☩「新しい年を神の母に託そう」2024年1月1日「神の母聖マリア」の祝日ミサで

(2024.1.1 バチカン放送)

 教皇フランシスコが2024年の1月1日、聖ペトロ大聖堂で「神の母聖マリア」の祭日のミサを捧げられた。

 ミサ中の説教で教皇は、エフェソ(エフェソス)公会議(431年)の時、人々が「神の聖なる母」の名を喜びをもって唱えたように、新年を神の母聖マリアに捧げ、祈りながら迎えることは素晴らしいこと、と話された。

 教皇は「『神の母』という言葉は、『母の腕に抱かれた御子イエスが、私たち人類と永久に結ばれた』という喜びにあふれた確信を表すものです」とされ、「『神の母』は、主と私たちの永遠の契約を短い言葉で宣言するものであり、それは『信仰の教義』であると同時に『希望の教義』でもあります」と説かれた。

 また、「教会の持つ女性的な性格を再発見する上でも、教会はマリアを必要としています」と指摘。「女性、おとめ、母であるマリアは、女性の役割に光を当て、世話と、配慮、忍耐、勇気といった母性的な側面を持つ司牧を通して教会を生かすための、完全な模範です」と語られた。

 そして、「世界もまた、平和を見出すために、暴力と憎しみの連鎖から抜け出すために、人間的な眼差しを取り戻すために、母たち、女性たちを見つめなければなりません」と強調。「すべての社会は、女性の賜物を受け入れながら、女性を尊重し、守り、価値を見出す必要がある。女性を傷つける者は、女性から生まれた神を冒涜することになると知るべきです」と話された。

 最後に、「新年を神の母に託しつつ、私たちの人生を奉献しましょう」と呼びかけられた教皇は、「この一年が主の慰めと、神の母聖マリアの優しさにあふれるものとなる」ように祈られた。

(編集「カトリック・あい」)

 

(2024.1.1  Vatican News Thaddeus Jones)

(以下、翻訳中)
In his homily at the New Year’s Day Mass celebrating the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, Pope Francis calls on us to “entrust this coming year to the Mother of God” and consecrate our lives to her. With her “tender love…she will lead us to Jesus.” On this day the Church also marks the World Day of Peace.

Presiding over the morning Mass in Saint Peter’s Basilica on New Year’s Day, Pope Francis spoke about this day when we celebrate in a special way the Holy Mother of God, “a simple phrase that confesses the Lord’s eternal covenant with us.” January 1st marks the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, and also the day the Church marks the World Day of Peace.

The fullness of time

The Pope illustrated the meaning of the expression “the fullness of time” we read in the Scriptures and how “divine grace spills over” when “God becomes man” through Mary, “the means chosen by God, the culmination of that long line of individuals and generations that ‘drop by drop’ prepared for the Lord’s coming into the world.”

“The Mother, then, stands at the very heart of the mystery of time. It pleased God to turn history around through her, the woman. With that one word, “woman”, the Scripture brings us back to the beginning, to Genesis, and makes us realize that the Mother and Child mark a new creation, a new beginning. Thus, at the beginning of the time of salvation, there is the Mother of God, our Holy Mother.”

Dogma of hope

The words “Mother of God,” the Pope explained, “express the joyful certainty that the Lord, a tiny Child in his Mamma’s arms, has united himself forever to our humanity, to the point that it is no longer only ours, but his as well,”  the Lord’s eternal covenant with us.

“Mother of God: a dogma of faith, but also a “dogma of hope”; God in man, and man in God, forever. Holy Mother of God.”

At the same time,  the Pope emphasized that we should remember that “the motherhood of Mary is the path leading us to the paternal tenderness of God, the closest, most direct and easiest of paths.”

Maternal care and courage

The Church also needs to rediscover in Mary, Virgin and Mother, how to be “generative” with pastoral ministry distinguished by “concern and care, patience and maternal courage,” said the Pope. And the world could also look to mothers and women for ways to find peace and “see things with genuinely human eyes and hearts.”

“Every society needs to accept the gift that is woman, every woman: to respect, defend and esteem women, in the knowledge that whosoever harms a single woman profanes God, who was “born of a woman”.”

Grace overflows

The Pope then spoke about how Mary plays “a decisive role” also in each of our lives, as “no one knows better than a Mother the stages of growth and the urgent needs of her children.”

“Mary knows our needs; she intercedes to make grace overflow in our lives and to guide them to authentic fulfilment.”

The Pope said we can “seek refuge” in Mary, especially in times of loneliness, when dealing with our shortcomings, “whenever we are no longer able to untie the knots in our lives.” And may we turn to Mary for help in becoming “artisans of unity” in our times “bereft of peace” so that we can do so “with her maternal creativity and concern for her children.”

Entrusting the year to the Mother of God

In conclusion, the Pope said in his homily interspersed with quotes from Paul VI, Thomas of Celano, Martin Luther and the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium, that we should entrust the New Year to the Mother of God, consecrating our lives to her, as “she will lead us to Jesus, who is himself ‘the fullness of time,’ of every time, of our own time.”

“May this year be filled with the consolation of the Lord! May this year be filled with the tender maternal love of Mary, the Holy Mother of God. And now let us all proclaim together, three times: Holy Mother of God! Holy Mother of God! Holy Mother of God!”

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