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Apostolic Movement

Mary, Mother of God and our Mother

Father Angel Lorenzo Strada

Mary is Mother of the whole Christ, of the historical and the mystical Christ. She is Mother of the Head and of the members.

Mary is the historical site where God becomes flesh to dwell among us. Christ grows in her womb, is born and develops totally depending on his mother. From her he learns his first steps, his first words, his first games, the prayers of his people. At her side he advances in age and wisdom. God has chosen her, and she has given her free consent. And with total generosity, together with Joseph, she presents her home to the Redeemer. She fully adheres to his mission and becomes his companion and collaborator.

The spiritual motherhood for all men is a consequence and complement of divine motherhood. It is based on the reality of its permanent association with the person and work of the Savior. Mary is “Mother of the total Christ”, of the historical and mystical Christ. She is Mother of the Head and of the members (St. Augustine).

The Second Vatican Council affirms that this motherhood of Mary in the order of grace continues uninterruptedly since Mary never abandons her children, “for once taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this saving office but by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation. Through her maternal charity, she cares for the brethren of her Son, who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led into their blessed home. Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked in the Church under the titles of Advocate, Helper, Benefactress, and Mediatrix. This, however, is so understood that it neither takes away anything from nor adds anything to the dignity and efficacy of Christ the one Mediator.” (Lumen Gentium, 62)

Mother of God

Father Kentenich highlights the presence and activity of Mother Mary in our lives: “The Woman formed by Christ is also the Mother who gives form to Christ in believers. She is simply the one whose task is to conceive and give birth to Christ. As a particular individual she remains totally in the background. She no longer has private interests, or, in other words, her most personal and very personal interest, her most intimate interest belongs, in a perfect form, to Christ, both in his historical uniqueness as well as in his members. She is so attuned with him, that it seems almost as if she has become part of him. She is and remains, always and everywhere, the one who conceives and gives birth to Christ as her main task.

The love that Mary gave to the historical Christ is transferred – so St. Bernard thinks – to the mystical Christ, to his members. This is why we are never alone. In every situation she turns her gaze towards us, as she did with Christ when he was alive. Just as she calmed the tears and the pain of the newborn in Bethlehem, just as she stood by the cross beside the dying Christ, even at the moment when he felt abandoned by the Father, so she also accompanies us, members of Christ, from the cradle to the tomb.”

(Fr. Kentenich, The Secret of Schoenstatt’s Vitality, Part 2, Covenant Spirituality, Santiago de Chile 2011, p. 117).

P. Ángel Strada


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