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.”