Sunday, 14 August 2011

Ave Maria

I did write a post nearly 4 years ago when I was a wide eyed innocent in the ways of the bloggerdom, about my difficult realtionship with Our Lady. Difficult on my part, not hers. I had this feeling of inadequacy as a Catholic because my hyperdulia was never hyper enough, or atleast never as hyper as most other Catholics I knew.

Since then, I've just decided to let go, pray and stop trying to intellectualise it all. As a way of celebrating the Assumption, my next few posts will be Marian in flavour.


There is a church many many miles from where I am now dedicated to the Immaculate Conception. At the rear of the sanctuary is some stained glass featuring, among other things, the Immaculata herself. Due to the ridiculously high (in stature not orthodoxy) sanctuary, a gift of the "modern liturgical reforms", this window is now extremely visible during Mass. What is disconcerting is that Our Lady has no face. I don't know whether the glass depicting her face fell out and was never replaced or whether the details simply wore away. It is a trifle disconcerting, but it has taken on a great significance to me, it has become soemthing of a genuine icon for me.

Then again, no artist can truly depict her beauty, though the more divinely inspired can produce great devotional pieces. Our Lady whose face I can't see, pray for us.

With this in mind, it came as no surprise to find that the first bit to wear off my brown scapula was the face of Our Lady, everything else is still clearly visibe. When I put on the scapula, Our Lady goes between my shoulders and Our Lord to my heart. Our Lady whose face I can't see, pray for us

Now there is an indelible set of images before me, of a mother helping her toddler take the first baby steps. A mother has two ways of doing this, she can either crouch before the child at a distance with arms open, welcoming the child into her arms or she can stand behind the child reassuring her that she won't fall as she totters forwards, there is a sense of a stabilising arm there if it is needed. Many will relate to the first image, I think it is particularly pertinent to priests as their path is so treacherous and their steps so shaky. I relate to the second. There is a motherly "go on keep trying" from behind me, we are facing the same way, that is why I can't see her, she knows what I'm doing even if I don't. Our Lady whose face I can't see, pray for us


Anonymous said...

Seems to me that whether you realise it or not, your hyperdulia is on the right road! What more do you want? You want to see Her smiling at you? The whole world could not contain Her smile!

Rita said...

Thank you, Father!