Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

There’s Something About Mary

I think about Mary often this time of year. More than usual, which is a lot.

Mary loves desperate people–the ones who have already tried Jesus and, for whatever reason, didn’t get results.

That’s how my mom explained it when she told me that she was going to Mary with my depression. For a year I called her (daily) in tears, begging her to bring out all her spiritual ammunition–novenas, rosaries, fasting, Mass–to help me fight the beast. She got impatient with the saints and with the Sacred Heart, so she went to the mother of God.

“Mary has never let me down,” she explained.

I believed her because I’ve seen proof of Mary’s miracles: The rows of crutches hanging over the magnificent grotto at Lourdes, France, where I made a pilgrimage when I was a college student living abroad. And the original cloak (with the image of a Madonna) presented to Juan Diego in 1531 hanging in the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City, where I stopped two years after Lourdes en route to a vacation in Acapulco.


Now, as a mother myself, I understand why so many people go to Jesus’ mother with their intentions. Moms don’t waste time. They get things done. And they have lots of compassion.

It’s like that great St. Peter joke:

Jesus is all upset when he sees a bunch of crooks, liars, and thieves in heaven.

“I gave you this job for a reason,” Jesus reprimands St. Peter, who has been diligently guarding the pearly gates, directing those with a bad score card toward the dude with the red horns. “What are you doing letting these people in?”

“It’s not my fault!” St. Peter responds. “As soon as I get rid of them, they go around back and your mom lets them in.”

  • Kevin Keough

    I’ve had similar experiences. Perhaps it was the influence of John Paul II. Since my twenties (46 now) I have unexpectedly found myself turning to Mary. During my darkest moments I head straight to Mary. I’ve had a few very powerful experiences as I wrote letters to her. Somehow I believe she is the keeper of compassion…….even more than the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. It’s strange butI find myself thinking the ‘Men’ are busy and if they could spare a moment, the only response I would get would be the one Jesus got Holy Thursday in the Garden, as his friends slept, as he pleaded for mercy. ” Sorry, but you gotta do what you gotta do”. That scene is so etched in my mind that only in the past year did it ever cross my mind that it was ‘acceptable’ to pray for relief or respite or a short break from some agonizing experience. I’m still not sure of the answer. With Mary, I sense she will ‘hear me’ even if there isn’t a shortcut. Interestingly, each time I suggest to a patient turning to Mary or developing a relationship with her, there is a very positive result. I don’t know where it comes from though. My mother has had anextraordinary influence on my life. However, she isn’t especially compassionate. In fact, I associate her with “Sorry, you gotta do what you gotta do… complaints. Nobody ever said life would be easy. Keep moving….one breath at a time….no time for compassion”. Holy Mother of God-please keep me in your prayers. Therese, you are doing wonderful work. I am getting so much from your writing.

  • http://HASH(0xcf17700) sara love

    It is only those who have walked through the valley of darkness and sought relief in the great spirit of the creator and trusted the wisdom of the ages who can know mercy and compassion are more grace giving than any admonition. We are all holy and we need only find the spirit of the trinity within. Compassion and mercy gie each of us that opportunity to be lifted up and let the best part thrive. It is all part of a scale, it just changes shape, this divine energy. You may know more about compassion and grace than you know–you may have granted it to others too, unwittingly, but generously.

  • http://HASH(0xcf168a8) Katie Fry

    In addendum to the St. Peter Joke – Jesus says -“Just wait til my Father gets home!” 8->

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