Presentata Curia 22nd August 2013

Allocutio: Queenship of Mary

The recent royal birth makes plain that just because a future king is born his mother is not ipso facto a Queen. She only becomes Queen once her husband or Son accedes to the throne. It is precisely in that role, of being close to the King, can she have strong sway. And that depends on how close they are and whether the King entertains wife or son.

During his life Jesus was called a Prophet, Rabbi, Messiah. Apart from the moment after he had multiplied the loaves and he fishes when they wanted to make him king it was only at the moment of death did the title “King” come really into play. Just as they were about to condemn him the Jews charged that he had claimed to be a King. Pilate said to him, “So you are a king!” And he placed over him on the Cross (his throne) the title, “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews”. And there at his side stood his mother, moving also into her role as Queen.

Once Risen and ascended to Heaven Jesus was confirmed in the role as King of the Universe. Mary then exercised her role as Queen in the run up to Pentecost when she prayed for the infant Church that it would receive the Spirit. And not soon afterwards God withdrew Our Lady from this world to give her her just rewards for the role she had played.

A Queen’s influence is proportionate to the affections and respect had for her by the King. A queen who is troublesome or had a bad relationship with her son may not get a great hearing unless she wears him down and to get rid of her he gives in to her wishes occasionally. For Jesus however there is very high esteem and appreciation of Mary. God was so humble and so respectful of us that he would not enter our world without someone’s permission. By her “Fiat” she gave him the opening he needed to enter our world. Mary said “Yes” for us all and he was so grateful that she allowed him to carry out his redemption.

Fast forward to the final act of that redemption in his earthly journey, the Cross. And there she was in solidarity with him in his greatest hour. She shared his suffering in complete submission to God’s will, trusting in faith that what had been promised her by the Lord would be fulfilled. Indeed in St. John’s Gospel we see the depth of his affection and concern for her. “Woman, behold your Son”. “Son, behold your mother.”

Because he so admires her faith and courage, her charity and her humility, she has great access to him. Already in Cana she shows signs of her intercessory powers. But the deepest cause of affection in his heart for her is because she shared his Cross. That has produced between them a unique bond that is had by no one else with God. She has his ear even better now than when she drew out his powers in Cana for the embarrassed couple.

And that is our confidence, that she as his Queen can gain for the world and us all great graces even if our dispositions are not always best. For it is worth thinking about what we really ask of her. To pray and ask that your lost ducklings may be found seems trivial. I’m certainly not going to ask her to win back for me the covering on my head that now shows a helicopter pad! But it is worth asking what we should ask given her unique place.

I remember years ago on Pilgrimage to Knock. The troubles were as bad as they could be in Belfast and I met women there worn out with stress. They came to pray for peace in Belfast and other intentions, asking her intercession. I am convinced Our Lady, Queen of Ireland, won the graces to get us where we are today. That is the power of her prayer. Recent events alert us that we still need the help of that powerful intercessor before the throne of the Lamb.

What should we ask her to obtain for us? Well she knows what is best. She submitted to God’s will, went with what every day gave her with its trials and joys, lived with the upset and the calm, suffered wretchedly but offered it up in faith, and has been granted the joys of Heaven. She can see what we cannot. She can see that it is beneficial for us all to have some share in the Cross and thereby be blessed in Heaven. As she said to Bernadette, “I do not promise that you will be happy in this life but in the next”.

My prayer is for a deeper gift of faith so that I would accept the Cross with greater willingness and peace, for the grace to only do the will of God, to become just what God wants me to be, to be a helpful witness to others, if it be God’s will the crown of martyrdom, and by God’s goodness, although unworthy, to see the light of Heaven. Surely a prayer like that is one she would gladly put before her Son.

“Holy Mary, Mother of God, Immaculate Queen, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen”
Amen.
Fr Paul Churchill


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