Feast of the Queenship of Mary
Isaiah 9 : 1 – 6
Luke 26 – 38
Today, for the second time during the month of August, we honor our Blessed Mother. Actually, the "Queenship" of Mary may sound like an odd title for one of her feast days. I have sometimes found it to be a strain to put the idea of "Queen" together with Isaiah’s prophecy and the wonderful image of Mary as the "handmaid" of the Lord in Luke’s gospel. Of all the evangelists, St. Luke might be the one to most shy away from images of royalty when it comes to both Mary and her Son. Yet here we are celebrating this wonderful feast day.
Isaiah certainly looks to the birth of a king who will restore the royal line of King David and be the savior for the people. The majestic titles – Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, and Prince of Peace – create a vivid portrait of one who will rise up to fill God’s People with light, joy, and peace while freeing them from all that is darkness, all that holds them down, and all that holds them away from God. Who can the mother of this King be?
As believers in Jesus, we look back on Isaiah through the prism of the resurrection. We recognize the mother of this newborn king. St. Luke describes her for us. She is a humble maid servant of the Lord who listens attentively to God’s voice and is only intent to follow God’s pathways for her life. It is Mary’s acceptance of God’s design that transformed her life to one of service not only to God but to her Son and, through Him, to all of us. Her "yes" created a role for Mary in each of our lives, i.e. to draw us with love to the heart of her Son, Jesus.
As such, Mary stands in a position overlooking the cascading generations of believers offering majestic and royal guidance to the pathways of our lives. She reigns as "Queen" for sure, but a "Queen" who is always a humble, gentle and loving companion and guide.
Fr. Richard Burke, CP, is a member of St. Paul of the Cross Province and also serves on the Provincial Council of Holy Cross Province. He lives at St. Ann’s Monastery in Scranton, Pennsylvania.