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Archive for the ‘Mother’s Day’ Category

Personally, I’ve never felt a desire to give birth to children (although I’ve always said that if I’d marry, I wouldn’t deny my husband the joy of biological children.) However, since the 2nd grade, when I learned what adoption was, I had felt a strong desire to adopt children in the event that I would marry someday. Eleven years ago I married a wonderful man, but motherhood is looking less and less likely a possibility as time moves on. Recently I came across an article on Facebook titled “Spiritual Motherhood“. Perhaps I should take Dr. Alice von Hildebrand’s advice:

“From now on your daily prayer should be, “God, send me spiritual children and I will never turn any one of them down. The more the better.” Simple as that. Pray for the gift of spiritual children. It might very well be that in your beautiful desire to be a biological mother you have overlooked cases where you could have become a spiritual mother….

You are called to motherhood right now. Not next week, not next month. I’m absolutely convinced that God has placed people in your path and called you to motherhood. Your task is to love those that are weak, unhappy, helpless, and unloved.”

I’m posting this ahead of Mother’s Day for all the women out there who, for whatever reason, have not been blessed with biological or adopted children. Sometimes a sadness and depression can set in, a mourning if you will, when this happens. But, perhaps God has a different sort of motherhood in mind for you.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the biological, adoptive, and spiritual mothers!

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The child … makes the wife a mother. Man more commonly cooperates with nature, but a woman cooperates with God; she is the bearer of the gift of God to man. The word of woman is “Fiat”, submission, surrender, cooperation with life. A woman’s unhappiest moment is when she is unable to give; there is hell within when she refuses to give. Bearer of the cosmic plentitude, she fulfills her mission when she brings a child into the world. Looking down at that babe, a new paradox is revealed: it is the only time self can be loved without selfishness. A mother now loves a non-self in herself as her body becomes the ciborium of the new life, and her arms become its bearer as she passes on culture to ages yet unborn.

I’m currently reading the book Life is Worth Living, by Venerable Fulton J. Sheen. It includes the transcripts from 44 episodes of his television show of the same name. This particular quote was taken from an episode entitled “Children: Burdens or Joys”. I thought it quite appropriate to share this quote with you at this time, Mother’s Day being Sunday.

I think that this quote not only speaks to women who have given birth, but also to women who, for whatever reason, cannot: “a woman’s unhappiest moment is when she is unable to give.” I wonder about some women’s consciences, if there is truth to the statement “there is hell within when she refuses to give.”

Some reading this will be put off by the phrase “she fulfills her mission when she brings a child into this world.” But, in context, there’s no disputing the fact that God made Woman to bear children. This is what Bishop Sheen is alluding to.

I can empathize with the “unhappiest moment”. I can ponder the “hell within”. I was struck with awe, however, by the statement: “A mother now loves a non-self in herself as her body becomes the ciborium of the new life, and her arms become its bearer as she passes on culture to ages yet unborn”.

Slowly re-read that sentence. “…her body becomes the ciborium of the new life….” Just think what our society, what our human race, could become if each and every person took this phrase to heart and treated the gifts from God with the respect and care that they deserve.

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Full citation for the quote above: Sheen, Fulton J., Life is Worth Living: First and Second Series, Ignatius Press, original copyright 1953 and 1954, p. 173.

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Yes, I know that it’s going to be Father’s Day this Sunday but recently I was trying to catch up on some reading and came across an article in the Catholic Times, our diocesan newspaper. The article, entitled “Dominicans bless gift of ‘peace’,” talks about the Adrian Dominican Sisters marking Mother’s Day by installing a Peace Pole on the grounds of their retreat and conference center. It said in the article that this ceremony was reconnecting Mother’s Day to its original meaning. This had me intrigued. I had assumed that the day was simply meant to thank mothers for all that they do.

Later in the article it said that originally Mother’s Day, proposed by Julia Ward Howe, was “an event to focus on striving towards world peace in response to the death and destruction wrought by the U.S. Civil War.” Howe wrote a Mother’s Day Proclamation calling all “women who have hearts” to come together to plan ways to put an end to war. “Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy, and patience. We women of one country will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.”

Somehow over the years this original meaning of Mother’s Day has been lost.

Now we also “allow our [daughters] to be trained to injure theirs.”

Perhaps now, more than ever, as war still rages on, we must revisit this proclamation. But, perhaps this should not only be a Mother’s Day Proclamation. This should also be a Father’s Day Proclamation and a proclamation that we take into our hearts the rest of the days of the year also, teaching (and relearning for ourselves) charity, mercy, and patience on our way to becoming “too tender of those of another country.”

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The clouds roll in,
the rain begins,
and the wind blows chill.
Sigh…

One robin hops
and watches
and hopes.

Not too far
three robins wait
and watch
and hope.

Soon mom returns,
her young she feeds.

Four robins content
and nature too
it seems.

The rain stops,
the clouds depart,
and the wind blows warm.
Sigh…

Happy Mother’s Day!

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