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The Queenship of Mary
I detect in your last note telltale signs that you have once again begun to read Westerns in your free time. You gave yourself away by using phrases like “yellow-bellied coward” and “lower than a snake’s belly”; whenever you resort to such vivid language I know that you have renewed your old pastime. Not that I deplore Westerns; both novels and movies of that sort can be entertaining, and the better ones can even be instructive. They often glorify great American values like ingenuity, dedication and hard work, responsibility, and justice. Nevertheless, even the best of them tend to suffer from a strain of exaggerated individualism, a very un-Catholic anti-value that sometimes emerges in American culture. The invincible gunfighter who always makes the right decision and can single-handedly save civilization from the onslaught of hoards of evil outlaws… Philosophically speaking, this is simply unchristian. Christ was a team player; God is a family – and he created us to need one another, to achieve our full potential only through mutual interdependence. Today’s feast is a potent reminder of this.
A week ago we celebrated Mary’s Assumption into heaven. (At least, I hope you celebrated it; it is a holy day of obligation, you know.) Today we commemorate her ongoing role in the Kingdom of Christ. Just as King Solomon gave his mother Bathsheba special honor in the court of the earthly Jerusalem, so Jesus has made his mother queen over the heavenly Jerusalem. There at his side she watches over all of us younger brothers and sisters of her beloved Son, anticipating our needs and interceding for us just as she did when the hapless newlyweds at Cana (cf. John 2) ran out of wine. We who struggle to advance the Kingdom on earth need the supernatural encouragement and inspiration that comes from knowing that we have a home in heaven to look forward to. And what would a home be without a mother?
So, my six-shooting nephew, don’t forget that you’re part of God’s family, and your heroism (being quick in virtue, not quick on the draw) needs the support of the whole Church, and can in turn be a support for the whole Church. Christians always fight together, never alone – so stay in touch with your Mother.