Before presenting its monthly overview of Vincentian Marian Youth activities around the world the October Bulletin begins with a reflection on “Mary – I am peace in the storm”.
During recent months we have seen and listened to news about many conflicts on our planet, and each party involved has found justification for their attack. I ask myself: Do we not experience internal conflicts which we then externalize? Why do we seek to justify our conflicts by attacking our neighbor?
Pope Francis has stated that true peace originates in the heart of the human person. Where, then, is peace found within us? Each day it is easy to justify our mistakes and yet so difficult to accept them. As a result we live in the midst of an on-going internal war in which we engage in battle with our personal concerns and conflicts at the same time that we have been given a mission to be happy and to communicate that same happiness and joy to our brothers and sisters. How then do we achieve that peace? Throughout history many people have stood before us and shown us how to do this all of them have followed in the footsteps of the Master, Jesus and his mother, Mary, that simple joyful dedicated woman. Mary was filled with faith and one day in Nazareth she stated: I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word (Luke 1:38). Mary teaches us to trust in God, to believe in her promises and to have faith. She gives us an example of docility to the Word of God and also invites us to act on God’s word: Do whatever he tells you (John 2:5). With those words Mary is asking us to trust her when we are afraid because in Mary we find a courageous woman. Indeed, during our moments of doubt we have only to look into her eyes to discover the truth that she wishes to communicate to us.
To have faith and to believe in a merciful God, to be courageous and to live the truth of Mary’s Son, Jesus Christ, these are the keys to our peace and happiness. Saint John tells us that God and his Son have so loved us that when Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold your son.” Then he said to the disciple. “Behold your mother” (John 19:26-27). It was at that moment that the mother of Jesus became the mother of humankind. The sorrowful mother at the foot of the cross speaks to us and tells us that only through faith will we find the strength to confront the various pains and suffering that we will encounter as we walk through life.
Like Mary, let us continue to strengthen our faith so that through the witness of our life we might communicate joy and happiness to those who can find no reason to be happy.
Read the full Bulletin BI Oct2013 ENG