Mary, the new Eve
Matthew 1:1-16,18-23Happy Birthday, Mama Mary!
Celebrating birthdays are always magical moments for us. When we were children we couldn't do away with balloons, birthday hats and cakes, and gifts. It's a time of new beginnings us who go to church to thank the Lord for granting another year in our lives. When our birthday comes, it's a time to renew ourselves to become better persons.
Celebrating Mary's birthday is a time of new beginnings in the Church and in our faith. When Mary was conceived, it signaled the time of renewal for humanity and the call to be "new creation in Christ."
As St. Paul said in Rom 5: 17, "For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!"
Church tradition tells us that Mary is the new Eve, the recipient of the new humanity offered by Jesus Christ. She also offers to us her children the capacity to be renewed and be the children of God as he wills us to be.
First, she was unconditionally and unreservedly obedient to God, "I am the maidservant of the Lord. Let it be done to me as you say." She and her son Jesus shattered the age-old disobedience of Adam and Eve and the rest of humankind. Obedience is the key to being a renewed self, the capacity to be open to God and do his will on earth till in heaven.
Second, her life reflected an image of a servant, a steward, a disciple, a bride of the Lord. As we live out our Christian lives, there is no other way life except to offer time, talent, and treasure for God to do his will.
Third, Mary's birthday ushers in the image of the renewed Church, alive, giving, sharing, praying, proclaiming, and living out Christ's teachings. Mary brings us effectively to her son Jesus, making us one body in Christ.
Let Mary's birthday usher newness of life and commitment to live Christian lives.