Call to Mary: A Radical and Joyful Witness


Mary is the mother for all who are redeemed by the passion and death of her beloved Son, the motherhood she received at the foot of the Cross (Jn 19:27) because she was not only a perfect mother but also perfect disciple. For Jesus, discipleship was indeed radically inclusive and radically equal. To be disciples like Mary, we must first listen and then do what he tells us to do. We should listen, hear, we can internalise, reflect and respond. Like Mary, we should speak and even give birth to words of truth and live a life of integrity. A fraction of Mary’s faith and faithfulness is all that is required to make Mary’s words our own: “for the Mighty One has done great things to me, and holy is his name”[1] (Lk 1:49).  This notion has been evidently enshrined in the Second Vatican Council Document which says, “All those who are called by God to the practice of the Evangelical Counsels and who faithfully respond to the call bind themselves to the Lord in a special way, following Christ, chaste and poor, as redeemed and sanctified men through the obedience even to the death of the Cross[2] (Phil 2:8). The radical way of living the Gospel on this earth is particularly profound and fruitful way of sharing Christ in imitation of the example of Mary.[3]

When Jesus explained to Peter about the reward a disciple would inherit, he included ‘persecution’ as well (Mk 10:30), which the disciples could not comprehend at all. Mary, on the other hand, understood what ‘persecution’ meant. She accepted the persecutions with great faith and fortitude. She was the perfect model of discipleship because she listened to Jesus, walked the way of the Cross and continued to live a strong faith till the end of her life.[4]

[1] A.  Gittins, “Mary, Disciple, and Model for Today,” Religious life Review, 54, no. 292, 2015, pp. 150-151.
[2] Vatican Council 11, Perfecatae Caritatis: Decree on the Renewal of Religious Life, ed., Austin Flannery, New York, Costello Publishing, 1996, no. 1.
[3] A.  Farncis, Radical Discipleship New York, Ignatius Press, 2015, p.  7.
[4] Gittins, “Mary, Disciple, and Model for Today,” p. 150.

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