“Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be.” - John 12:26
It is commonly (but mistakenly) thought that Jesus slighted our Blessed Mother when He told the woman who proclaimed “blessed is the womb that bore you”, that those who did the will of the Father who were the ones who were truly blessed. In fact, He could not possibly have given Her a bigger compliment, because there is no human being who has ever been, or will ever be created, who has accomplished more perfectly the Will of the Father (well... apart from Jesus, of course!)
A few Sundays before Easter, we read that those who want to follow Christ will be where He is. The words of the Ave Maria, "full of grace, the Lord is with you”, also show this. Mary desires only to serve God, and so She is with Him - and He with Her. Their hearts are absolutely united.
In the Annunciation, She proclaims Her total surrender to God's will with Her fiat: “be it done unto me according to Thy word”. In the Temple, She presents Jesus to God the Father, and listens to Simeon's prophecy foreshadowing the sword that will pierce both their hearts upon Calvary. At the wedding at Cana, She who knows Jesus’ heart perfectly manages to obtain for the newly wedded couple an abundance of wine and joy despite His initial hesitation, and instructs us to "do whatever He tells you". At the foot of the cross, suffering and silent, She offers Her "fiat" united to the fiat of Her Son, pronounced at Gethsemane and then consummated upon the cross. Even in the years of public ministry and after the Ascension, She does not cease to be with Him. Her heart still beats in unison with His, with desire to serve Him, offering all Her chores, prayer, sufferings and joys in Him, to Him and through Him.
There is nowhere where Christ is, where She is not. There is nothing that She desires more than what He wants. There is no thought that passes through Her mind, no word upon Her lips which is not moved by the Holy Spirit.
Now, we see that She is the heart of the early Church. The apostles are gathered in the cenacle around Her, who offers them Her maternal protection, guidance, comfort and love. On the day that Jesus sends His Holy Spirit down upon His disciples, who could receive a bigger share of the Sanctifier than Mary, whose Immaculate Heart is yearning for the Spirit to continue His work of transformation in Her and through Her, to the community of believers and the whole world? Through the descent of the Holy Spirit, Jesus crowns Her with an unimaginable explosion of the sevenfold gifts, so that Her motherhood can be extended to the entire Church -- Mary is Mother of God, Mother of the Church and Mother of all men... and our Mother!
Let us stay close to Mary, asking Her to lay Her hands upon us and to pray for us so we may receive a greater share of the Spirit. How could the Holy Spirit resist the intercession of His most faithful spouse, whose immaculate soul has been His dwelling since Her conception? With Her maternal heart and queenly power, She will surely obtain for us all the graces that we need to be faithful servants now and until the hour of our death. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; we beg you, obtain for us the grace to serve God with undivided hearts so that we too may be wherever He is -- in Heaven!
- By Winnie