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In The News


In The News

February 10 - Where There's Suffering, There's Mary
Article: Roman Catholic Church And The Last Days  

On Feb. 11, 1858, the Immaculate One appeared to a true anawim, a "blessed poor of the Lord" from the mountain town of Lourdes -- 14-year-old Bernadette Soubirous. Beside the River Gave in the grotto of Massabielle, "Aquero" or "that One" -- as Bernadette first referred to her in her local patois dialect -- appeared with rosary in hand to convey a global message of prayer and penance in reparation to God for sin and for the conversion of sinners.

After the instruction by the Lady to dig for water, which caused a stream from which a supernatural generosity of miracles would flow down to our own day, Bernadette received the great Marian self-revelation which would awe the faithful and bewilder the theologian: "I am the Immaculate Conception."

St. Maximilian Kolbe would later explain that
for the Mother of Jesus to say "I am the Immaculate Conception" conveys that Mary is mysteriously in her very essence full of grace and free from sin. She is a new creation, the perfect creation of the Father, so as to be the immaculate Mother of God, and also to be the faithful co-redeemer with her Son the Redeemer.

Karol Cardinal Wojtyla preached powerfully on this theme in a Dec. 8, 1973, homily on the Immaculate Conception. The future John Paul II reminded his congregation at Cracow: "Mary was the Co-redemptrix, because she was first the Immaculate Conception."

"Associated with the Sacrifice of Christ, Mary, Mater Dolorosa, who at the foot of the Cross suffers with her divine Son, is felt to be especially near by the Christian community, which gathers around its suffering members who bear the signs of the passion of the Lord. Mary suffers with those who are in affliction, with them she hopes, and she is their comfort, supporting them with her maternal help.

Not only does Our Lady bring to the sick a perfect human example of Christian redemptive suffering, but the Holy Father says further that "Mary suffers with those who are in affliction."

"This complete 'yes' of love is the Immaculate Conception of our dear Mother, Mary, who participated on Calvary as the co-redemptrix with the Savior. [...] Christ on the cross suffered all the pains that his Most Holy Mother suffered. And she in Christ suffers all our pains, she assumes them and knows how to commiserate with us. Our suffering is also her suffering."

The intercessory power of Our Lady of Lourdes is not limited to the geographical confines of a French hamlet in the foothills of the Pyrenees. Where there is suffering and sickness, there is the Mother, hovering in wait to mediate graces of consolation, healing, and courage, all in conformity to the perfect and generous will of the Heavenly Father. She waits only for our fiat in faith, to be freely welcomed into our homes, into our hearts, as she was by the disciple who Jesus loved (John 19:27), to bring to each one of us extraordinary healing graces of the Crucified Christ.

Whatever our present ailment or cross may be, Our Lady of Lourdes is the universal Mediatrix of healing and persevering grace, universally for all humanity, and personally for you and for me.

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