The readings for the Feast of Corpus Christi connect the Eucharist to service. This is no accident—there is an absolute connection between what we receive and what we live.
God is the original family. The Trinity: Father, Son and Spirit are a community of love from and through whom all creation flows. Today’s readings break open the relationship that God offers us and sustains in us.
When I found out that there was a trilogy of graphic novels, The Search, that told the story of Zuko’s Mom from Avatar: The Last Airbender, I was desperate for it. The relationship between Zuko and Ursa appeared to be very tender and very formative of Zuko’s young life. I was intrigued by her character and was dying to know what happened to her.
This is a reprint of a blog I did two years ago for St. Aloysius Parish.
Just in time for Mother’s Day, a young woman who works for an abortion clinic has released a video of her own abortion procedure to show “a positive abortion experience” for women who are considering one. Her intent is to, “share my story and inspire other women to stop the guilt.” (See the full article from News 12 NJ here). While (even though I am an Italian, Catholic mother) I do not support people living their lives bound by guilt, I do believe that guilt is a very useful tool for knowing when you’ve done something wrong—not a sensation to be avoided so that you don’t have to acknowledge your sin. The video shows the young woman having an abortion with no sensibility of the magnitude of her action. She does not even make reference to the fact that she has just coldly and deliberately ended a life. She says that she feels, “in awe of the fact that she can make a baby.” How strange that she can separate the fact that she “made a baby” but admittedly has no remorse or sadness about killing the child.
The true horror in this is the complete lack of value our society places on human life—particularly helpless, defenseless life. It is deeply offensive on a natural level—our most basic biological instinct is to protect our young. It is devastating to those who would have children but are unable. It offends the attachment that every woman who has carried a child and loved that child before it was ever born experiences. To nurture life, to elevate the dignity of others, to encourage and protect—this is what we are made for. But, this woman is on a campaign to assist women in deviating from their nature and forgetting who they are and who they are meant to be. (The Catholic Church has a program to help women who have terminated a pregnancy to know God’s forgiveness and to seek wholeness again called Project Rachel.)
In direct contrast to this, a group decided to create a “fake job” and held actual interview for it. The requirements were things like: 24-7 work hours, no vacations, no holidays, no sleep, etc. The job was Motherhood. When it was revealed to the applicants their rouse, they expressed a deep appreciation for their mothers. It shed light on the sacrifice that mothers make every day, but with such tenderness and dignity. It’s not guilt based—because it shouldn’t be—but it expresses the deep committed love that mothers have for their children…no matter what. Even when they are teenagers (Thanks for letting me live, Mom).
Motherhood is a terrible, wonderful, confusing, delightful, exhausting, joyful vocation. It is not for the faint of heart, but it strengthens hearts. It’s not to be taken lightly or for granted. It is one of the most perfect expressions of how God loves us that there is. To all mothers, and all who would be; God has given us a great gift—the gift of valuing human life like God does—unconditional, unending love. Let us be a force in the world to share that gift and to lovingly help others to share it, too.