Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

There’s a lot of talk these days about how kids are “over-scheduled” with too many activities: sports, music and dance lessons, clubs, Scouts, and all sorts of other extra-curricular activities. Experts are warning that this oversheduling of children can lead to some troubling negative effects:

For instance, it fragments the family because family members spend less time together. Everyone becomes exhausted and stressed out. The family meal becomes ancient history. Some kids conclude that there must be something wrong with them because they do so many things designed to improve them. Also, oversheduling breeds selfishness, because all of the kid’s activities are about their advancement, their development, and their amusement. Finally, overscheduling leads to some families missing Sunday Mass. Nevertheless, parents overschedule their kids because they want, above all else, for their children to be successful.

This is why I think that today’s memorial of the Presentation of Mary is so important. We recall the tradition that Mary’s parents, Joachim and Anne, presented their young daughter to God in the great Jerusalem Temple, and dedicated her to his service forever. They didn’t dedicate her to the pursuit of success. They dedicated her to the Lord.

The story of Mary’s Presentation reminds all of us that our lives should be dedicated to the service of God. Life is about learning to love God above all else and building his kingdom in the process. Some famous words of Mother Teresa sum it up well. “God has not called us to be successful,” she said, “He has called us to be faithful.”

(My book of daily meditations for Lent is now available from Ave Maria Press: https://www.avemariapress.com/product/1-59471-363-4/The-Living-Gospel-Daily-Devotions-for-Lent-2013/

It is available also at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Daily-Devotions-Lent-Living-Gospel/dp/1594713634/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1335995419&sr=8-1 )

Also available from Barnes and Noble and other online retailers!


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