The United Church of Christ’s slogan is that G-d is still speaking; G0d’s word is not finite but is something that continues to evolve. Every time we reread a particular passage from the Bible, we are able to gain new meaning and insight. I believe that this concept also applies to Mary; with each study of her apparitions, scripture passages that mention her, and of church teachings, one is able to gain a new perspective on the Jewish handmaiden whose yes led to a spiritual revolution. Mary, like all people, is a mosaic made of many pieces; a single piece does not embody her completely but is only a fragment of a much larger picture.
Over the last few months of reflecting on “there’s something about Mary,” I have been able to ponder new pieces of the Marian mosaic that I had not considered before that stemmed from re-readinging scriptures and sacred stories, personal reflections, and conversations with friends. These insights are reminders that G-d is still speaking—there is always something new to learn about God’s divine mystery whether it is about Mary or ourselves.
Some new pieces of the mosaic for me are:
- In the Bible we see a reversal of Luis de Monfort’s motto of “to Jesus through Mary” that becomes “to Mary through Jesus.” By looking at Jesus we see glimpses of Mary.
- Rereading the Gospel accounts, I realize that Jesus’ humanity came entirely from her; his eyes, color of hair, skin complexion, height, allergies—it all came from her genetic material. The stories he shared are reflections of the home-life she taught him.
- Mary’s relationship with G-d is a reflection of the Star of David. Mary lowers herself (point downward) so that God is exulted (point upward).
- She was a woman of firsts – she was the first to say making her the first Apostle, the first to see him walk, who motherly nudged his first miracle, she was the first charismatic encounter by visiting Elizabeth, and as Ignatius of Loyola teaches the first to know about the Resurrection.
Mary is a mother, wife, daughter, party planner, widow, cook, worker, teacher; she is a mosaic of images and meaning. With each new reading of a text we learn something about this feisty woman who lived a life of faithful and loving service to God. With each new visit in my personal devotion and academic study I discover a new piece of the mosaic that makes up the image of Mary. She is a reminder that we too are mosaics and that G-d continues to work through and in us!