“Woman, behold, your son... Behold, your mother.” (John 19:26–27)

What is a mother? Biologically, she is a human who went through the process of pregnancy, childbirth, recovery and child-rearing. Her body undergoes physical and physiological changes which she has to cope with, while also orienting her life around this new being. But mothers are not limited by biological definition. One could also say that a mother is a person who serves as comfort, light and sanctuary for those she has taken under her care. And you know the irony of it? As a mom grows ever attached to her child, the child being raised becomes ever independent of the mother. That is, the mother serves as a counsel, as a guiding light to develop the child's conscience, as a home to fly to in times of trouble, until such time that he/she can stand on his/her own feet. But even then, as adults, these persons' identity as the mother's children are never truly erased.

No matter how well a parent prepares for retirement, there comes a time when old age and sickness happens upon a mother, when her back can no longer strain to work and provide, when she would be reliant upon other people for daily needs. It is then that a child is called to honor the responsibility to care for his/her mother. Once, the baby depended upon the mother for sustenance and care; now their roles are reversed. Of course, there is an option to ask for help when caring for the aging, ailing parent. But it should be known that for a mother who once spent countless sleepless nights to make sure her child got enough rest and did not go hungry, there is a comfort, and relief that can only be drawn from the presence, the smile, laughter and touch, of her now-grown child. One of the greatest happiness of a child and mother is to be together always. Though phases of life may cause them to go separate ways, there is a deep joy that courses through them at being together particularly before death, just as what transpired between Jesus and Mary at the foot of the cross.

Perhaps this is what Jesus is implying when He said, "Woman, behold your son. Son, behold your mother" in John 10: 26-27. Mary is entrusted to the beloved disciple, while the beloved disciple is in turn entrusted to Mary. In the same way, we are also entrusted to Mary, who became our mother in faith. A friend was quoted to have said, "A man/boy has two women in his mind when he goes to sleep: one is his crush/girlfriend/wife, and the other is his mother." Indeed, Jesus, knew very well that with our human imperfections, we would need a 'mother in faith' to run to, and to help guide us back to Him. Nowadays when the role of motherhood is oftentimes undermined by society, being seen as something lesser than a profession, this is a good time to remember that Jesus, in His dying moments, wished to acknowledge motherhood as an important vocation, something to be honored, nurtured, and respected.

Beloveds, as members of the church, it is our task and challenge to love and care for our mother(s) and children, and to nurture our relationships within our Christian family, neighbours and even our enemies. But the question is, how well have we answered this calling? How is our relationship with each member of our family, and with our Lord Jesus?


Sharer: Mrs. Lycelle Español - Tuburan


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