|Wedding feast at Cana|
She would not have had any sins to be forgiven! Why would She need to do penance?
But She would have.
In the scriptures, we hear of Our Lady observing Jewish practices diligently.
We have the feasts of Our Lord's Circumcision (I wonder if it is still in the New calendar) and Our Lady's Purification. So, yes, in short, She would have fasted on the fasting days in Jewish calendar.
But then why should we fast?
After all, that is a Jewish practice, right? Why should Catholics observe laws and traditions of Judaism?
Our Lord's very existence was not to abolish the law, but to fulfill it.
(Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. Mt 5:17-18) Do you remember when Christ says "Consummatum est" (Jn 19:30)? In Douay Rheims, He says "It is consummated." (Sometimes the problem I find with Vulgate Bible and Douay-Rheims, because they are so close in context, Douay-Rheims do not quite go far enough for a half-wit like me) Perhaps it is the Consummation we have been talking about in this blog post. But this Consummation is not abolition; it is the fulfillment of the Old Law. So Whilst it is difficult to guess what Our Lady would have given up for Lent, it is difficult to imagine that She would not have given up something or fasted for a certain number of days/hours during Lent had She been living amongst us in 2012.
All our corporal works of Charity and abstinence are given legitimacy solely from Our Lord's Passion. Without His Passion and Resurrection, all these would be in vain. Also without the Humility to recognise that and that by ourselves, we cannot quite achieve our missions; Discipleship, Ministry and Salvation of souls. (I cast not away the grace of God. For if justice be by the law, then Christ died in vain. Gal 2:21) Observing what the Church requires us to keep as rules is important but I think it is also very useful to note that without Christ's Death, it would not have been quite the same thing.
So as we always do, we must ask for Our Lady's help, that all Our works of Charity (I am not doing much but still) may be fitting to be taken up to Heaven, before the Throne of the Blessed Trinity, through Her intercession. The Heavenly Gardener will pluck out the thorns, pluck out nasty bits and give all our prayers/abstinence a good wash before Our Lord receives them as the most exquisite wreathes of roses to garland His Throne. And we all do it for the greater Glory of God, right? Ad maiorem Dei Gloriam!
A parting gift for today is Ave Verum Corpus Natum.
It is a sweet little prayer in honour of the Blessed Sacrament connecting Our Lord's Nativity and Passion. I say it often after Communion and it is so short you can learn it in fifteen minutes!
Ave verum Corpus natum
De Maria Virgine:
Vere passum, immolatum
In cruce pro homine:
Cuius latus perforatum
Fluxit aqua et sanguine:
Esto nobis praegustatum
Mortis in examine.
O Iesu dulcis!
O Iesu pie!
O Iesu Fili Mariae. Amen