Today we will pray the Fifth Joyful Mystery: The Finding of Jesus in the Temple. The Fifth Joyful Mystery touches mothers on many levels. Unborn babies in the womb are hidden to us, but very much a part of us. We feel them there, but long for the moment we can hold them in our arms. In some ways (illogically perhaps, but humanistically) we feel we can protect them when they are in our embrace. This doesn’t change from day one until the last day we have with them in our lives.
Today we will pray the Fourth Joyful Mystery: The Presentation of the Lord. Mary and Joseph bring Jesus to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord. They travel in obedience to the Law but also in reverence for the gift of the Child-Messiah they are privileged to raise as their own. They are humble in offering their precious Child back to God, full of trust and love.
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Today we will pray the Third Joyful Mystery: The Nativity. A lot of anxiety surrounds the delivery of a new baby. Whether this is our first pregnancy, our third, or our eighth, different variables make it impossible to know for certain what is going to happen in the delivery room.
Today we will pray the Second Joyful Mystery: The Visitation. I imagine that the barrage of questions asked of a typical mom-to-be reached Mary’s ears throughout her pregnancy. It can certainly be draining. If folks are not asking questions, they have at least been looking at your growing stomach since their first suspicions of your pregnancy.
Today we will pray the First Joyful Mystery: The Annunciation. “The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary and she conceived of the Holy Spirit.” This first part of the Angelus prayer reminds us of the great announcement of all times: God would become flesh in the womb of Mary Most Holy so we could be saved.
Today we will pray the Introductory Prayers. The “feminine genius,” a term popularized by St. John Paul II, is perhaps best expressed in the receptivity represented by pregnancy. A woman opens herself up to the physical presence of another person—tiny and fragile though he may be. She conscientiously focuses on providing the best nutrition for her growing baby.