“Most blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me, that the Mother of my Lord should come to me?”
– Luke 1:42-48
The Gospel today focuses on Mary and her gracious visit to Elizabeth. This reminds me of the importance of Mary, the Blessed Mother, in my life. My grandmother, mother and dad all had a special devotion to Mary. Subsequently, when I entered religious life 66 years ago, I took the name of Brother de Montfort, the author of “True Devotion to the Blessed Mother.”
Through the years, my sisters, nieces, and wives of my nephews have all inspired me in so many ways. And in my active years of ministry, women colleagues and secretaries became dear friends. When I was on the faculty at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley and again while I was on the staff at Southdown in Canada, I served as Co-Director of programs with women. These relationships were personally transformative for me. In both experiences we developed a relationship of mutuality and equality. This model of leadership became an example of genuine collaboration between a man and a woman. One participant in the Berkeley program remarked, “Many are writing about this model of leadership, but the two of you are actually doing it.”
As we approach the birth of Jesus, let us reflect on Mary and Joseph as they together overcame great obstacles to bring Jesus into the world.
Gracious God, be with us as we reflect on our personal devotion to the Blessed Mother, and may that devotion influence us as we continue to create equal and mutual ministerial relationships between men and women.
Brother Cornelius Hubbuch
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