SR. ELENA MARIA MANGANELLI, O.S.A.
Jesus meets his Mother
Near the cross of Jesus “stands” his Mother: this is her prayer and her
V/. We adore you, O Christ, and we
R/. Because by your holy cross you have redeemed
From the Gospel according to John 19:25-27
Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary
the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 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.
* * *
Saint John shows us Jesus’ Mother standing beneath his cross, but no Evangelist
tells us outright of an encounter between the two.
And yet this “standing” of his Mother at the cross is truly an encounter in the
most profound sense of the word. The seemingly static verb – “to stand” –
actually expresses deep inner movement and vitality.
It is the intense movement of prayer joined to tranquil acquiescence. To pray
is let oneself be caught up in the loving and true gaze of God, who reveals us
to ourselves and sends us forth on mission.
In authentic prayer, a personal encounter with Jesus makes each of us a
mother and a beloved disciple, it begets life and transmits love. It
expands our inner receptivity and weaves mystical bonds of communion, entrusting
us to one another and opening the individual you to the common we
of the Church.
Jesus most humble,
when life’s trials and injustices,
its unmerited sufferings and brutal violence
make us lash out against you,
you ask us to stand, like your Mother,
at the foot of the cross.
When our plans and expectations
fall apart or seem doomed to failure,
and make us flee in desperation,
you recall us to the strength found in waiting.
We have indeed forgotten
the power of standing still as an expression of prayer!
Come, Spirit of Truth,
be the “cry of our heart”
which incessantly and inexpressibly
stands with confidence in the presence of God!
Pater noster, qui es in caelis:
sanctificetur nomen tuum;
adveniat regnum tuum;
fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo, et in terra.
Panem nostrum cotidianum da nobis hodie;
et dimitte nobis debita nostra,
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris;
et ne nos inducas in tentationem;
sed libera nos a malo.
Quae moerebat et dolebat
pia Mater, cum videbat
Nati poenas incliti.
Cf. Commentary on the Psalms
, 118, d. 29, 1.
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