To die on the cross, Jesus needed his mother’s company
After forgiving the good thief from his cross, Jesus turns his head and his pain increases to the extreme. It is not the pain of his agonizing body. What hurts Jesus the most, is seeing his beloved mother looking at him like this.
Mary weeps in silence. She feels a sword pierce her heart.
She knows Jesus is special. She knows he was conceived in her womb by the power of the Holy Spirit. She saw him grow and smile, and turning serious when he prayed. She heard him saying many things she couldn’t understand but kept in her heart. She saw him doing good to everyone, hundreds of people falling in love with her son and following him.
Now she sees her son, naked, bruised, bleeding, hanging from the cross and about to die. She also hears the soldiers mocking him as he agonizes. She notices the blood of his forehead, pierced by the many thorns of the crown, dripping into his eyes. She tries to wipe them but can’t reach them.
The sorrow in her soul is deep. Yet, she stands tall and firm, strengthened by the loving valor of a good mother.
Mary was standing, tall and firm, giving courage to her son. The Gospel does not record any words said by Mary at the foot of the cross. She remained silent. The asphyxiating lump in her throat would not let her speak. Yet, as every mother, Mary was able to say it all without saying a word. Just looking at her child, she was able to instill in him valor and hope.
Jesus feels bad to see her mom suffering because of him. But he needs her by his side. Every man needs his mother. He needed a mother to become a man in her womb. He needed a mother to nourish him and look after him. He needed a mother to smile at him, to celebrate his first steps, to rejoice in his company.
Jesus needed Mary, who was his most important teacher in his life. She taught him to say to God “Thy will be done” when nothing made sense. This would become the constant prayer of Jesus. Jesus included this prayer he learned from Mary when he taught his disciples to pray the Our Father. It was this prayer he learned from his mother that gave him courage to make the ultimate leap of faith, overcoming the fear that had entrapped him for an instant Gethsemane: “Take this cup away from me, but not what I will but what you will. (Mark 14:36b)
Now, about to die, Jesus needs his mother close to him more than ever. He is the son of God, but he is also a true man. As such, he needs to feel the presence of his mother as he dies. Her presence makes him feel he is not dying alone. Her loving eyes make him realize he is not dying in vain.
Which man on earth would not give it all to have his mother at his bedside as he expires? Jesus, the perfect man, has this privilege. This way, Mary becomes co-redemptrix with Christ so that we believe in her son, and in believing, we may have eternal life.
Be passionate about our faith!
This is the English translation of the “Semillas de la Palabra” column that appeared in the March 2015 issue of NORTHWEST CATHOLIC.