Month of May, month of Mary

11 May 2023

Notre-Dame Libératrice_ Basilique Notre Dame de Montligeon
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Traditionally the month of May is dedicated to Mary. Mary is the Mother par excellence, whose motherly love nevers fails. Let us make use of the month of Mary to turn to her in confidence.

A mother’s love

“By means of maternal love, life at dawning presents you with a promise that it never keeps”. This sentence from the famous French novelist Romain Gary’s autobiographical novel La Promesse de l’aube (the Promise of Dawn) express both magnificent and tragic tribute to maternal love.

Magnificent because normally maternal love does not let down. It is made manifest in a mother’s weary yet moved smile at her infant’s birth; such love blossoms in her cuddles throughout childhood sorrows, gets challenged in teenage years, and matures in her offsprings’ adulthood. The unconditional love of a mother supports all and endures.

What is more, such a love represents a refuge for “One keeps coming back to one mother’s grave”, further wrote Romain Gary, “like an abandoned dog”. Refuge when undergoing trials, in times of estrangement, bereavement or illness. It is the ultimate refuge for the dying who call for their mothers in their final struggle.

Mary’s motherly love never fails

However, when failing the promise of maternal love becomes tragic. Who would be able to love one like one’s mother did? Our novelist was aware that never again he would encounter a woman capable of such love. Are we thus doomed to nostalgia?

No, we are not. The promise of Mary’s motherly love does not fail.

Why is that? Above all, because the Lord ultimately made manifest his compassion towards each of us as he turned his Mother over to us. Such a mother! Humble, frail, courageous yet radiant, and, moreover, a mother who underwent many trials even that of enduring her Son’s Passion. At the Cross, Mary became altogether our mother, our support, our refuge, and our solace. She is our mother and bestows on each of us a unique, tender, faithful, and patient love. She escorts us every single day of our lives, whether joys or ordeals, sorrows or misgivings. The Blessed Virgin Mary is neither inflexible nor aloof, neither invasive nor into fusion, but always at hand and able to heal one’s damaged relationship with one’s human mother.

The month of Mary

Much more, motherly love and Mary’s love reveal an even greater love, that of the Eternal Father who ardently loves us like a mother. “Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you” proclaims the Lord in Isaiah, thus revealing that He for ever remains constant, loving, tender and merciful.

During this month, may we acutely experience, through Mary, the very tenderness of God for each of us.

I wish you an exquisite month of Mary.

Rev. Fr. Don Paul Denizot, rector of the shrine of Montligeon

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