Presentation of the BVM

21 November 2006: Presentation of Mary
Zechariah 2, 14-17; Luke 1, 46-55; Matthew 12, 46-50

The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary is from a pious tradition based on the apocryphal Proto-Gospel of James. It holds that Mary, as a child, was presented and educated near the Temple in Jerusalem. Although this is not historical, it reminds us of the Church’s dogma of the Immaculate Conception, that God has granted her the grace to be free from original sin, in view of her future role as the Mother of His Son, Jesus.

The tradition carries with it a great consolation. It means that it is also possible for us, human beings to be in union with God. In the Gospel today, Jesus presents to us a practical truth: that what constitutes our being truly brothers and sisters is not our blood relations, but what we share in common Thus, for Jesus, whoever would like to be brothers and sisters to Him, must obey the will of God, the way Mary said ‘yes’ to God’s invitation to be Jesus’ mother.

Our daily lives teach us this truth: we actually find ourselves closer to people who do not belong to our kinsfolk. The reality is that sometimes the deepest friendships are not blood relationships. They are our relationships with whoever connects with us: mind to mind, heart to heart. They are with people who share our common interests, common goals, common principles, or those who compliment them. Thus, it is possible for friends to like each other’s company because they are of opposite poles, but they share a common affection for each other. It is in this sharing that they become truly kith and kin.

There is reason why Jesus calls us his friends, his “mother and brothers and sisters to him.” St. Robert Southwell SJ once wrote as follows:

“If you love a friend so much, if he or she is so attractive that everything he asks of you, you would agree to; and if it is so sweet to sit and talk with him, describe your mishaps to him--- then with ho much more trust should you betake yourself to God, the God of goodness, converse with him, show him your weakness and distress, for he has greater care of you that you have of yourself, indeed he is more intimately you than you are.”

St. Robert Southwell SJ affirms that there is indeed something in our experience of friendship that brings us closer to the Lord, for every experience of friendship provides us with a taste of heaven --- just as Jesus said, “whoever does the will of the Father is brother, sister and friend to me.” And the greatest example of this, is our very own Mother.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes i agreed,we find ourselves much more closer to our friends than to our own family.Friends can easily understand us,give advices based on thier own exprience's...but i do believe that Friends can also "hurt"& put us down instead of understanding& comforting us.Well that's life...we should accept the fact that "JESUS" is the only true& real best friend that we have in life no matter what.

Jessel Gerard said...

o yes, true that friends can hurt. but friendship is two-way. you're not friends if the other does not want you to be his/her friend. we cannot force ourselves on others as well. we might choose the people we want to comfort us, but they should want you to be their friend too. not all people we like, like us in return.

so careful with those we call 'friends'. you might be the only one who believes that there is a relationship, when there is, actually, none. we can get hurt because of presumption.

at the same time, we must respect the other's decision. even Jesus chose his disciples; and those disciples decided to follow Jesus. it is never imposed or forced on us.

mg said...

No,i can't understand..coz' i believe that when somebody accept& recognized us there is already a frienship between both of you,unless he/she refused. Yes i do clearly 'understand'&'respect'those disciples who are intended to follow Jesus. we should be thankful instead, for we are the instrument of bringing back them closer to the Lord. Why?it is 'bad' to asked help& comfort for those people closed to "HIH"? or should i say, some that we called a 'friend'misunderstood us. we should think twice first before concluding one's situation, without knowing that we already hurt someone. as "God" said we are all brother,sister,&friend...nothing more.

Jessel Gerard said...

Yes, we are all brothers, sisters and friends. And we strive to live this ideal, however, we have different personalities. You see, I think it is not safe to assume that there is immediate friendship when the person recognizes you. For example, the saleslady in SM who recognize me in Payatas, is not necessarily my friend. Acquaintance: yes. Not friendship. Friendship takes time, investment and enjoyment.

Mg said...

Oh i see, so it means that this person don't want to accept someone as his/her friend coz'its only just aquaintance? so sad...i'm so sorry if it is hard for me to understand. even i'm on my 12yrs happy married life now, nakakahiyang sabihin na until now pala i still can't understand what "Friendship" really is...i've met so many people around the world but still can't understand the difference between 'Acquaintance'&'Friendship'. i thought that if someone closed to "GOD" will be my friend he/she can lead me to a right direction straight to 'HIM'. it so hard na malayo tayo to our own family&love ones,lalo na christmas is near, but still need to be away just for them to face the trials &sufferings alone. now i feel that i'm totally lost my way, i was wrong pala..i learned from you that not all nice &God fearing people will accept friendship for those who needed it. Thank you so much to your well said meaning about what 'friendship' really is, but still i'm cofused, many questions needs ans. Thank's, God Bless You.

evelyn said...

I think you should be careful in your conclusions. It is also necessary to examine yourself: how much of a friend have you been to him/her? Have you been accessible? Have you considered his/her circumstances?

Mary Grace said...

i'm more careful with my conclusions,& i do examine myself very well. how about the other side? well i have nothing to say na...as "GOD" said,'we are all 'stewards' with each other in "HIS" kingdom.