Lord said to Mary, "What is between Me and thee?" It was the setting apart of the sacrifice, the first ritual step of the Great Act which was to be solemnly performed for the salvation of the world. "What is between Me and thee, O woman?" is the offertory before the oblation of the Host. O my dear Lord, Thou who hast given up Thy mother for me, give me grace cheerfully to give up all my earthly friends and relations for Thee.
8. The Great High Priest said to His kindred, "I know you not." Then, as He did so, we may believe that the most tender heart of Jesus looked back upon His whole time since His birth, and called before Him those former days of His infancy and childhood, when He had been with others from whom He had long been parted. Time was when St. Elizabeth and the Holy Baptist had formed part of the Holy Family. St. Elizabeth, like St. Joseph, had been removed by death, and was waiting His coming to break that bond which detained both her and St. Joseph from heaven. St. John had been cut off from his home and mankind, and the sympathies of earth, long since—and had now begun to preach the coming Saviour, and was waiting and expecting His manifestation.
Give me grace, O Jesus, to live in sight of that blessed company. Let my life be spent in the presence of Thee and Thy dearest friends. Though I see them not, let not what I do see seduce me to give my heart elsewhere. Because Thou hast blessed me so much and given to me friends, let me not depend or rely or throw myself in any way upon them, but in Thee be my life, and my conversation and daily walk among those with whom Thou didst surround Thyself on earth, and dost now delight Thyself in heaven. Be my soul with Thee, and, because with Thee, with Mary and Joseph and Elizabeth and John.
9. Nor did He, as time went on, give up Mary and Joseph only. There still remained to Him invisible attendants and friends, and He had their sympathy, but them He at length gave up also. From the time of His birth we may suppose He held communion with the spirits of the Old Fathers, who had prepared His coming and prophesied of it. On one occasion He was seen all through the night, conversing with Moses and Elias, and that conversation was about His Passion. What a field of thought is thus opened to us, of which we know how little. When He passed whole nights in prayer, it was greater refreshment to soul and body than sleep. Who could support and (so to say) re-invigorate the Divine Lord better than that "laudabilis numerus" of Prophets of which He was the fulfilment and antitype? Then He might talk with Abraham who saw His day, or Moses who spoke to Him; or with His especial types, David and Jeremias; or with those who spoke most of Him, as Isaias and Daniel. And here was a fund of great sympathy. When He came up to Jerusalem to suffer, He might be met in spirit by all the holy priests, who had offered sacrifices in shadow of Him; just as now the priest recalls in Mass the sacrifices of Abel, Abraham, and Melchisedech, and the fiery gift which purged the lips of Isaias, as well as holding communion with the Apostles and Martyrs.
10. Let us linger for a while with Mary—before we follow the steps of her Son, our Lord. There was an occasion when He refused leave to one who would bid his own home farewell, before he followed Him; and such was, as it seems, almost His own way with His Mother; but will He be displeased, if we one instant stop with her, though our meditation lies with Him? O Mary, we are devout to thy seven woes—but was not this, though not one of those seven, one of the greatest, and included those that followed, from thy knowledge of them beforehand? How didst thou bear that first separation from Him? How did the first days pass when thou wast desolate? where didst thou hide thyself? where didst thou pass the long three years and more, while  He was on His ministry? Once—at the beginning of it—thou didst attempt to get near Him, and then we hear nothing of thee, till we find thee standing at His cross. And then, after that great joy of seeing Him again, and the permanent consolation, never to be lost, that with Him all suffering and humiliation was over, and that never had she to weep for Him again, still she was separated from him for many years, while she lived in the flesh, surrounded by the wicked world, and in the misery of His absence.
11. The blessed Mary, among her other sorrows, suffered the loss of her Son, after He had lived under the same roof with her for thirty years. When He was no more than twelve, He gave her a token of what was to be, and said, "I must be about my Father's business;" and when the time came, and He began His miracles, He said to her, "What is to Me and to thee?"—What is common to us two?—and soon He left her. Once she tried to see Him, but in vain, and could not reach Him for the crowd, and He made no effort to receive her, nor said a kind word; and then at the last, once more she tried, and she reached him in time, to see Him hanging on the cross and dying. He was only forty days on earth after His resurrection, and then He left her in old age to finish her life without Him. Compare her thirty happy years, and her time of desolation.
12. I see her in her forlorn home, while her Son and Lord was going up and down the land without a place to lay His head, suffering both because she was so desolate and He was so exposed. How dreary passed the day; and then came reports that He was in some peril or distress. She heard, perhaps, He had been led into the wilderness to be tempted. She would have shared all His sufferings, but was not permitted. Once there was a profane report which was believed by many, that He was beside Himself, and His friends and kindred went out to get possession of Him. She went out too to see Him, and tried to reach Him. She could not for the crowd. A message came to Him to that effect, but He made no effort to receive her, nor said a kind word. She went back to her home disappointed, without the sight of Him. And so she remained, perhaps in company with those who did not believe in Him.
13. I see her too after His ascension. This, too, is a time of bereavement, but still of consolation. It was still a twilight time, but not a time of grief. The Lord was absent, but He was not on earth, He was not in suffering. Death had no power over Him. And He came to her day by day in the Blessed Sacrifice. I see the Blessed Mary at Mass, and St. John celebrating. She is waiting for the moment of her Son's Presence: now she converses with Him in the sacred rite; and what shall I say now? She receives Him, to whom once she gave birth.
O Holy Mother, stand by me now at Mass time, when Christ comes to me, as thou didst minister to Thy infant Lord—as Thou didst hang upon His words when He grew up, as Thou wast found under His cross. Stand by me, Holy Mother, that I may {318} gain somewhat of thy purity, thy innocence, thy faith, and He may be the one object of my love and my adoration, as He was of thine.

Five Posts for Mother's Day--Honoring Mothers Part One

Mother's Day is an old and venerable day of celebrating Mothers which started in Medieval England. The English celebrated "Lady's Day" on the first Sunday after the Annunciation in order to honor Mother Mary and all mothers.

The celebration indicated the honor which the Church bestowed upon women because of the love and devotion to Our Lady.

In the next five posts, I shall celebrate Mother's Day with a meditation on the Meditations of Newman, already referred to last week.

Mary, Our Mother had the perfect Mother-Son relationship-the perfect Mother loving the Perfect Son in a union joining the Trinity, Father, Son and Spirit on earth.

But, Newman points out that Mary's last intimate moment with her Son, before the Day of the Resurrection, was at the Wedding Feast at Cana. On that day, Mary gave her Son to the world, ending 30 years and nine months of intimacy.

I can only imagine the pain of Mary's sacrifice. She started Christ's public ministry with her request for more wine, ending her own special time with Jesus.

I can feel a bit of this giving my son to the Church so far away and in a distant land. I gave Him to God when He was born and to Mary when he was older. Like the separation of Christ from His Mother, this separation has allowed my son to do what he must for the Kingdom of God to be built on this earth.

Mary had to then endure great suffering, as she had already lost Joseph, just as I lost all comfort of a home.

But, as Mary is perfect and without sin, her suffering was horrible and unjust. It is only because she loved Christ so much and understood His mission that she could give Him up to us.

Newman points out two things-one that Mary may have had to live with unbelievers in Christ, with Jewish relatives who did not believe in Christ as the Messiah, the Savior.

Secondly, Newman points out that Mary only once came to see Jesus, perhaps to see if He was alright, having heard stories of His pain and misery, trying to see Him as any Mother would.

But, He would not allow His Mother to comfort Him, not even on Calvary, where the pain of the world lay on the shoulders of His Mother as well as on Him.

She is the co-redeemer.

Newman notes this:

Mary is the "Vas Honorabile," the Vessel of Honour

ST. PAUL calls elect souls vessels of honour: of honour, because they are elect or chosen; and vessels, because, through the love of God, they are filled with God's heavenly and holy grace. How much more then is Mary a vessel of honour by reason of her having within her, not only the grace of God, but the very Son of God, formed as regards His flesh and blood out of her!
But this title "honorabile," as applied to Mary, admits of a further and special meaning. She was a martyr without the rude dishonour which accompanied the sufferings of martyrs. The martyrs were seized, haled about, thrust into prison with the vilest criminals, and assailed with the most blasphemous words and foulest speeches which Satan could inspire. Nay, such was the unutterable trial also of the holy women, young ladies, the spouses of Christ, whom the heathen seized, tortured, and put to death. Above all, our Lord Himself, whose sanctity was greater than any created excellence or vessel of grace—even He, as we know well, was buffeted, stripped, scourged, mocked, dragged about, and then stretched, nailed, lifted up on a high cross, to the gaze of a brutal multitude.

But He, who bore the sinner's shame for sinners, spared His Mother, who was sinless, this supreme indignity. Not in the body, but in the soul, she suffered. True, in His Agony she was agonised; in His Passion she suffered a fellow-passion; she was crucified with Him; the spear that pierced His breast pierced through her spirit. Yet there were no visible signs of this intimate martyrdom; she stood up, still, collected, motionless, solitary, under the Cross of her Son, surrounded by Angels, and shrouded in her virginal sanctity from the notice of all who were taking part in His Crucifixion.

So, we honor our mothers and all mothers today for the sufferings they have borne for us, including our births.

We honor our friends who are mothers.

We, also, honor our spiritual mothers, such as the mothers at Tyburn.

In this first post of the day, let us remember that the Church wants us to honor mothers.

to be continued...and see my Litany of Loreto Rosary on this blog.

There are several posts covering that meditation, which I wrote years ago.