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Growing Closer to Jesus Through Mary

First Reading: Joel 4:12-21

Thus says the LORD:
Let the nations bestir themselves and come up
to the Valley of Jehoshaphat;
For there will I sit in judgment
upon all the neighboring nations.

Apply the sickle,
for the harvest is ripe;
Come and tread,
for the wine press is full;
The vats overflow,
for great is their malice.
Crowd upon crowd
in the valley of decision;
For near is the day of the LORD
in the valley of decision.
Sun and moon are darkened,
and the stars withhold their brightness.
The LORD roars from Zion,
and from Jerusalem raises his voice;
The heavens and the earth quake,
but the LORD is a refuge to his people,
a stronghold to the children of Israel.

Then shall you know that I, the LORD, am your God,
dwelling on Zion, my holy mountain;
Jerusalem shall be holy,
and strangers shall pass through her no more.
And then, on that day,
the mountains shall drip new wine,
and the hills shall flow with milk;
And the channels of Judah
shall flow with water:
A fountain shall issue from the house of the LORD,
to water the Valley of Shittim.
Egypt shall be a waste,
and Edom a desert waste,
Because of violence done to the people of Judah,
because they shed innocent blood in their land.
But Judah shall abide forever,
and Jerusalem for all generations.
I will avenge their blood,
and not leave it unpunished.
The LORD dwells in Zion.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 97:1-2, 5-6, 11-12

R. (12a) Rejoice in the Lord, you just!

The LORD is king; let the earth rejoice;
let the many isles be glad.
Clouds and darkness are round about him,
justice and judgment are the foundation of his throne.

R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just!

The mountains melt like wax before the LORD,
before the LORD of all the earth.
The heavens proclaim his justice,
and all peoples see his glory.

R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just!

Light dawns for the just;
and gladness, for the upright of heart.
Be glad in the LORD, you just,
and give thanks to his holy name.

R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just!

Gospel: Luke 11:27-28

While Jesus was speaking,
a woman from the crowd called out and said to him,
“Blessed is the womb that carried you
and the breasts at which you nursed.”
He replied, “Rather, blessed are those
who hear the word of God and observe it.”

NAB

oct 10

I think it’s a fairly common misconception among non-Catholics that we worship Mary. Heck, growing up in the faith, I even thought that we prayed to Mary asking for her to work in my life in some way. But, that’s just not how it goes.

Instead, we are called to venerate Mary—or treat her with respect and reverence, and we ask her to pray FOR us much like we might ask a deceased relative to do the same. The difference is Mary is the mother of God, so you know, she has an “in” with the Man himself. Imagine how willing Jesus is to listen to the petitions of His own mother.

Today’s Gospel was incredibly short, but it did touch on this issue of worshiping Mary. A woman from the crowd calls out to Jesus praising His mother: “Blessed is the womb that carried you and the breasts at which you nursed.” But He responds, “Rather, blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.” And you know who that word is, right? Jesus is the Word made flesh. We are called to ultimately worship and obey Him.

Many of us women have a strong devotion to Mary. Remember, too, it’s important to take a step back occasionally and ensure we also have ample conversations with Jesus directly.

Mary is an example beyond compare, but what she really wants is for us to go through her to form a relationship with Jesus. She loves her son and wants us to feel the same way.

Remember also to take time to speak directly with Jesus. Close your eyes and imagine sitting next to Him while you hand over your worries, express your desires, and profess your love.

photo credit

Jenna Hines has teeny army of three children and is married to a bearded fellow named Mike. A former high school English teacher, she now stays at home where she blogs and runs a crafty embroidery business. You can find out more about her here

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