My dear friends in college . . . and beyond,
How is your summer going? For some of you perhaps, your summer is going too rapidly, and you are starting to feel the all-too-familiar pressure of the coming school year. I myself have mixed reactions. I do not want summer to end, but I am also excited to welcome a new class of wide-eyed frosh into the sacred halls of Chaminade.
I see August as a transition month. We are all more relaxed and may even have real opportunities for vacation time. At the same time, in the not-too-distant future, we see the responsibilities and expectations of a new year in college or work.
For me, August has been a special month, for it was on August 15, 1962 that I made my final vows in the Society of Mary. August gives me a real opportunity to examine how I am living those vows, that initial commitment. Am I doing whatever He tells me? Am I closer to Mary now, and am I sharing her story, her love with others?
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, August 15, is one of the oldest celebrations in the Church. Mary, the Ark of the Covenant, the one who bore the Messiah in her womb, has not been left to return to dust, but is now what we will all be in time. Her flesh even now is glorified and enjoys the vision of God. Even Islam, in chapter 9 of the Quran, honors Mary and accepts her Assumption.
When I reflect on Mary, I am constantly drawn back to the mystic, Meister Eckhart, who was strong in his belief that we, like Mary, should become the womb of Jesus. What does that mean? We must carry Jesus with us every day of our lives. We must transmit joy because of that union.
As I reflect on my spiritual journey after all of these years and ask myself if I have become the womb of Jesus, I invite you to spend some time asking yourself the same question, perhaps on August 15, On that day, will you will pray for me, as I will pray for you?
Remember, Mary will never abandon you.
On behalf of all my Marianist Brothers,
Bro. Lawrence Syriac, S.M.