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Stand with us, Mary and Mary
The joys and the hopes,
the griefs and the anxieties
of the people of this age,
especially those who are poor
or in any way afflicted,
these are the joys and hopes,
the griefs and anxieties
of the followers of Christ.
Our griefs and anxieties are embodied
by Mary, the mother of Jesus,
standing at the foot of the cross
with unyielding faith.
She stands under the weight of the cross,
holding the tension,
refusing to give back in kind,
resisting in a deeper way.
She absorbs the hatred, the heartlessness.
It stops with her.
She is gentle, she is understanding,
she is peace.
Mary of Nazareth stands
beside Mary of Magdala,
her son’s companion on the journey, and ours.
On the Third Day, this faithful friend
will discover the stone rolled back.
No body to anoint. Nobody but her
to run and share the joys and the hopes!
One Mary, the dear friend, at the empty tomb,
then the other, his mother, in the upper room,
first among the apostles, bear Christ to all.
Mary and Mary, stand with us
as we encounter our griefs and anxieties,
our joys and our hopes.
Obtain for us now a new ardor
born of the resurrection,
that we may bring to all the Gospel of life
which triumphs over death.
Give us a holy courage to seek new paths,
to share unfading beauty with every woman and man.
This prayer weaves words from Gaudium et Spes (the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, from the Second Vatican Council http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19651207_gaudium-et-spes_en.html ), Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel, the 2013 exhortation of Pope Francis http://www.vatican.va/evangelii-gaudium/en/#2 ), and the writing of Fr. Ron Rolheiser, OMI. (http://ronrolheiser.com/en/#.U03a0fldWSo )
Education for Justice also offers an Easter reflection on Evangelii Gaudium’s insights on the Resurrection at https://educationforjustice.org/resources/joy-gospel-hope-springs-life
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