As we celebrate the beauty of motherhood this Mother’s Day during this Easter season, let us reflect on one of Jesus’ last gifts to us prior to his death and resurrection, “When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son!’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home” (John 19:26-27). One of Jesus’ final acts before his death on the Cross was to give not only the beloved apostle, John the gift of his mother, but also all of humanity.
Every word spoken by Jesus has significance. Jesus is sending us a powerful message about the importance of motherhood. It is a baby in womb, John the Baptist, that was the first to recognize Jesus in his mother’s womb and to leap. Then, just prior to his death on the cross, he gave us his mother. Jesus gave us his mother as our advocate.
As we celebrate this Mother’s Day, let us ask ourselves, why choose motherhood?
The month of May is dedicated to Mary. Mary’s pregnancy was unplanned, she was just a young girl and, according to the laws of the time, her betrothed Joseph could have put her to death for being pregnant with a child that he was not the father of. Yet, despite all of the obstacles before her, Mary said a resounding yes to becoming a mother. Not just a mother, but mother of the word incarnate, the Lord’s only begotten son. When the angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will conceive in her womb by the power of the Holy Spirit she responds in the most pure and humble way, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be done to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38).
Mary perfectly submitted to the will of God and fully embraced his plans. Together, we must pray for all mothers, especially those facing the fears and doubts of pregnancy, that they may find comfort in our mother Mary and her selfless example. Let us pray for all mothers who grieve the loss of their children this Mother’s Day, and for all those who fervently desire to become mothers but are presently unable to conceive.
Walking With Moms in Need desires to be there for any woman or family in need. just as Mary, while pregnant, aided her cousin Elizabeth who was facing her own unexpected pregnancy as a woman “advanced in years” (Luke 1:18). Women we encounter in our families, in our parishes and in our communities need our assistance.
During this month of May, prayerfully consider following the example of Mary by walking with a mom in need. How is God calling you to help women and families in need? God has intricately woven each of us in our own mother’s womb and given us uniquely different gifts. We must use our talents to share the message of hope and clear the obstacles which prevent women from experiencing the joy of motherhood.
Your parish has unique gifts that can enable you to initiate Walking with Moms in Need as an ongoing work of mercy to accompany others in this way, offering caring support and hope. Contact Kathleen Wilson, Gospel of Life Coordinator, to engage your Family of Parishes. Consider including information in your bulletin about Project Rachel Ministry, the Church’s abortion healing ministry to restore those who have experienced this loss.
Kelly is the newest member of our Walking With Moms in Need (WWMIN) Team as WWMIN coordinator, at Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan. Please contact her to learn more about resources available.