At last, it’s the Easter Season, a time of glorious mysteries. Spring is winding into summer, and we can see move-up days and graduations beckoning in the distance. Sports are in full swing, pun intended, for those of you who engage in such. In our family of dancers, musicians, and actors, however, springtime is showtime: recitals and plays and story ballets. It’s nearly the end of the school year, after all. It’s time for our kids to stand and deliver. They’ve spent months preparing for this. So have we. Now let’s see the fruit, right?
Just look outside, just about no matter where you live. Whether you’re in crocus country or your roses are just coming back to life, it’s like all of nature knows it’s time to bloom and flower in order to make way for the fruit—the next big thing.
As our Easter season progresses, we approach the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord. We go through the mysteries of the Rosary, and we see the pattern of our lives (even as thoroughly modern mommies) in the life Our Lady shared with Jesus. No matter what pain it caused her, she had to let Him go to accomplish something He had prepared from before the dawn of time to accomplish. Then—joy of joys! For all the pain, it all came out all right in the end! He rose again!
But that wasn’t all, was it? He rose, and He returned, but then He had more to accomplish. I don’t feel comfortable calling the Ascension a graduation, but I can say with confidence that Mary knows how our hearts feel during this time of year, when we see the flower at last bear fruit, and what happens to fruit if it stays on the tree? It rots.
And just as we watch our children move on to the next big thing, so it was time for Jesus to go, too, to ascend to His Father and ours. How overjoyed Mary must have been, but how much it must have hurt, this change in how her son would now be present to her. Did she long for those first days at the manger, Jesus grasping her finger as if He’d never let go? Did she laugh at the memory of losing Him in Jerusalem, thinking that was nothing compared to watching Him ascend amid the clouds? Did she accept each Eucharist she received, straining to see that beloved face in what looked for all the world like the bread of affliction?
We don’t know. What we do know is what Jesus told the disciples, told Mary, and tells each one of us as he rises under His own power into heaven: to go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel. Let everyone know that the death of flowers is just the birth of fruit, that the loss of fruit is just a new life that will bloom in time, that the cycle of mysteries we pray in the Rosary with our families gives us companionship and consolation from the Mother of All who has seen it all, felt it all, and loves us all still … even if we are in danger of rotting.
So as you drive the kids to the next practice, the next rehearsal, recital or game, remember that drive time equals Rosary time. When it’s time to go, wherever your current season sends you, remember how Mary walks beside you and puts your hand in Christ’s.
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.
Copyright 2018 Erin McCole Cupp