Flowers for the Immaculate Conception (“We were sinners” edition)

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“Frost and chill, bless the Lord!”

Aussie Mum made a good catch about another “Flower for the Immaculate Conception.” (HERE). She said:

“I can imagine Our Lady reciting or singing parts of Azariah’s prayer – the praises for example that he and his companions prayed (Daniel 3:51-56 and 58-90) – but parts of the prayer that he prayed alone, such as “ Sinners we were, that had wronged and forsaken thee, all was amiss with us …” (verses 29-30) seem most unsuitable to be voiced by the Immaculate Conception since she was totally sinless. Maybe I have the wrong prayer or have not properly understood. The praises are certainly beautiful and verse 70 does indeed go well with the photo above [“Snow and ice, bless the Lord!”]. Thank you Father. Your posts get me thinking on things that are good to be thinking about.”

Good catch, Aussie Mum.

It is true, of course, that Mary was never touched by original sin, that she is, therefore, the Immaculate Conception. It is true, of course, that Mary never personally sinned.

But there is something else to consider here so as to give credit to our Lady where credit is due. She also had to be redeemed, which is the way she was able to be saved from original sin at the first instant of her conception so that it never touched her. In other words – time not being a difficulty with God – what her Son did on the Cross was also done for her.

Take note, then, that this provided her with such purity of heart and agility of soul and clarity of vision that the fact of the Redemption to come also being needed for her was obvious, providing her with opportunity to be thankful, and not only for herself, but for all for whom her Divine Son would lay down His life, and for whom she would become a mother with such a spirit of solidarity:

“ Sinners we were, that had wronged and forsaken thee, all was amiss with us …”

She interceded for us in utter solidarity with what her Son on the Cross was doing for us all, but not forgetting for an instant that she had to be thankful as well. She had never been a sinner – true! – but she was aware of that sin more than all of us put together. The “we” and “us” are, for her, truths of solidarity, not of personal fact.

I hope the one-day-to-be-canonized Archbishop Fulton J Sheen once said that only the sinless know sin. Sinners are so immersed in darkness that they cannot see the Standard of Goodness, Jesus, but only their darkness. They cannot see the contrast. They cannot see why sin is called sin and bad and evil. Only the sinless, who have purity of heart and agility of soul and clarity of vision can see Jesus for who He is, also on the Cross, though tortured to death like the worst of criminals. And in seeing that sin, seeing what we need perfectly, she can then, with such a maternal heart, intercede for us perfectly, uniting herself to us, standing in our place with all the “we” and “us”, innocent as she is, you know, just like her Son, who stands in our place, the innocent for the guilty, so that He might have the right in His own justice to have mercy on us.

You know the old saying:

Like Son, like mother.

5 Comments

Filed under Flores, Immaculate Conception, Mary

5 responses to “Flowers for the Immaculate Conception (“We were sinners” edition)

  1. Aussie Mum

    ‘The “we” and “us” are, for her, truths of solidarity, not of personal fact.’
    I hadn’t thought of that. Thank you Father. Your insights enrich and deepen my otherwise shallow understanding.

    • Father George David Byers

      If I say things, it doesn’t mean that I understand them!

      • Aussie Mum

        May be you don’t always understand your insights Father but what you write about the Mother of God is nonetheless very insightful because you are closer to Our Lord than we are and those insights come from Him. Priests occupy a unique position between God and the rest of us, and those priests who love His Mother have hearts more atuned to His.
        Hoping you will write again soon on Genesis re the Immaculate Conception and Salvation History.

      • Father George David Byers

        Thanks for the encouragement but I think we priests are a bit more hapless than all that, at least because of our own fault. Yes, Genesis.

  2. sanfelipe007

    Father, is that another way of saying “out of the mouths of babes..?”

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