Our statue of Mary at St Chrysostom’s is a beautiful focus for prayer. After Sunday Mass we have a particular focus of prayer as we turn to the statue and remember Mary’s ‘Yes’ as we sing the Angelus. Many people light candles at the statue, so many at times that we wonder whether a third candle stand is needed!
At this time we celebrate our Church’s dedication,we are dedicating our statue to Mary, Mother of Welcome and Hope. Here Fr Chris explains why ‘Mother of Hope’
Mother of Hope has recently been added to the long list of the beautiful names used when speaking of our Lady – and is one which I feel resonates with us at St Chrysostom’s so much more than such quaint ones as “Tower of Ivory” or “House of Gold”.
Mary risked everything that she had when she said Yes to God’s angel and became the mother of Jesus. We can often overlook that she risked reputation, status, even her life by consenting to this – and becoming an unmarried mother. A young, pregnant, peasant woman – so many things to alienate her from the power structure of her day – says Yes to God, and has Hope.
She had hope – not in some magic, not in a fanciful day dream, but in the faithfulness and love of God.
God is faithful to us even when we turn our backs on him. We see this throughout the Old Testament when time and again God shows himself as the God who intervenes – the great “I am”. We might well go “off track” and forget God, but he never goes “off track” with us.
Mary was convinced that despite many things pointing differently she was doing something great and special for God. She had a hard time – knowing fear, knowing despair and even having to witness her son dying on a cross.
That conviction, that HOPE, was turned into reality when she also witnesses her son’s triumph on Easter Day, and when she is assumed at the point of death into heaven.
We have those among us who like Mary are on the margins of society because of immigration status, or addiction, crime, unemployment – and her Hope can be realised in their lives. We have folk who like Mary are worried about the future, about their children’s future and about Covid19 and other diseases – and Mary’s Hope can be shared with them. We have parents who like Mary see their children suffering and even dying – and Mary can give Hope to them.
Mary can give Hope to all of us – Mary, Mother of Hope, Pray for us.