August 12, 2010

The Mirror of Mary

At Mass this morning, as the ladies sang Cordero de Dios, que quitas el pecado del mundo..., I looked at the Host for a moment. Jesus' words to Philip suddenly came to me: "Whoever has seen me has seen the Father." (John 14: 9)

We often dwell on the Eucharist as continuous with the sacrifice of the Lord's Passion and death, and rightly so, as it is the sacrifice of salvation. But the Eucharist is also continuous with the mystery of the incarnation. When the eternal Word is revealed on our terms, what happens? A baby born away from home to a young couple of an obscure and occupied people, a rejected teacher, a gentle healer, a friend of the wrong people, a wrongly accused a tortured criminal, and finally, in the most sublime humility, a little piece of bread.

Like all the genuine spiritualities of Christian vocations, that of the priesthood is deeply Marian. The priest at Mass is something like her mirror image. She consented to the Word being conceived in her body that she might be the Mother of God who held the infant Jesus in her arms. The priest consents to the Body of Christ descending into his hands that he might receive Him into his body, and offer the same grace to the faithful.

O admirable heights and sublime lowliness! O sublime humility! O humble sublimity! That the Lord of the universe, God and the Son of God, so humbles Himself that for our salvation He hides Himself under the little form of bread! Look, brothers, at the humility of God and pour out your hearts before Him! Humble yourselves, as well, that you may be exalted by Him. Therefore, hold back nothing of yourselves for yourselves so that He Who gives Himself totally to you may receive you totally

--Francis of Assisi, Letter to the Entire Order.


kam said...

A beautiful reflection. Thanks.

for narnia said...

what an inspirational post, Fr. C! and certainly a very timely one. i've been in Adoration since 9:00 am this morning and almost four hours later i'm still here. i was able to read your post because i can do it from my phone. this has been a week off for me and the fourth parish where i found my confessor also has Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament every thursday from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm. as i sit here adoring our Lord, there is a great peace and quiet. people have been in and out and I have also had short periods of time where it has been just Jesus and I. it is necessary for me to fast today because of a procedure i'm having done tomorrow, so this is a part of my prayer while adoring the Lord. the words of St. Francis that you share "therefore, hold back nothing of yourselves for yourselves so that He Who gives Himself totally to you may receive you totally." i am reminded of the last words of Fr. Solanus Casey, O.F.M., Cap - "I give my soul to Jesus Christ." PAX! ~tara t~

for narnia said...

hi again, Fr. C! sorry, i think i forgot to finish a sentence in my previous comment - what i was trying to say is that those words of St. Francis are so inspirational and they reminded me of the last words of Fr. Solanus. (2:00 pm and it's just Jesus and I right now.) you're in my prayers, Fr. C! hope all is well. PAX! ~tara t~

A Bit of the Blarney said...

I must agree. This is indeed a beautiful reflection. Thank you! Cathy