A Mother’s Heart

Today the Catholic Church celebrates the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The Gospel passage for today’s feast is Luke’s account of the finding of Jesus in the temple, a selection I initially found strange, but then realized it is actually quite a perfect fit.

Any mother who has ever “lost” her child – i.e., all of us at one point or another – appreciate that Gospel scene. The horror of Mary when she realizes her son is not with the caravan. Her relief when he is found. And her realization (at his cryptic reply that he must be in his Father’s house) that ultimately, her son must leave her and follow his own path.

I sat this morning with that passage and with the image of the heart of Mary – the heart of a mother. I know that heart:

The heart that wants to see you child fly even while fearing her falls.

The heart that wants to hold her close even while knowing she needs to roam.

The heart that knows she will suffer injuries you cannon heal with a kiss and a bandaid.

The heart that knows you will cease to be able to know what is best for her and have to rely on her judgments.

A mother’s heart. Something worth celebrating.