Mary said, “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior.”
Our lady of Guadalupe is venerated as the Patroness of the Americas. Why? Is it simply because she appeared in Mexico? Or is it because America is in need of some very special graces?
“O God…grant that all who invoke the Blessed Virgin of Guadalupe may seek with ever more lively faith the progress of peoples in the ways of justice and peace.” (Collect)
Justice and peace. Justice is a virtue that is in short supply in the Americas, especially in Latin and South America where corruption runs rampant. But how does the virtue of justice fair in the United States? Are we satisfied with the rule of law; with majority rule? Do we really believe that the majority rule ensures that morality rules?
When in doubt, do I give the Lord the benefit of the doubt or do I look for consensus?
“For the first time ever, the Health and Human Services secretary publicly overruled the Food and Drug Administration, refusing Wednesday to allow emergency contraceptives to be sold over the counter, including young teenagers. The contraceptive pull, called Plan B One-Step, has been available without a prescription to women 17 and older, but those 16 and younger have needed a prescription – and they will because of the decision by the health secretary, Kathleen Sebelius.” (New York Times)
Of course the reaction was mixed. There were expressions of disgust and horror on the part of liberals, and surprise and shock on the part of conservatives. What is striking is that Kathleen Sebelius, a Catholic, for unknown reasons (most likely political reasons), decided to do the right thing for the first time, and do it without the approval of the majority opinion. Thank God for election years!
The same can be said of Tim Tebow, the Evangelical Christian and Denver Broncos quarterback, who routinely gives thanks to God, not for winning (which he seems to do a lot of) but for living and giving thanks to God for his talents. He has surprised all the so-called experts that thought he would be a loser and is defying the NFL commissioner and commission for their “no-no” to public manifestations of personal faith. But is freedom to worship not protected by our Constitution? Can I not pray in public? Giving thanks to God before eating in a restaurant or asking for his protection before taking off for a flight? Of course it is, regardless of the majority of the fans in the stadium, on my flight or in the cafeteria!
Do it! Show the world who you believe in! Show the world who makes you tick!
Just like St. Juan Diego, following the Lord (or the Blessed Virgin Mary) may mean twists and turns, uphill battles, valleys filled with tears and stormy nights. But we know how this story ends: happily ever after!
Three Wise Men and one good thief knew it well too. Some may take the road filled with denials and demands while others simply say, “Remember me, Lord.”
That story too, had a happy ending!
Our Lady of Guadalupe! Pray for us!