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Grace: To experience hope like Mother Mary amidst fear and anxiety.

After the storm, there is a calm. Similarly, after Good Friday, there is Holy Saturday, a day of great silence. It is the day that the disciples of Jesus stood in shock, fear, mourning and utter desolation as their Lifeline was taken away. Everything is over with Good Friday; that was their feeling. The onslaught of COVID 19 has overwhelmed the humanity leading to lockdown world around. There is silence everywhere: it is a silence of fear, perplexity, mourning, solidarity, and hope.

On Holy Saturday we turn our eyes to Mother Mary who accompanied Jesus from the womb to the tomb. What would be her sentiments today? Like any mother, Mary might have had the pain of the death of her Son and she might have cried. Pope Francis referring to the weeping of Jesus at the death of Lazarus says, “I think of so many people crying: isolated people in quarantine, lonely elderly people, hospitalized people, people in therapy, parents who see that since there is no salary they will not be able to feed their children” (Pope Francis). Today along with Mary, we too cry in silence as we accompany the victims of COVID 19.

Holy Saturday is also a day of hope. Mother Mary is the binding presence that provides continuity between the death of Jesus and the resurrection. From the day she said ‘yes’ to God, she went through different kinds of suffering, loneliness, rejections, and confusion which culminated at the loss of her own son. But she remained steadfast. In Mother Mary who pondered and treasured in her heart all that happened in her life we have a perfect example of finding a way through in life’s darkest moments. “The experience of a hidden God cannot always be avoided, but even in the depths of darkness when God seems concealed, the transforming light of God is able to shine. God labours intensely in this hiddenness” (General Congregation 35:2.7).Let us walk with Mother Mary in hope and draw inspiration from her so as to see a silver lining among the dark clouds.

Pause and Reflect

  • Amidst the COVID 19 perplexity who is taking control of me: fear or hope?
  • Holy Saturday, a day of hope, is not a one-day affair for many of us. For some this hope (Holy Saturday) may go on for years when they are faced with tragedies one after another. As I sit beside Mother Mary, let me share my experience of ‘Holy Saturdays’, “days of hope and waiting” in my life.
  • Let me continue to accompany the victims of corona pandemic through my prayers on this day of hope.

Passages for Prayer and Reflection
Mother Mary is pondering in her heart all that she has witnessed. Now perhaps she understands more than ever, the full meaning of all those sayings that she pondered over earlier. Pray and reflect over on some of the following passages.

Lk 2:35: A sword will pierce your own soul too.
Lk 2:49: Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?
Lk 8:21: My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.
Lk 11:27-28: Blessed is the womb that bore you…

Prayer: Lord, as I accompany your Mother in silence and hope, I place before you the fear, anxiety, tears of the entire humanity. Be close to us. May we perceive your presence as hope as we continue to combat COVID 19.

Mantra: Walk with me O, My Lord.

Deepak Edattu SJ
Wayanad, Kerala