Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Tuesday 8th December is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Masses at 8am, 10am, Noon, and 7.30pm on the Holy Day. The following reflection on Mary was written by Fr. Ronan Drury who was Professor of Homiletics in Maynooth for many years. He died in 2017 at the age of 93 and a book with a selection of his writings, homilies and reflections has been published. This is taken from that selection:

“Mary, One Who Waits. Mary waited; indeed her whole life was marked by waiting. Waiting nine months for the birth of her son, three days when he was lost as a teenager, waiting for his answer to the young married couple in Cana in need of help, waiting on the edge of the crowd for him to speak to her as he taught them and hearing him say, ‘the one who hears the Word of God and fulfils it is my mother, my sister and my brother.’ And then, standing at the cross as a sword pierced her soul waiting for him to die followed by the awful waiting throughout that day between his death and resurrection. Always she waited in some perplexity or anxiety and so Mary must be the patron of those who have to wait. Those who await news of their son or daughter, husband or wife, the result of a medical test or an exam or other tense moments in their lives. There is a story told of Christ asking St. Peter in heaven, ‘Why are some here who shouldn’t have arrived yet?’ to which Peter responds, ‘Well I don’t let them in the front gates of heaven, but they go around to the back and your Mother lets them in.’ And Jesus laughed. Mary is our back door and she always keeps it ajar. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary”