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Mary Finding Jesus in the Temple

Fr. John Kingsbury, CSsR

Coordinator for the North American Conference of Redemptorists:
In the Gospel of Luke we are told that each year the Holy Family would travel by caravan to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover. One year, the year when Jesus was 12 years old, Mary and Joseph, began to travel home, but did not realize that they were making their journey without Jesus, because He has stayed behind in the Temple speaking with the Elders.

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Mary Dealing with Her Relatives

Fr. John Kingsbury, CSsR
Coordinator for the North American Conference of Redemptorists:

What a difficult situation Mary has been placed in and I am so very impressed with her flexibility. God is moving in ways that are unusual within her culture and she has to deal not only with her wondering about what God is about, but also the negative reaction of her family! The word I have heard being used for this situation is being “counter-cultural.” Mary had to understand that God was moving a way that was different than the way society was going, God was being “counter-cultural” and Mary decided to follow the ways of God even though many members of her family did not understand.

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Mary as a Member of the Family of God

Fr. John Kingsbury, CSsR
Coordinator for the North American Conference of Redemptorists:

In the Gospel of Mathew we read about a time when Jesus was teaching and someone said to Him “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, asking to speak to you.” And Jesus said in reply, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers? And stretching out His hand toward His disciples He said 'Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Heavenly Father is my brother, and sister, and mother.'”

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Mary at the Cross

Fr. John Kingsbury, CSsR
Coordinator for the North American Conference of Redemptorists:

I have found it powerful to look at various events in the life of Jesus through the eyes of Mary, especially through her eyes as a First Century Jewish Person. When I do so the Scriptures unfold in a fascinating way and I discover imagery that would have been lost to me if I just just look through my own understanding of the meanings of certain words.

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Mary at the Tomb

Fr. John Kingsbury, CSsR
Coordinator for the North American Conference of Redemptorists:

The second custom of the First Century was to visit the tomb for three days after a person was placed there. I have never found a clear reason as to why this practice had developed but it was a First Century Jewish practice to visit the tomb for each of the three days following burial. After three days these daily journeys would end.

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