Immaculate Heart of MaryToday we celebrate the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  It follows the solemnity of her Son’s Sacred Heart because her heart is second only to His in its love for us.  He personally gave her to us to be our loving mother, just as she is His.

Her love for Him is second to none.  For love of Him, she shared in His sorrows and sufferings.  For love of Him, her heart was pierced with a sword.

Are we willing to have our hearts pierced so?  The Saints and Martyrs have been so willing.  Most of us “ordinary” Catholics have our moments too, when we lay ourselves open to suffering.  Though it may not seem like it at the time, these are usually our best moments, so closely do they bind us to our Lord and our mother.

At the same time, while Christ’s heart is wreathed with thorns, Mary’s heart is wreathed with blooming roses.  In Scripture, Mary is described as keeping things in her heart and pondering them: she does so as she adores her Son lying in the manger and again when she and St. Joseph find the child Jesus in the Temple after having searched for Him for days.  While her meditations are mentioned twice, they were no doubt a constant habit.  No wonder her heart blooms!

Are we willing to hold and ponder our Lord in our hearts as Mary did?  Do we often meditate upon Him and His life?  Do we spend time reading Scripture, praying the Rosary, adoring Him in the Blessed Sacrament?  The very name “rosary” means a garden or garland of roses.  Our hearts too can be adorned with roses that bloom with the life and love of our Lord.

Let us strive to make our hearts resemble Mary’s.