Marian Devotion (Day 16)
May 16, 2024
Fr. John Colacino C.PP.S.
Day 16
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (2:41-51)

Every year his parents used to go to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover. And when Jesus was twelve years old, they made the journey as usual for the feast. When the days of the feast were over and they set off for home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents were not aware of this. Assuming that he was somewhere in the group of travelers, they journeyed for a day. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends, but when they failed to find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him.

After three days they found him in the temple, where he was sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his intelligence and his answers. When they saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him: “Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been searching for you with great anxiety.” Jesus said to them, “Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they did not comprehend what he said to them.

Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and he was obedient to them. His mother pondered all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and in age and in grace with God and men.

From The Joy of Full Surrender by Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade

The power of the Most High will overshadow you, said the angel to Mary. This shadow, behind which is hidden the power of God for the purpose of bringing forth Jesus Christ in the soul, is the duty, the attraction, or the cross that is offered to us at each moment. These are, in truth, only shadows like those in nature that, like a veil, cover the objects of our senses and hide them from us. In the same way, in the moral and supernatural realm, the duties of each moment, like dark shadows, conceal the only thing that should hold our attention: the reality of God’s will in them. This was the way Mary perceived them. As these shadows spread themselves over her mind, far from deluding her, they only increased her faith in the One who is unchanging and unchangeable. Withdraw, Archangel! You are only a shadow. Your moment has passed. You have delivered your message and you are gone. Mary passes beyond you without stopping. The Holy Spirit, with whom she has been filled under the outward appearance of your words, will never leave her.

There are remarkably few extraordinary events in the exterior life of the holy Virgin. At least there are none recorded in Holy Scripture. Her life is pictured as outwardly very ordinary and simple. She did what others in a similar state of life might do, and suffered what they might suffer. She went to visit her cousin, Elizabeth. Other relatives do that, too. She took shelter in a stable as a result of her poverty. She returned to Nazareth, from which she had been driven by the persecution of Herod, and lived there with Jesus and Joseph, who supported themselves by the work of their hands.

Such was the daily bread of the holy family. But what a divine nourishment Mary and Joseph received from this daily bread for the strengthening of their faith! It was like a sacrament to make all their moments holy! What treasures of grace lay concealed in these moments under the guise of the most commonplace events. That which was visible might happen to anyone, but the invisible, when understood and discerned by faith, was no less than God himself working great things. Bread of angels! Heavenly manna! Pearl of great value! Sacrament of the present moment! You bring God under the poor and humble appearance of the manger, the hay, and the straw! But to whom do you give him? “He has filled the hungry with good things,” (Luke 1:53). God reveals himself to the humble in the lowliest things; but the proud, who attach importance only to outward appearances, cannot find him even in great things and are sent away empty.

Musical Selection 

I sing a maid of tender years To whom an angel came, And knelt, as to a mighty queen, And bowed his wings of flame: A nation's hope in her reply, This maid of matchless grace; For God's own son became her child, And she his resting place.
She watched him grow to manhood's strength To meet his destiny, And when the danger of his truth Brought him to Calvary, She stood by him all powerless To ease his dying pain, 'Til in the darkest hour of all, She held her son again.
And if the song had ended then, Our eyes would fill with tears, But ah! the song had just begun To echo down the years! Now lift your voices, hearts and souls, To sing with one accord To honor Mary, Mother of The Christ, the Risen Lord!
Loving God,
guardian of our homes,
when you entrusted your Son
to the care of Mary and Joseph,
you did not spare them the pains
that touch the life of every family.
Teach us to rely on your word,
that in our trials as in our joys
we may be clothed in gentleness and patience
and united in love.
Make us ever-thankful
for the blessings you give us
through Jesus Christ, your Word made flesh,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
in the splendour of eternal light,
God for ever and ever.  Amen. (Holy Family)