Catholic Mass Readings and Reflection June 08, 2024


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R/. My heart exults in the Lord, my Saviour.

V/. Alleluia

R/. Alleluia

V/. Blessed is the virgin Mary, who kept the word of God, pondering it in her heart

R/. Alleluia.

Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom. And when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, but supposing him to be in the group they went a day’s journey, but then they began to search for him among their relatives and acquaintances, and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, searching for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. And when his parents saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” And they did not understand the saying that he spoke to them. And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them. And his mother treasured up all these things in her heart.

1. The second Saturday after the Pentecost Sunday, we celebrate the immaculate heart of Mary. How beautiful it is that on Friday we celebrate the sacred heart of the Son and on the following day the immaculate heart of the Mother! It is not coincidental or merely sequential, but very meaningful and significant.

2. What is sacred reflects itself in what is immaculate. What is immaculate contains and embodies what is sacred. The sacred Son reflects the immaculate mother, and the immaculate mother embodies the sacred Son. Holiness and Immaculateness are integrated and inseparable. 

3. To be holy is to be pure. The more we conduct ourselves unstained and uncontaminated with an immaculate heart, the more we grow in holiness. The more we are holy, the more we grow pure and maliceless. To be holy and not to be immaculate is a contradiction.

4. In fact, sacredness and Immaculateness are not something accidental or additional to us. It is essential and integral to our very identity as God’s redeemed children. “To be holy and blameless” is God’s purpose for us, and destined us for such bliss (cf. Eph 1. 4). Our sanctification is God’s will (1 Thes 4. 3)). So to grow sacred and immaculate should be our priority and perennial pursuit.

5. Certainly, it is God’s gratuitous grace and not our merit. But this does not take away our role, our responsibility, our cooperation, and our effort. We should work hard to merit what we are graced with. This is what Mary did:

6. If her immaculate conception shows predominantly the singular grace and privilege, accorded to her by God, her immaculate heart shows preeminently her humble cooperation with that grace. She constantly preserved her heart and life from sin, and fostered sanctity, thanks to God’s grace.

7. Mary’s immaculate heart is not only a pointer to her personal holiness and purity but much more, also, a strong inspiration and pathway to be pure and immaculate ourselves. In our times, where hearts are getting so much polluted by sin and malice, where to have a heart comes to be taken as fragility and vulnerability, where hearts crooked, hard, and indifferent seem to be the order of the day, where hearts get entangled into many aberrations and deviation in the name of modernity, the immaculate heart of Mary is a consolation and remedy!

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