Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows – 15 September 2009

Most if not all of us have our favourite image of Our Lady. I have mine as well, and it is the icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour. About four years ago, through one of Fr Ignatius Huan’s homilies or lessons, I was introduced and have since added another favourite image of Our Lady, the image of Mary standing at the foot of the Cross.

When confronted by the imminent death of her son Jesus and the horrific sufferings that Jesus was enduring, Mary herself was also at the foot of the Cross undergoing her own passion. Yet in John’s Gospel, Mary was not depicted as weeping her eyes out, beating her chest as the women of Jerusalem did nor kneeling down in a state of distraught. Instead Mary was seen as standing at the foot of the Cross, a picture of trust and confidence in the Divine plan of God the Father and the promises of Her Son Jesus.

Exactly one year ago this day, I was about to start on my Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at Mount Alvernia Hospital, and there was quite a fair bit of uncertainties and even apprehensiveness, because I do not know what is going to happen or will happen at CPE. Some said that it was an irony to start my CPE on Our Lady of Sorrows, but to me, it was providential and it pointed out the attitude I am invited to have. In that quiet morning that day, as I prepared for Eucharistic Celebration in Holy Spirit’s chapel, all I did was to surrender and entrust in faith and obedience to God the Father, and I said to Our Lady, “Mother, I do not know what is going to happen, but Mother, please walk with me and stand with me.”

There are many things we do not understand, and like Mary we are invited to ponder on the things we do not comprehend in our hearts, and we are all invited to be like Mary, to be open, to be faithful, to be trusting, to stand upright despite all the impossibilities going on around us, to let go of our dreams and dream God’s dreams for us.

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