In her latest message at Medjugorje, on August 25, 2022, Mother Mary is reminding us of a very important thing in our lives: our personal peace leads to world peace.
She tells us: Dear children! God permits me to be with you and to lead you on the way of peace, so that through personal peace, you build peace in the world. I am with you and intercede for you before my Son Jesus, that He may give you a strong faith and hope in a better future, which I desire to build up with you. You be courageous and do not be afraid, because God is with you. Thank you for having responded to my call.
In this most beautiful message Mother Mary is confirming, once again, that She is the Queen of Peace. She says: God permits me to be with you and to lead you on the way of peace. Throughout the corpus of Medjugorje messages one encounters Queen of Peace quite often. In this message Mother Mary is telling us that she is the Queen of Peace because she leads us on the way to peace. But how? In another message, this time addressed to the Mirjana Dragicevic-Soldo in the annual apparition of March 18, 2019, Our Lady said:
My children, As a mother, as the Queen of Peace, I am calling you to accept my Son so that He can grant you peace of soul—that He can grant you that which is just, which is good for you. My children, my Son knows you. He lived the life of man, and at the same time of God: a wondrous life—human flesh, divine Spirit. Therefore, my children, while my Son is looking at you with His eyes of God, He penetrates into your hearts. His tender, warm eyes are looking for Himself in your heart. My children, can He find Himself [there]? Accept Him, and then the moments of pain and suffering will become moments of tenderness. Accept Him, and you will have peace in [your] soul—you will spread it to all those around you—and this is what you now need the most. Heed me, my children. Pray for the shepherds, for those whose hands my Son has blessed. Thank you.
The answer is so obvious: ACCEPTING JESUS. But how to accetp Jesus? In his homily at Mass in the Casa Santa Marta celebrated on Thursday 20, 2020, Pope Francis taught us that accepting Jesus means truly knowing Jesus. In that beautiful and deep homily the Holy Father reflected on two questions found at the daily Gospel reading: Who do people say that I am? And who do you say that I am?
For Pope Francis there are three steps to knowing Jesus. In fact, the Gospel presents these three steps to us so that we might learn who Jesus actually is! These steps can be translated into three verbs: to know, to witness and to accept that path that God has selected for Jesus.
The first step is knowing Jesus. Hence, knowing Jesus is what all of do “when we read the Gospel, when we take children to catechesis… to Mass”. Therefore, the Holy Father stated that this “is only the first step”. The second step means witnessing to Jesus. In other words, it is boiled down to publicly accepting Jesus. But to do so we desperately need God’s power, the Holy Spirit. By our own we can’t do that and “therefore the Christian Community must always seek the power of the Holy Spirit to witness to Jesus, to say that He is God, that He is the Son of God”.
Then, we finally arrive at the third and last step, namely accepting Jesus’ death. After asking what is the aim of Jesus’ life? and why has he come, the Pope answered the question by saying that it means taking the third step of knowing Him. Here, the Pope recalled how Jesus began to instruct His apostles that He had to suffer, be killed and then rise again. He said:
“Witnessing to Jesus is bearing witness to His death, His resurrection; it is not proclaiming: ‘You are God’ and stopping there. No: ‘You came for us and you died for me. You are resurrected. You give us life. You promised us the Holy Spirit to guide us’. Witnessing to Jesus means accepting the path that the Father chose for Him: humiliation. Paul, writing to the Philippians, says that God sent His Son, who ’emptied Himself, taking the form of a slave… He humbled himself, even unto death, death on a cross’. If we do not accept the path of Jesus, the path of humiliation that He has chosen for redemption, not only are we not Christians: we deserve what Jesus said to Peter: ‘Get behind me, Satan!’
In that homily, Pope Francis rightly pointed that “witnessing to Jesus means accepting the path of humility and humiliation”. Then he boldy said: “The Church makes a mistake when she does not follow this path, she becomes worldly“. The result of all this itinerary is, surely, personal peace. And through your and my personal peace, which comes at the cost of humility and humiliation can our world have that peace it direly looks for!
Father, give me the grace to be consistent in following your Son and my Brother Jesus on His way to the cross, even to humiliation, so that your peace reigns in my heart and, through me, it touches the others’ lives. Amen.
Fr Mario Attard OFM Cap
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