Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Blessings on the Feast of St Mary of the Cross

Icon of St Mary of the Cross, St Benedict's Narrabundah ACT
On Monday I was able to go to St Christopher's Cathedral, Canberra ACT and sit with the Icon of St Mary of the Cross on her first feast day.
I then went to St Benedict's Narrabundah, where a copy of the image is enthroned. When I arrived the church was quiet, several people were present and the Blessed Sacrament was exposed for adoration. St Benedict’s is a Eucharistic Centre in Canberra. The parish is administered by the Missionaries of God's Love under the guidance of Fr Ken Barker. It has a very prayerful presence. It is a place of devotion, adoration, praise and peace.
As I gazed at the image of St Mary of the Cross the rope hanging from the stump attracted my attention. The rope breaks into the gold background. The gold is representative of heaven. The rope signifies the activities of St Mary - she travelled the country on horseback, buggy and boat. She broke into the poverty of people’s lives and brought hope - she broke into heaven by her love in action. She cared for the sick, the uneducated, the poor and destitute, she stepped out of her comfort zone and made a difference. It is not rocket science – but it does take courage, determination and TRUST. As Peter stepped out of the boat and walked on water, we too are called to step out and keep our eyes fixed on Christ, trusting in him as we journey through the challenges of each day.
Mary MacKillop was born in Melbourne (Australia) in 1842 and died in Sydney on 8 August 1909. She took the religious name Mary of the Cross. Responding to the isolation of colonial families, she pioneered a new form of religious life to provide education for their children. She and her sisters shared the life of the poor and the itinerant, offering special care to destitute women and children. She is remembered for her eagerness to discover God's will in all things, for her charity in the face of calumny, and for her abiding trust in God's providence. From the Text of the Mass for the Solemnity of St Mary of the Cross.