My goodness, we’ve got quite the weekend this week! First of all, congratulations to our first communion boys and girls. It’s a wonderful time of year as we celebrate our first communions. It’s good to see kids excited, and excited about Jesus. It’s nice to see them all dressed up in their outfits, and how they come to understand just how important it really is to receive Jesus. It’s a good thing that we make a fuss over them. It’s good to know that it’s important. There are some things which are simply good and wholesome. First communion is certainly one of them.
Now of course, that brings us to the other big thing that happens this weekend. There’s one thing that’s sort of required before a kid can make their first communion, before they can come to church, before they can be baptized...or well...before they can do anything else. In order to do any of that...well, they have to be born, and to be born, you have to have a mother! So this weekend, we also celebrate Mother’s Day! It’s an important time for all of us to appreciate what our mothers do. Even for those who no longer have a biological mother, we also take time to appreciate those strong women in our lives who have taken on that role of mother for us. It’s an important role, and one that we must always remember.
On that note, I wanted to share a little bit of good news. Back in January, in one of the homilies, I told the story of one of my former students, Liz, who after finding herself unexpectedly pregnant, managed, with the support of her community, to get her life put back together. Then, I told everyone that I had told her story to students at another school. After mass, a girl came forward to tell me her story, how she was pregnant and was afraid to tell anyone, and how Liz’s story gave her the courage to step forward. Well, I got a phone call this week. That second girl’s baby is healthy and doing well, and they asked me to come back to celebrate the baptism of their baby.
In a world that often berates young people for their lack of faith, for their laziness, or for their poor decisions. It’s good to know that the spirit of the Gospel is alive and well, that even from bad situations there are still success stories, that there are good, faithful people out there of all ages, who can help turn a bad situation into a success story. Who can turn a scared young woman into a loving mother. We have a savior who can start with sin and lead us to redemption. We have a God who chose an unassuming young woman to become his mother, who now reigns as queen of heaven.
So with that in mind I’d invite us all to reflect on the blessing of the mother that happens in the rite of Baptism: God the Father, through his Son, the Virgin Mary’s child, has brought joy to all Christian mothers, as they see the hope of eternal life shine on their children. May he bless the mother of this child. She now thanks God for the gift of her child. May she be one with him (her) in thanking him for ever in heaven, in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen
Happy Mother’s Day!