5th Sunday of Easter—Year B

This Sunday our country celebrates our mothers—and rightly so.  For the care and love which our mothers have given us cannot be measured or given a price.  Of course, our earthly parents are not perfect. Sometimes they’re quite far from perfect.  But any love we’ve known from them is a likeness of the love God has for us. A religious icon is made of mere wood and paint, but it can be a window to heavenly realities. In the same way, we can see through our parents’ love a glimpse to God himself.

Most of us have more memories about our mothers than we could possibly count, but today I would like to go with you back to a time and place about which you have no clear memories—to the time in your mother’s womb. Just as the Hebrews were 40 years in the desert; just as Jesus prepared 40 days in the wilderness; and just as Christ rested 40 hours until his resurrection from the tomb; so you remained 40 weeks, more or less, within your mother’s womb, being prepared for a new life.

Through your mother’s vine you grew into the mature fruit of her womb. You were nourished and grew within her. You were never far from her heart or mind. You existed in within her, connected to her at the center of your being.      She fed you with her very self. She provided for all your needs. Apart from her, you could do nothing. You remained in her and found rest in her.

At the early stages of our life in the womb, our minds did not comprehend very much, but what if you could have understood everything that your mom was doing for you at the time? Certainly you would have directed your thoughts to her often.  And certainly, from time to time, you would have turned to her with the eyes of your heart to bask in her love for you.

And imagine further what if you could have talked with your mom from the womb? Would you not have taken the opportunity to speak with her every day? Would you not have thanked her daily out of a deep gratitude? Would you not have let her know each day how much you love her? Whoever would refuse or neglect to do so would continue to live, at least functionally or biologically, but the person would not be fully alive without this relationship .

As you and your mother would continue to talk as the days and months of pregnancy passed, she would eventually present you with a most-frightening prospect: She might say, “My child, soon, in a little while, you are going to begin an new stage of life. You will be departing from the life you know, and then you’ll experience a world of people and things you have never known before.” But you would say, “I’m scared, I don’t want to go, not now, not ever!” But she would say, “I realize this concept is scary for you, but trust me when I say that it is better that you go. In fact, someday soon you’ll look back and think it a silly thought to be again as you are now. This transition is going to hurt a little bit… trust me, I know… but when the appointed time comes, I’ll be right here with you. Do not be afraid.”

This morning we reflect on this time in the womb because our life in our mothers is like our life in Christ. As it was with our mothers, so it is, in this life, with Christ. You are nourished and grow within Him. You are never far from His heart or mind. You exist in within Him, connected to Him at the center of your being. He feeds you with His very self. He provides for all your needs. Apart from Him, you can do nothing. You remain in Him and find rest in Him.

Knowing and believing this, shouldn’t we direct our thoughts to Him often? Shouldn’t we, from time to time, turn to Him with the eyes of our hearts to bask in His love for us.

We have the ability to talk with Jesus Christ. Who would not take the opportunity to speak with Him every day? Who would not thank Him daily out of deepest gratitude? And who would not let Him know each day how much we love Him? Whoever would refuse or neglect to talk with Him, that is to pray, would continue to live, at least functionally or biologically, but the person would not be fully alive without this relationship with Jesus Christ. We need to pray every day if we want to remain in Him and to bear much fruit.

None of us want to die and that’s perfectly natural. But Jesus says to us, “Soon, in a little while, you are going to begin a new stage of life. You will be departing from the life you know, and then you’ll experience a world of people and things you have never known before. I realize this concept is scary for you, but trust me when I say that it is better that you go. In fact, someday soon you’ll look back and think it a silly thought to be as you are now again. This transition is going to hurt a little bit… trust me, I know… but when the appointed time comes, I’ll be right there with you. Be not afraid.”

Today, let us thank God for the gift of our mothers and the gift of Jesus Christ.  God bless our mothers, and praised be Jesus Christ.

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One Response to “5th Sunday of Easter—Year B”

  1. Katie Reigel Says:

    I love this homily it is a beautiful one!!! It is very appropriate for Mother’s Day. I like how you linked being in our mother’s womb to our life in Christ.

    Happy Mother’s day to all our Mothers

    Especially to our Mother Mary!!!

    We love you Mary!!!

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